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Robert Phillips
Robert Phillips (born 1938) is an American poet and professor of English at the University of Houston. He is the author or editor of more than 30 volumes of poetry, fiction, poetry criticism and other works. In 1998 he was named a John and Rebecca Moores Scholar at the university. (Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

 

Instrument of Choice

tuba~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~She was a girl
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~no one ever chose
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~for teams or clubs,
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~dances or dates,

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~so she chose the instrument
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~no one else wanted:
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~the tuba. Big as herself,
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~heavy as her heart,

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~its golden tubes
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~and coils encircled her
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~like a lover’s embrace.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Its body pressed on hers.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Into its mouthpiece she blew
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~life, its deep-throated
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~oompahs, oompahs sounding,
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~almost, like mating cries.