Monday 12 April 2010

NaPoWriMo #12 - The chair sang to us like an old music box

The chair sang to us like an old music box

We didn’t mind the chair, it was as it was and there was no changing it.
What really got us was how the whole house spoke in tongues:
cabinets tinkling and string chords echoing through pipes we thought empty for decades.

Even new objects took on the music once we were all moved in: a chorus of trumpets
from the mop and bucket, all quiet like it almost wasn’t there.
None of us believed in ghosts, but as the walls rattled a washboard rhythm
we would look at each other, startled, trying to decipher intent from the notes.

We never wrote it down, never tried to record it. Perhaps we fancied that in the house’s tongues
there was a message of delight through the major chords – or pain in the minors –
too personal for any equipment to track. Like intruders we’d tiptoe from room to room,
cocking our heads at the slightest tune, refusing to hang pictures, play music, wear shoes.

The house, in the end, took its toll on us. Living a silent life
was never something any of us had planned. Now we keep our shoes on and sing.
I still keep an ear out, though, when it’s quiet at night. I’m sure I’ve heard the armchair join in.

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