Tuesday 7 June 2016

Morning in Vienna
Midsummer Piano Lesson

My teacher lies on the floor with a bad back
off to the side of the piano.
I sit up straight on the stool.
He begins by telling me that every key
is like a different room
and I am a blind man who must learn
to walk through all twelve of them
without hitting the furniture.

I feel myself reach for the first doorknob.

Even when I am not playing, I think about the piano.
It is the largest, heaviest,
and most beautiful object in this house.
I pause in the doorway just to take it all in.
And late at night I picture it downstairs,
this hallucination standing on three legs,
this curious beast with its enormous moonlit smile.

First and last stanza of
Billy Collins' poem "Piano Lessons"
"The Art of Drowning"
University of Pittsburg Press

Images © by Merisi

-> Billy Collins at Poetry Foundation


  1. What a lovely room and, if I mistake not, a Steinway baby grand. So nice to have a two-seater piano stool too. Yes, music lessons, some had them and some missed out.
    My brother and sister had them for years and I had just one lesson before we had to flee the Russians . . .

  2. An atmosphere conducive to creating music and poetry!
    I love the curtains that brings sensuality to the throne room where the piano!
    Good week-end with sun !

  3. Never owned a piano in any house I lived in. It might be nice

  4. Wonderful words. Especially the last line; I've never "seen" a piano like that before, but now I do.

  5. A very creative atmosphere it is indeed!! I love it! And wonderful words they are, Merisi! Have a lovely weekend!

  6. I love his poetry, what a perfect meld of words and images - beautiful! (I play the piano so this is especially lovely:)

  7. So beautiful -- words and pictures.

  8. Such lovely inviting images.

  9. Wonderful images! Great match for the poem.

  10. Thank you all for your kind comments!
    Wishing you all a wonderful weekend,

  11. Beautiful poem and photos. That room would be nice to explore, I think.

  12. Anonymous07 July, 2013

    Beautiful !


  13. The atmosphere is so particular, the emotion is tangible. I would not look any more at a piano in the same way...

  14. What a lovely poem. -:) I have one of those in the music room, it is as old as Bilbo on his party birthday but just as sound as ever.

    1. One of my favorite poems by Billy Collins. He always puts me in a good mood.

  15. A fitting poem, and a lovely piano.

  16. Great atmosphere and emotion. Beautiful post, Merisi.

  17. James, Williamsburg, VA08 June, 2016

    Not only is this beautiful beast a Steinway, it is a Bechstein Steinway. I remember it from one of your Christmas photos with the room filled with leftover wrapping paper. Even though I have a Steinway, I am jealous. LUCKY YOU!

  18. Lovely and so very very elegant...

  19. Beautiful, both text and images.


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