88 Keys MAG

September 23, 2012
By Anonymous

There was once a time where I thought self-harm was the only way to express my feelings. I had been overwhelmed by everything, and nothing, and during all those times a different object poked at my skin. Sometimes it was a knife, or a shark tooth, and at one point, I used a pair of scissors. And when I had nothing to use, I'd scrape my arm hard across my braces. I believed in nothing, in emptiness. This belief was shattered when I found music.

Piano is weekly for me; it has been since fourth grade. ­Although everyone around me admired my talent, it never seemed to interest me. During the days where I didn't have a lesson, the piano sat untouched; bits of dust collected on its surface. I knew how to move my fingers across the keys, but I didn't know how to play. I didn't know how to use my emotions to my advantage. I tried forcing myself to channel my pent-up feelings, but I could not find music. Music had to find me.

It was one normal night, and I was emotionless. But I sat at the piano and let my fingers glide as they played a ­familiar piece: the first movement of Beethoven's “Moonlight Sonata.” Letting my mind unwind, I listened as if it were someone else were playing, not me. The last note resonated throughout my living room, and I realized I had perfected the piece without even trying.

It was another normal night, and once again I sat at the piano. This time, I played with no music in front of me, I let my fingers dance and tickle the keys. The piece played on and on for minutes after minutes, stopping with that final chord. I was involuntarily smiling; I never thought I would be able to do something of this caliber. I was a long way from fully ­utilizing my emotions, but I was getting there, step by step.

And during another normal night, I sat and once again ran my hands across the keys, absentmindedly singing along, fitting an old poem to the melody of my improvisation. After two minutes, I stopped and realized that I had composed an original song. I had learned to fully play the piano.

After those days, cuts rarely scarred my arms, and no dust slept on the piano. In no way was I extremely talented, but I was talented enough to appease myself. I had not found music. Music had finally found me.

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