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Power of music: Poems from Norbert Krapf and Richard Pflum

Scorpio Wrecking Ball
by Norbert Krapf

I’m your Scorpio wrecking ball,
the red pepper in your soup,
the flash of pain in your belly.

Oh I can sing it intense,
I got the gut-bucket blues
deep down in my psyche

but I can see the stars
when they flash and sometimes
I climb the ladder higher and higher.

If you’re the one listens well
I’ll sneak into your office and let
my roiling guts spill in your truth chair.

I bet you’ll even smile ever so slow
and sweet and offer me herbal tea.
That’s when I go ballistic, baby,

quoting the prophets and visionaries
before you put a hand on my shoulder
and tap me into good-boy submission.

Come on outside and we’ll howl together
in harmony at the full moon over our heads
before it’s time to head back to the cabin.

You wouldn’t believe how calm
I can become when the time is right.
Sit with me, stare into my animal eyes.

Bio: Indiana Poet Laureate 2008-10, Norbert Krapf is the author of ten full-length poetry collections, the latest being American Dreams: Reveries and Reflections (2013) and Songs in Sepia and Black and White (2012). In April 2014 his Catholic Boy Blues: A Poet's Journal of Healing appeared. He has collaborated with jazz pianist Monika Herzig, with whom he released a CD, Imagine, and with bluesman Gordon Bonham. He has also collaborated with photographers Daryl Jones, David Pierini, and Richard Fields in books published by Indiana University Press

Editor's Note: Norbert Krapf will be reading and signing copies of his latest book at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 27, at Indiana Interchurch Center, 1100 W. 42nd St., Indianapolis.
RSVP before April 20th.  Go to:

Pianos Too Must Have Souls
by Richard Pflum

For my Newfoundland dog Steinway”

Once I found it hearing Bach’s Well Tempered
It was so apparent, I felt more than heard.
But it sometimes was a tangible apparition, there,
in my dreams where in the morning my parents
are not up yet and I am practicing a Bach Two
Part Invention
, without pedal. My teacher always
warned about using too much pedal in Bach.
“Connect with your fingers,” she said. My parents
always say my practicing Bach sounds like I’m
doing my technical exercises, so I practice him
only when they are still asleep.

These days I dream of a lone upright piano sitting
on a stormy, deserted ocean beach. Its lid is open,
the steel frame along with the tops and pegs
of some of the strings are exposed. The white
overlays on some of the keys are chipped or
missing. It sits there like a lost, forlorn dog
awaiting its master—who will never return.

Bio: Richard Pflum is a native of and now lives in Indianapolis. He is the author of three full-length books of poetry, A Dream of Salt (The Fredrick Brewer Press, now The Raintree Press, Bloomington, Ind., 1980), A Strange Juxtaposition of Parts (The Writers’ Center Press, Indianapolis, 1995), and Some Poems to Be Read Out Loud (Chatter House Press, Indianapolis, 2013). He has appeared in Tears in the Fence (U.K.), The Flying Island, The Reaper, Exquisite Corpse, PlopLop, Hopewell Review, and Kayak. He also has a poems in the anthologies The Indiana Experience (Indiana University Press, 1977) and A New Geography of Poets (University of Arkansas Press, 1992), and two poems in The New Laurel Review (1999), and a poem in Glass Works (Pudding House, 2002). On the Internet, he can be found on the archive of PoetryNet, Poet of the Month, October 2003. He is the host of Evening With the Muse, a monthly reading and open mic of the Indiana Writers Center.

Editor's note:
Bach’s The Well Tempered Clavier (prelude):

Bach’s Two Part Invention #1, C- Major: