When I said vinyl is fussier’
today than when I was a kid,
my friend said “maybe it hasn’t
changed; your expectations have.”

When it skips, I let it spin and slide
a brush across, bristles meander,
slip, stumble through the grooves.

Gently pluck filaments of lint
from the needle. Adjust the arm.
I bought a kit to clean them.
Even heard casting in wood glue.

But sometimes grit is stubborn.
And scratches just won’t heal.
Notes lean forward, tumble back–
strangle the word you need to hear.

Sometimes you need to shroud
and bury it on the shelf. Sometimes
you just need to play something new.