old brown baby grand
reminds me of my grandmother’s piano. we would sit together on the bench my legs not long enough to hit the ground and sing songs. old songs like “red roses for a blue lady.” when i was grown she went on this crusade labeling the backs and bottoms of things with our names. “of all my things, what do you want when i die?”, she asked. it was an uncomfortable question. we’d already lost my grandfather and i wasn’t keen on losing her. they’d been solid dependable reliable trustworthy. they’d done simple things like drive me to school and make brown paper sack lunches with funny colored drawings on them. they moored me. they were home. so when it was my turn, i chose the piano. i felt lucky no one else in the family wanted the old thing. now i have to laugh. pianos are for people who don’t move. especially BIG pianos. and it seems that’s all i’ve done in my life. even now. i’ve cleared out the big stuff and have been sitting with the hard stuff- journals, papers i should scan and/or simply throw away, little knick knacks that never made it out of boxes the last time i changed residences. after weeks, i still haven’t been able to touch any of it. it feels as if i’ll disappear if i let go. that my story will end. time to roll the credits and all. i know it’s irrational… these tears that come bubbling up from deep inside when i consider not having made a difference and how a bunch of junk is somehow responsible for doing that… keeping my shadow pinned on. (i’m not peter pan and this is not never never land!)
it’s infuriating. why don’t i just let go? throw the whole mess out and be done with it? ‘cause i know it doesn’t matter that there’s no piano, no ivories to plunk on and remember the good times like it didn’t matter when my grandmother passed. i can still remember changing the pages… her delight and mine as we sang together… her love and joy indelibly written on my heart. i don’t need any stuff for that.