a l i v e                   

the anticipation

sitting on the stage

bow in hand

but trying to escape

the bow slips because the apprehension of the coming notes is making your fingers nervous

they’re shaking and sweating and crying

they’re shuddering and shrinking and cowering

they ache with a dread but it is a delightful dread

a dread you would yearn for

your fingers will hide forever

you’re never going to get them to stop being afraid

you just have to push them out of their hiding places

force them into the music

it doesn’t mean they won’t still quiver in fear

because trust me, they will

it just means they will be where they need to be and they will do what they need to do

they’ll do it because they dread it

they’ll do it because they  y e a r n  for it

they’ll do it because once it starts, they cannot stop until it is over


your legs will bounce

like the pads of your feet are made of glitter

the energy in your feet is light

your feet, unlike your fingers, are ready

they jump jump jump

they plead for it all to begin

like children waiting for their turn on the swings

they want to feel the freedom of the music

like the wind flying through your hair


c a l m

your mind is a pond lacking ripples

still and tranquil on top

as though the pond has frozen solid

but underneath


your mind is racing

the fish swim around frantically

remembering every flat

recalling every sharp

making sure not one single note is forgotten

because every one of them is vital

one broken link, and a chain is useless

one missing ingredient and the dish is not the same


you may wonder how your mind can be so serene and restless at the same time

I could not tell you for I do not know

it is a phenomenon that no man can rationalize

we just accept it because we know we can’t explain it

consider it a new kind of emotion

the emotion of playing music

a childlike wonder and an elder’s wisdom

the respect that a circus performer has for a great cat

a mother’s love for their child

if you do not respect the animal, it will turn on you

if you do not respect the music, it will not work with you

if you do not love your child, how can you call yourself a mother?

if you do not love the music, how can you call yourself a musician?

music demands passion and reverence

dignity and fervor

feeling and  f i r e



the lights are changing

your fingers freeze in place

your feet have stopped their jumping

you can hear the surrounding heartbeats diminish

a breath is taken in unison and held

every eye is fixed on one point

the end of a simple baton



a gunshot at the beginning of a race

the stoplight turns fluorescent green

everything happens so suddenly

you cannot recall how it began

it resonates through every nerve in your body

the symphony flows up from your feet to the ends of your shaking fingertips

it is so strong, it pushes you out of you body and takes control

your soul becomes the music

right now, you do not exist

the only thing that exists is this feeling

the melody is  a l i v e

you were never living until now

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