A short story

for The Sunday Muse


brotherhood-script.regular (1)

brotherhood-script.regular (2)ou’ve got no friends’ my father said. ‘You need a proper job’. There was no point in arguing. But my fingers were my tools, ivory keys my colleagues and composers my friends. As a pianist I earned little, but it paid the bills.

I cannot describe the feeling I had whilst sitting at my piano upon a stage, notes flying, gliding, hovering, diving. My audience flew with me. They smiled; sometimes they wept. I wept. Such is the power of music.

I played in smoky jazz bars too, a tot of whisky and a cigarette to hand. It was so different. There, my music competed with chattering crowds. I played loudly they spoke loudly; in quiet pieces, they murmured. I stopped and they stopped! But I loved it.

Time took its toll on my overworked hands. I play little now. My piano sits ‘neath a dusty cover in the corner of my room. I occasionally play for old folk and sometimes stand in for the organist at my church. But music remains my constant companion, though now I consume rather than create. It will never desert me, never.


playing piano


 Khatia Buniatishvili at the piano.

Thanks to Carrie for being our host.


25 thoughts on “A short story

  1. Sunra Rainz Aug 6, 2022 / 14:53

    Beautiful, Keith. At first, knowing your usual style, I was waiting for a punchline that never came. Then I admired this little memoir for what it was. Beautiful 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. msjadeli Aug 6, 2022 / 21:34

    The biography of a musician that I’m sure many who make music can relate to. Very few get rich from it, but every one loves the feeling of the magic it gives them to make it and to share it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jim Aug 7, 2022 / 03:48

    Is this a True Story, Keith? Mrs. Jim’s piano will be given away when we downsize.
    She has arthritis that makes her hands hurt. About the same with her viola. My older
    daughter has never had as real job, her music devoured her time. She writes music,
    wrote for and memorized the whole Bible book of Ephesians. Some are copyright,
    did you know you can do that by sending a disk with some paperwork?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. hilarymb Aug 7, 2022 / 09:06

    Hi Keith – delightful story and so appropriate with the image … and I love the comments – cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

  5. wyndolynne Aug 7, 2022 / 13:41

    Love the way the music reverberates through this. Every piece (words, image, music) work well together.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Gillena Cox Aug 7, 2022 / 15:03

    “They smiled; sometimes they wept. I wept. Such is the power of music”

    I luv the companionship of music in your poem

    Happy Sunday


    Liked by 1 person

  7. Rob Kistner Aug 8, 2022 / 08:36

    Really like the image you chose Keith. I ran with blues on one of mine. Nice work… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. writingwhatnots Aug 8, 2022 / 12:00

    Where would we be without our musicians? Lovely reflective story, Keith.


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