Tuesday, October 16, 2012

short story - The Song

Her fingers lightly brushed the keys on the piano, sometimes pressing, sometimes not. Aimless and distracted she let the soft discordant sounds swirl and settle, waiting for... what? The right sound? The right moment...

Suddenly memories swirled out of the brief lull of quietness her mind indulged in, and the scattered notes of the piano began to coalesce into harmony and rhythm. Without thinking melody poured from her lips. The memories, like ink, emerged to write themselves into lyrics. The song was born and she felt herself give in to it. Grasping for a pen she scratched out the creation, aware, like so many times it had happened before, that the gossamer thought could burst and shatter before becoming something permanent.

But there, she had it. And methodically began to play it again and again, etching something ethereal - just a thought, just a sound, something intangible and brief in time - into something rooted. Fixed into psyche and onto paper.

I wonder what he would think if he could hear this, she thought almost emotionlessly to herself, as if the tempest of music she just spilled forth briefly drained her of the feeling. For the moment, it was outside of her. Ridiculous, that I would write to share, but can’t share it with the muse.

The spell broke, and she looked up, suddenly aware of the present; the sound of the cars passing outside her window, the hum of the fridge as its motor kicked in. Someone outside in the hall closed a door and turned the key, locking it. Soft padded footsteps faded from hearing as they walked away, keys jingling faintly.

Her hands went to her face and she rubbed it between soft palms as an exhale of breath huffed out of her.

I could post it online. He might see it there, she thought to herself. 

Shaking her head she laughed softly, her head dropping to the side.

Right, that’s not at all obvious.

She leaned back, Do I care?

Her eyes drew back to the words written on the messily stacked pile of papers that perched precariously on one edge of the digital piano, an old torn off sketch book cover masquerading as a clip-board.

Reaching forward she lightly she brushed the surface of the paper with outstretched fingertips.

God, I’m such an idiot. She whispered quietly to herself. How can I still miss this? Knowledge. Emotion. What a bitter fight until the end.

Clapping her hands on her thighs she stood up, the finality of the sound loud and abrupt. Despite the depressive state the song emerged from, she felt a sense of completion and gratitude, a strength that always seemed to emerge when she wrote. She switched off the piano and the amp it was connected to, and walked away.