What I want is to have your fingers
Play my tune
We’ll play a duet
You on black keys, me on
What I want is to hear
Two melodies chasing fire
Intertwined and I want
Balance between give and
What I want is to inhale
Your music and exhale
Turn your blacks to whites and
Sing in all your dawns
I want to hold this note
Until it fills my world
Four hands divided by two
Sprawl across bass and treble and the space between.
Four hands means
Twenty fingers moving in tandem and all for
Play passing the parcel with one line of notes surging through these
There is no room to breathe because these
Four hands have used up all the air, and
Any extra beneath the blacks.
Four hands acrobat across ivory
And the distance from the
First to eighty eighth key doesn't seem like an ocean anymore.
All four hands don't always play at the same time --
You rest while I run and draw a melody into the atmosphere.
One hand writes poetry and two make a song but
Four hands tie a thread around staves that tell stories that never existed.
Can we please carve four bars of music under the bench of this
Return when we have four hands to play them to life?
How to Leave a Note
What matters is how you leave a note
A musical note, pressed down by your fingers, hammer to string to sound, will echo what's in your head while you play it
So accuracy first, because you want to get the right sound
Then phrasing and dynamics, less mechanical (less thought, more feel)
Then, a moment before you lift off, before an end (break or pause)
How do you want to leave?
Do you want to
let this note linger in the air, only two sounds then -- silence and music
Marcato, you know you'll be remembered
Dolce, caress your listener into the finale
What's in your head when you play?
Listen for the sounds between your playing
Between your fingers when they're lifted up
Who plays when you don't?
The important thing is to allow your note to sing its goodbye
How the air is punctured
Punctuated by percussion
The important thing is to know when the note has sung
The important thing is to know when to let go.
I live in the space between sound
I live where you can't hear the sound of your heart beat
I live in pause and rest
I live between the staccato
Between the very legato
I live in the place after inhalation
I live between the notes you don't listen for
The corners you ignored when you thought you were listening to the melody
I live between the movements of a symphony
I live between flick and swish
Above air and under ground
I am everything you cannot hear
Under the air inside your flute
Between the hit of the hammers
I dance over your strings
I live where you cannot find me.
Morning sunshine hugs my bones
Light that trickles in slowly
And then drenches
Alive, and hot
But a love that melts in my mouth
Tickles the tops of blades of grass
Plays between my hair, sunshine
I wish I could pour you into a jar and keep you close
Burst through my blood
Caress my skin
Reaches out to hold me, sunshine
I am safe in your arms.
You are an Era
You are an era
And I am a tourist, reading
A history book about you.
I went through the several phases --
Old school rock,
60’s jazz and retro
The wars that made you.
Worn out, ripped jeans
The extinction of polar bears,
The invention of sliced bread
I cut my finger on the edge of your last decade
I long to stay behind.
Let me dance my
Victory dance around the anarchy that crumbles
Rubber band arms stretch far out
Dismantle this machinery of misery, let each bolt fall loose and scatter
I will never feel this way again.
Squelch and grass below my untravelled feet,
I see the world in the ink of the sky.
No vastness of blue
No expanse of green, no depth of your mud eyes will be as
Large as my insides.
Fireballs curl around
Moulded into melting sand
My skin unravels and sinks into
I’m trying to be mindful. Imagine a body filled with wide, brown eyes, searching for secrets. Imagine a hand yearning to feel a drop of sunlight on its palm.
Now look at this – a large bowl of stars, casually sprinkled onto the sky that you’re looking at. So casually, they drop into your body. Sparks, melting into your bones. Are you mindful?
Listen to me. Drink in my words with your ears. Feel them sink into every small corner that has silence trapped inside. Feel that song mix with your blood. Listen to me. Are you mindful?
You’ve run out of railway stations. There’s no time left to pack your bags, so drop that train of thought inside your mind and fill yourself with right here, and right now. Are you mindful?
The Economy of Movement
I learnt about the economy of movement in a yoga class at school. It was written in our textbook. It told us that each physical action of ours must be deliberate. I was fascinated by the simplicity of the idea: do not move more than you need to. Not a flick of the wrist, more than necessary. Just the right amount of footsteps while walking. Catch myself playing with my hair, as I often do, and bring my arm to rest. Try to stand with my feet firmly on the floor. Feel my tongue pressed against the top of my mouth, and allow it to drop. I am moving, but there is something that isn't, and I can feel it. I am still, but in motion. I can also hear it -- the economy of movement is like a red light in my brain. There isn't a traffic jam of thoughts, up there. I can feel my fingers pressed against each other, warm. I can hear the fan whirring above my head, the breeze dances above my skin. My insides are working while my body is still. I inhale, wait, then exhale, and my heart beats like a well oiled metronome, keeping time as I move into the next moment.