Rehearsal:  the jazz band works with breath

the conductor plays out their notes,
invisible cord streaming from her hands

    inside your mouth 
    a room,
    she says,    
    make it what you want:
    dark with plush carpet of softened cheeks
    bright and tight with crisp tall walls
    choose an acoustical shape:
    cathedral arches
    smoky den

    check in with your lips
    get the breath going:  FULL
    aim a sound toward the teeth
    open up that hard palate
    tongue touching the tip
    roll the pitches again
    reinitiate when you need
    stagger-breathe and
    make eye contact
    hold the "look"
    share the breath
    feel it out
    add a lift
    dig it
    back off
    add a shake
    make it swell
    put the weight on the L
    get off it
    swing it
    give it some life
    bend that note
    give it a scoop
    hit the tough cut offs
    mind the ties and
    don't jump the gun;
    you can't be sassy if you're rushing

she may choose to swing and do_it
or to keep strict time and do | it,
but some things just won't change:
that thin brief hollow sound of "you",
that long-held golden orb of "moon"