poem by Rubina Daneschvar, ’17

A man’s fingers caress the keys of a piano by the window
A crowd gathers, hypnotized by the man
His fingers move up and down the instrument
In his mind an orchestra appears and plays him a lullaby
Outside the night is fading as the first glimpses of sun appear
Carriages are heard outside but the horses are entranced by the music
The music builds and his hands are firm but light
The spectators resemble sculptures that are enchanted with the notes
The women’s faces are pale and lifeless
A cello starts in the man’s mind and the deep notes echo in his head
The song gains volume but the notes are drawing to a close
His fragile hands move around the piano for a last time and the audience starts breathing again
The women’s fans start beating to the sound of the keys
Men start to finish their champagne and the man playing the piano…
opens his eyes for the first time since the start of the song
But before the song draws to a close
The spectators start to depart one by one into the carriages
For in a way, the song was much too sacred to acknowledge