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Thursday, 7 January 2016

A Piano In The Night

(Written April 6th 2010)

I can’t say that when I saw the thing, I was impressed or inspired to any degree but there it was, peeking from under the rotten weathered tarp.
I’m out to get my groceries, I left my home with a purpose. I left, with every meaning to enter at Sobeys, within the 15 minutes it takes to walk there but fate had another idea for me.

Sometimes when I leave my apartment, I am not prepared. Perhaps I am tempted to stop and eat, drink, use the washroom, exchange in conversation. All of these things are counted, when I plan not to be late.

When walking to work I allow at least 10 minutes of extra travel time, knowing a priority will present itself along the way.
Whenever I have plans, I never carry a watch but am always conscious of time . . . Except this could not have been predicted nor avoided.

My headphones were in my ears but only as disguise to those around me, that I was in my own world because I realize in the evening, when the sun goes down, people look for excuses for random communication.

Here I am making good time, one block from my first turn to the left, two houses in, my head magnetically turns…

No shine, no movement, nothing. And to spot it even made no sense, as it's location was tucked between a scrapped car and a doorstep.
I floated with no effort, no thought.
My finger was even pointing before I could muster the ingredients of an idea.

Without pause I touched it and heard the most unforgettable sound of an out of tune note.


I’m in a room full of dancing dark skinned bright smiling folk, in a house where all of the furniture is pushed against the walls.
The floor bends as a man with his foot stamping, bangs on the ivory and ebony keys.

My heart swells with sunlight and the butterflies that mix only with inspiration.
I can feel the cups of cheer, and the same crisp air as this night, seeping through an open window.

An instinctive and involuntary breath, bursts anxiously, into my thirsty lungs.

A second note by my left hand, enters the atmosphere.
I can taste it.
The change of time.

Stale, with an earthy, soilish, dankness. I feel a long, harsh, spring, breaking the frost with cold grounds of earth and grit, grinding between molars.

Here he plays alone, his cup of cheer a poison, for drowning out the silence. Notes and tears mix and drip together, both dark and blue, as the wavy clouded skyline.

I sway, in an aching raw worship of painful hunger for his connection. The bond of his soul to these vacant notes, ripped tears out of unwilling eyes.

He looks toward the window, expecting inner reflection but seems to capture sight of my ghastly spirit. And the music stops.

The candles burn out in synchronized time, immediate and abrupt. It is as if every morsel of warmth had been murdered.

Smoke lingering on the air, drifting with the last echo of sound.

Here am I, with every sentiment lingering and no justification. The reminiscence feels excavated and stirred, stolen and fabricated.
I’d been held captive in a time that wasn’t mine, intruded on an intense and personal moment.

In awe, I stand with no witness, to an implausible self inflicted journey.

As a person must I recoiled, wiped any significance of vividness from my conscious thought and absurdly ignored the incident.

So here I sit, with a fresh glass of almond milk from Sobeys, before bed. I am still pretending that perceived alternate memory, is dishonor of reality.

…But that piano will haunt me, no doubt, for longer than it lasts. There between the doorstep and junk metal, 3 blocks to the left, under a half turned tarp.

It will echo again those two keys, left and right.
No one will notice the dust my fingers took or emotions that man put in the crisp night air.
I will NEVER forget.


  1. What an interesting story Wendy! I totally got every emotion you tried to get across. Well done :)