Thirteen Ways of Looking At a Piano

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I

Whether it’s a side glance, a quick look, or a full on stare,

anybody can observe the beauty of a piano with a

simple glimpse.

Few people, however, take notice of a piano’s true grace,

and for that, they are said to have

“an acquired taste”.

II

The piano can be seen being played in the most noble of facilities,

the light notes from a classical piece filling the air with

elegance,

but also in common places, where its jazzy undertone can make people

swing, instead of waltz.

III

Often, many attempt to play a song of their own,

sure not of themselves, but that the piano is an “easy” toy –

the players leave unscathed, but the piano

has been badly played.

IV

Anyone can point out the piano’s different colored keys,

black and white with lines in between.

Any musician can tell the difference between the two,

whites for natural notes,

blacks for sharps and flats.

Any pianist knows that they are more than just “colors and pitches”,

they are beautiful sounds that come together to make something that is so much more.

V

The banal will tell you that all pianos are the same,

that each note emits the same sound,

yet each song holds its own personality- Light and Sweet, Dark and Dramatic-

enticing those of all tastes.

VI

When a fool tries to impress by playing the piano,

he retaliates, accusing the instrument and song –

it must be broken or faulty, but is it rightfully blamed?

The fool didn’t hear the desired sound

he initially claimed.

VII

There are several reasons why one would ignore

a piano,

each one-sided, each unjust.

And just as the poor thing begins to gather dust,

the player returns. But

the piano demands retribution, tuning,

offended that loyalty was forgotten for a brief time.

VIII

Even if the best detective were to scrutinize

every minor detail-

signs of use, misuse, malpractice- he could not discover

the spiritual essence, the soul of the piano.

Was the piano used for Jazz, or did it enjoy playing Beethoven’s Fur Elise?

Over the years, only the piano’s truest companion, know which songs it fancies,

which it does not,

and all in between.

IX

When it may seem that all are alone in the world,

pianists are never truly alone:

their most loyal companion stays by their side always,

as their spirits fall, as their worlds start to shatter

just a few keys touch their hearts –

melodies waft, chords embrace;

everything falls right back into place.

X

Most people say that they love, but they do not truly know

how it all really works.

Many think the piano is simple, a tool,

but it is much more; it is an instrument

that takes years to master and a timeless love.

XI

Time affects not only humans, but our inventions as well.

Time is age, time is experience;

time shows a piano’s true treatment.

Missing paint, the key that cannot play –

the piano shows wisdom in the form of age,

yet it only longs to be played and played.

XII

A relationship of love does not require two people –

in this case, it only needs one.

After years of living with the same sole piano,

her true being becomes apparent:

her sounds, her quirks, her highs, her lows,

but more than anything else,

her spirit.

XIII

A piano, in context, isn’t an it, a thing, or a toy,

but a being, a partner, a beautiful companion,

a graceful woman with a soul as deep as a canyon.

It could take weeks, months, even years to know her,

but she’s yours from the very first note you play.

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