Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Song in Prose

Linking up again with Kiki's "Not So (Small) Stories".  This week the topic is "song".  I had planned to try and get super creative, but after having a very difficult week (losing my job, questioning my direction, interviewing, temping, trying to study for my upcoming classack!) I decided to try some fiction yet again.  This particular piece is one side/perspective of a conversation written as practice with another writer I did recently (hence the lack of her dialogue).  So read on, my friends!  Hope you enjoy and will forgive my lack of energy this week.


...He followed her out of the kitchen, glancing at the floor as they went to make sure he wasn’t still dripping, and chuckled at her comments about a lack of musical talent. Drew could hardly imagine what it would be like to voluntarily choose not to play an instrument, but then not everyone was wired the same. Piano was what he’d stuck to, but from the time he was a small child any instrument he picked up could be easily mastered. On the other hand, the last time Drew had attempted to take a picture everyones heads had been cut off and the image had been horrifically blurry… clearly not his forte.
When his dark eyes landed on the piano in the sitting room he couldn’t help the grin that spread. It looked almost exactly like the piano he’d grown up with except in slightly better shape. One hand slid across the slick surface and Drew shook his head at her comment about it just being an upright. “It’s perfect,” he said. “Just like the one my grandma taught me on.” He eased down onto the slick bench
, always somewhat shy about playing for an audience, and rested his hands on the keys.

Like some sort of ancient spell settling on his muscles, Drew began to play without much thought. His fingers needed little prompting from his brain as the two moved in sink and his eyes slid shut, the tune a soft, minor melody that flowed from the dark clouds hovering above, the kind of music Southern Gothic writers might have set their stories to had they become plays or been put to film. It moved low, suggesting at times that it might brush upwards but never quite reaching that peak, and sweeping on like a low rushing wave. For a moment Drew slipped away from his surroundings, disappeared from that room and from his circumstances, caught in a tide he could not control and would not have sought to, hidden in a space of gray peace he rarely experienced outside of his music…a space Genny called his happy place.

That thought brought the lids of his eyes up and focused his gaze back to the girl standing next to him and he offered a grin that preferred not to meet his eyes. “Sorry,” Drew said. “It’s easy to get caught up…” His hands continued to move over the keys, but much more quietly, the tune shifting to a major chord, the pace quickening. Easy as breathing…or at least as it once had been. He could play for hours and never tire, never grow bored, this was his paradise, his safe haven.



Kirsten Oliphant said...

I love getting to see glimpses of your fiction! Thanks for sharing this. My favorite part was where you talk about the Southern Gothic writers, because immediately I could HEAR the music, and I think that's something hard to convey in words. Really nicely done!

dayebydaye said...

I'm sorry it was such a rough week Courtney! But I am thankful that you wrote. I grew up listening to my sister play piano and I get lost in the listening every time. Thanks for capturing this love for music!

Kristi Bothur said...

I love listening to someone sit down and just play piano. I can't play without music, so it is a gift I truly admire in others.

blestbutstrest said...

Beautiful imagery :). I miss hearing my daughters play the piano. I'm sorry you've had a rough week, and I hope that writing this piece has given you solace. Thank you for the beauty.

Larks said...

What beautiful imagery. Like Kiki, I also really liked the bit about the Southern Gothic writers. It really made the music come to life.

I'm sorry you've had such a rough week. ((( hugs )))

Carol Bovee said...

This was beautiful. One could not guess, from your writing, that your week was so bad. I hope it helped to write! When I was young, I used to stand behind my lovely older sister, brushing her long brown hair while she played her music. That's a special memory for me and you revived it!

grrfeisty said...

so beautifully written! and this is a scene i would love to see/hear in real life. pianists are magical. i wish i could play. :)

grrfeisty said...

i *also* wish i could write like you. :)