Regular Poem: The Utilitarian Piano Player

9 Mar

The Utilitarian Piano Player
plays rather

steamrolling sonatas,
plowing through preludes,
attacking accompaniments,
digging up études like a hog with truffles.

The Utilitarian Piano Player
excels at accelerando and good posture, but
her fingers move with the preciseness of a typist,
not the glamour of a painter;
she’s more chiropractor than masseuse–
more dermatologist than Mary Kay.

She’s bound by duty–
to the science of piano:
someone’s violin solo
wasn’t going to accompany itself;
someone couldn’t figure out
the tricky baritone line to the choir number;
someone’s tap number makes more sense to the tune of “Tea for Two.”

It’s not that
she’s not

She is.

But not in some esoteric, artful way.
At least not in the piano realm.
She’s actually
in real life
a lyric soprano, or
retired from teaching elementary school music, or
a choir master,
The Utilitarian Piano Player
does these things espressivo and cantabile and allegro;


The Utilitarian Piano Player’s
piano playing
commands rather than cajoles,
instructs rather than illustrates.
It can be
choppy and formulaic and not
very pretty.
But one must remember–
it is
after all.

3 Responses to “Regular Poem: The Utilitarian Piano Player”

  1. silverscreenings 9 March 2013 at 12:48 PM #

    This is my fave part:
    “…someone’s violin solo
    wasn’t going to accompany itself…”


  1. Piano Music Yanni Mozart And Chopin News From Britain | Stirring Trouble Internationally - Around the world - 10 March 2013

    […] Regular Poem: The Utilitarian Piano Player […]

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