he leaves the office, loosens his tie, gets in the car
and doesn’t turn on the radio.
there are voices enough in his head,
collected hour by hour,
angry, hurt, alone or lost
threatening, today, to leave the safety
of his mind, to meet his core.
he needs them away.
he enters the house, leaves his phone
by the door — it’s empty
dinner would be next, but it isn’t
and he sits down at the piano
wishing to play.
his hands on the keys, choosing
something to play, a moment to begin.
it starts slowly, a hesitant prayer
from someone absent too long
and grows, and grows
drowning the weary in a bath
he leans into the all but last notes
slamming them into the keys,
arguing the necessity, necessity, of playing this way;
until he gives in, finally, to stroke the music
to an end.
he sits there,
whole minutes exist and pass
while he stares at his fingers resting,
still curled atop the keys.