An old woman cuts Apollo melons
in half with a machete on a wooden table.
Outside the kitchen in the bar
a drunk piano player stumbles over her keys,
but manages to keep the warm-up beautiful.
Her hair is black and damp from the humidity
and it hangs down like a curtain covering her face.
She didn’t need to see where she was going
her teacher always told her she played better
when it flowed straight from her heart.
Sometimes though, she couldn’t find
a place to start and just sat there while
everyone drank and watched her,
waiting to be entertained.
She couldn’t read charts and never tried,
but if she heard something she could play it
before it was over.
That wasn’t her business though, regurgitating
the sounds of other players, she wanted
her music to be hers.
The old woman approached her with small
wedges of melon on a tray, the young girl
took one away and with a single bite
she heard what she would play tonight.
She saw the drowsy beaches of her past
and knew what they would sound like
if they had the means to sing
what was so clearly there beneath
the fading sunlight.

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