Ode to my Violin

I. The Immigrant

Languishing in a prison, long forgotten,
the shape of music itself, a broken violin.
My eager hands, outstretch for embrace.
I had longed for you for years, missed you
without knowing, a yearning deep in the soul.
Darkly glowing wood, old, mellowed, unloved.
Born in a Saxony village, generations of travel
to land on these shores, unwanted again,
thrown out when friendships died.
Bridge collapsed, one hanging string,
bow, shredded wisp of a white horse tail.
You lay hidden, cast out, forgotten,
a tramp in a gypsy encampment.

II. The Vow

I remembered you. My blood thrilled.
Ancient wood restored, all molecules aligned,
by the strong hand of the bow.
Your exhilaration echoed beside my ear,
double stopped strings reverberating,
the leap to the high exalting note,
expressing, completing, every wish in my heart
from sorrow at beauty to a wild need to dance.
I vowed to honour you, gave you devotion.
I knew you could sing, sing for me,
by the constant stroke of the bow

III Discipline

Scales, scales, scales, over, over, over, repeat,
scales, scales, scales, over, over, over, repeat.
Again! Become a master, with a gentle hold,
never grip, however strong the heat.
This flower is tender, this horse is wild.
Circle the bow in the jig, keep it bright.
Hold the bow slow and steady, dreaming child,
as poignancy stretches through twilight to night.
Wake me at dawn. To repeat.

IV – The Sonnet

Humming like a honey-bee,
dark throated wood, a deep forest note,
a salmon leaping a waterfall in silver light.
The clear cry of the lark in summer.
Sun on a high mountain, clouds,
a deep pool in a wide sweep of valley,
sparkles, shadows, the whirling dance,
the wild hunt and the flame.
Ecstatic violin. My lifting heart.
All these paths we took together
as I paced the floor, always circling,
unable to be still when you sang.

You kindled a spark in my blood
as sweet as a love affair


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