Con Brio

J. Remus

for Katrina and Mary Lyn

It is good to have a good ear for music
above the range of most early Saturday
arrivals for estate sale treasures
spilled across the front lawn of the
grand old house set off at street’s end,
No Outlet detouring only those drivers
anxious to get where they are going,
not the two-story, yellow
clapboard house, its mansard roof
and dormer windows, lace curtains
never fully drawn in the parlor,
the piano room Conservatory,
curtains pulled back and tied
into twin smiles for young couples,
their children, peeking in to listen
to the Chopin etudes, Beethoven sonatas,

Levi Williams

until the lady with the red hair
pauses her fingers above the ebony
grand piano and raises her head
ever so slowly, her hands lowering
into her lap, the final chord
suspended still, fading a little longer
as the lady listens to what she knows
one of the children standing on tiptoe
at the window hears and will continue
to hear when the lady’s hair is white,
her piano removed to the front lawn,
the ebony grand in need of that child
now grown, young woman adjusting
the mahogany piano stool, then
touching her fingers to the keys,
as neighbors fingering the price tags
of treasures, pause and sit down
on the grass, seeming to understand
why they have come.

DeMorris Byrd