Sunday, October 23, 2016

The Sonata

The fog of sleep began to lift with the opening notes. A few moments later he became aware that he was hearing a piano and vaguely remembered passing one the night before in the darkness. Then his eyes opened and he found himself in a room flooded with the low morning sun. He squinted against the light. The walls were white as were the bed linens which were in a state of considerable disarray and now, he noticed with some perverse amusement, in need of laundering. But she was not there.

And the music continued, melancholy and full of yearning.

He rolled over, slid his legs over the edge of the bed and sat up, vigorously rubbing his eyes, face and hair. Reflexively he reached down, picked up and slipped on his underwear making a mental note of how the bright cranberry stood out against the white everything. Then he stood and strode to the door, smiling to himself again in remembrance as he stepped over the clothing strewn here and there.

The next room was just like the one from which he had just come. White, tastefully decorated walls, light wood flooring, and nothing but windows on the East wall through which the sun was now pouring to magnificent effect. Everything white, or nearly so except for the black baby grand piano at which she now sat playing. The door where he was standing was behind her and just out of her field of view so that his watching went unnoticed. He had never seen a naked pianist before and he found the experience to be a bit disorienting. She sat there in her physical perfection with her long dark hair still plainly tousled by the night as if she had woken with a need that only this music could satisfy.

Eventually the tempo slowed and he thought she would finish. He raised his hand and nearly spoke but she continued. It was the most marvelous thing he had ever seen. Here was concentration and control the like of which he had never seen. She began a series of runs up and down the keyboard which he thought must end at any moment but which continued on and on, each different but all connected, sometimes ending with sharp percussion and sometimes a clever interlude. How on earth was it possible for a person with only the normal compliment of fingers to make such sounds?

And then it was over. She sat still for a moment, her head bowed, catching her breath as the vibrations died away. He quietly clapped his hands. Her head snapped around and she feigned a frown and said “oh, did I wake you?” “Wonderfully” he said and suddenly her face exploded in a laughing smile as if she had just told a marvelously funny story. “Did you like it?” She asked, beaming. His mind raced in confusion as he stood there in front of this incredibly beautiful naked woman and was unable to look away from her eyes. In a half second she was in his arms and they were spinning around. She put her lips to his ear and said softly, earnestly “God, I love that Sonata in the morning”, and then the laughter returned and she said “Come. What shall we do today?” to which he replied “after that? I have no idea.”

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