The Untuned Piano | Charles Rafferty

The wires go slack at different rates until my favorite song sounds as though I’m staring at a beautiful woman with somebody else’s glasses. The room in which it waits has been arranged: There is a white rug that makes me worry about my cabernet, there is a grandfather clock that loses a minute every two weeks, and there is an old map of Europe, the year of which is 1750. Almost none of the countries remain on the map, and those that do have bled beyond the borders I have always known. The piano has become something I have to dust, and my reflection in the wood makes me think of being underwater — the blurry depths, the discordant breath of the risen. Still, it will always be the perfect place for a vase of flowers, no matter their state of freshness.

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