Sunday, November 11, 2007

The Music was Mine

I stab the straw into a concoction of ice and whiskey as I slowly gather my confidence. Each biting sip of the straw warming my vocal cords making the music within me begins to build. My name is called. I rise from my chair to the cheers of my friends and random applause from faces that I will never see again. My eyes sparkle and my teeth shine in my smile as I take the beat-up microphone. I can smell the swirling smoke of the cigars around me and smell the musk from the alcohol sinking into each patron's veins. The music begins.

I close my eyes letting the opening measures in their time absorb me. Facing the crowd with the power in my abdomen I open my eyes and send my voice echoing into the cold brick walls around me. The sound system picks up the depth of my vibrato as the faces of each person who has suddenly stopped what they were doing, look up and locate the creator of the song. It is my moment under the bright lights standing strong on the knotted wooden stage below me unafraid and uninhibited. Senseless.

There are no words on the screen, no written notes to follow. This is my arrangement. This moment is mine.

At the highest point of the song I feel my voice open its wings and begin soaring above and beyond. I don't see the rundown walls, air swirling in smoke and the flickering bulb in the corner threatening to go out. I only feel the music coming alive in my soul and pushing itself outward into oblivion.

As I finish my melody the euphoria I was held in is replaced with thunderous applause and cheers. People who don't understand the music enough to live it but yet can appreciate it. I am left standing alone again. I am abandoned in the reality of the world that I left for only that brief moment. The moment the music was mine.

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