what do you do when an idea latches onto you?
what do you do when you need a piano to take apart?
it’s as simple as that.
i spend so much energy being embarrassed by myself.
apologizing for myself.
but, i ask you: what good is a crazy idea
if it’s not harebrained through and through?
so i did it:
i asked on facebook if anybody had an old piano
they were looking to get rid of.
and within 3 hours,
a long-time friend i seldom see
answered back that she had one i could have
if i’d just pick it up.
and she lives less than 10 miles from me.
we picked the piano up on a
fine sunday afternoon,
and i can’t tell you how quietly
excited i was.
i’ve been craving an adventure,
an adventure that fit my
pocketbook and my geography.
this was big.
in the 3 weeks that passed between
when i first saw the piano
and when my husband
could go with me to pick it up,
i imagined getting the piano into the shop
where i’d take pictures, lots and lots of pictures,
and keep a journal within arm’s reach,
ready to capture whatever
insights bubbled their way to the top.
what i looked forward to most of all was
taking the lid off.
i’d remove it
with great reverence and tenderness
then peer down inside
to see what secrets
were hidden there.
i’ve long wanted to know how the pedals
on a piano work.
to know how one sustains the sound
and another dampens, softens, quietens the sound.
i’d have my answer.
symbolism and metaphors
were already ripe for the harvesting.
i’d take the lid off
then work my way
through to the pedals,
taking it apart from the top
to the bottom,
from the inside out.
my husband backed the truck
up to the shop double doors,
getting as close as possible.
it’s a spinet piano,
not nearly as heavy as a baby grand
or that old upright player piano we once owned,
but still too heavy for me to be of much help.
i offered to call my brother,
but husband said no, no need.
he’s an engineer, you see.
he knows all about leverage
and things like that.
he got one end off the truck,
sat it down,
then asked as he walked out of the shop,
“you’re going to take it apart, right?”
and with that,
drove the truck out from under the piano.
the front cover fell off.
some small decorative, accent pieces
the pedal mechanism
“that was easier than I thought it was gonna’ be,” he said,
delighted with his accomplishment and ingenuity.
i excused myself to come upstairs
where i would remind myself that
literally, he was right:
i was just going to take it apart.
when i went back down to have a look,
with hopes of seeing that it wasn’t really
as bad as i’d first thought,
he proudly told me about how he’d just
taken off the lid
and beckoned me to have a look down
“isn’t that an amazing sight?” he purred.
he’s still the one.
oh yes, he is so
still the one.
just so you know.
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