The Piano

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She sits slumped over the black and white keys, hands in her lap. Her eyes are closed as she slowly rocks forward, letting her head drop. She stops, her nose so close to one of the keys it tingles in anticipation of the actual touch. A single tear forms in the corner of her closed eyelid and begins it’s descent down the slope of her nose. It tickles her skin yet she makes no effort to interrupt its descent. Now it clings to the tip of her nose and stretches, bridging the gap momentarily between emotion and release.

Her hands, flaccid with grief, find their way to the keys. Time to play. Time to escape. Time to transfer the grief into something palpable. A song for her sorrow. The fact that she stumbles through the creation does not hinder her emotion. She is still slumped over the keys as her fingers fumble for the notes that will ring out the true feelings of her soul in this moment. Her body sways side to side, back and forth, trembling at times under the weight of so much feeling. But as she continues she finds herself getting stronger, or perhaps her burden getting lighter.

She still sways but with an upended posture. Her body now trembles with release. She weeps freely, salty drops splashing onto the keys below. Though blinded by tears, her fingers more sure of their course, play the right notes effortlessly. They convey adequately the depth of her sorrow, and then suddenly, something she did not expect. This, a mistake of her fingers, yet it rings true in her heart. She thought to be consumed with grief, but sure as her fingers played it out over the keys, she feels it. Hope. Determination.

She finds the despair is flushed from her by a desire to overcome. She weeps no more with sorrow but with conviction in her ability to choose. She can choose for her life to play out differently. She can choose to remember without being brought down into despair. She can choose to face the darkest parts of herself without thought of escape or denial.

She will not let the song of her soul be one of monotony.

~Summer Owens


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