An encomium for Coltrane's "Tunji"



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An encomium for Coltrane's "Tunji"
by Nia I'man Smith

3am is...

drunken melodies and the welcomed touch of a stranger's hand. matchstick fingertips and the ribbons of smoke teased from them at the slightest touch. it is throated temptation and gin laced kisses. swaying indigo shadows and the harsh clink of ice against a lone glass. it is the knowing of deadly things like how to soften a man's thunder rooted palms. how to perfume the center of his hollowed being. how to rouge the bruised places and powder the inviting ones. how to make men remember themselves in the mirror of your stare...

it is the knowing of deadly things like how to match the mirror of her stare. how to croon twilight whispers easy for the believing. how to pull from the center of her flesh when rounding crescent hips. it is the difference between holding and being held. it is the hunger to be peeled raw. it is the nakedness of desire and the inviting nature of this sweet, sweet thing. it is forgotten dreams remembered in a sepia painted face: crimson Cadillacs, palm trees, and white men calling you "Sir"...

it is the pocketing of fidelity. the decision not to go home. the lingering of a sweet, drunken melody. the welcomed touch of a stranger's familiar hand. the ribbons of smoke teased from matchstick fingertips. the temptation of gin laced kisses and swaying indigo shadows.

The harsh clink of ice against a lone glass, when the dance is over...

The song, "Tunji" appears on John Coltrane's classic 1962 album, Coltrane.



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