No Longer Stoic

June 2, 2008
By Daniel Sweeney, Mason, OH

As a prim, stoic man reluctantly enters the hall, the music begins. Enter the soloist. The dark tones of a soprano saxophone reverberate off the grand arches of the concert hall, enveloping the audience members in a thick blanket of solemnity, like the warm comfort of a mother’s arms. The audience listens attentively, a pensive aura evolving. Another voice, a higher one, enters with a sweet sound, a solo piccolo, followed by the remainder of the ensemble. The music flows across faces—both players and audience—softening them, evoking emotion only manifest through pure love. A decrescendo: the musicians run their bows slowly against the heart-strings of the audience members. The twinkle of a tear glistens on the stoic man’s eyelid, as memories of years past stream back in an overwhelming wave and crash upon him. Slowly, somberly off—reflection. Softly, the ensemble interrupts the silence with flickers from a candle of passion. Rise, crescendo, more, more—the climax. The band moves in unison as their heart cascades, like wine from a golden chalice, the ambience ebbing and flowing over the entire hall, tears welling in the players’ eyes—the last time they will perform together. A glorious chord resounds throughout the hall, as the musicians leave nothing in their souls hidden from the audience. The stoic man’s face floods with brine as he feels the music within him. Years spent. Friends remembered. Religion revived. Music is proof of God. I am no longer stoic.

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