The Piano Jury
Bright, silent, daunting
Central to my narrowing vision.
The floorboards of all things taunting
My stare returning with derision.
Every seat with its front bare
No staring heads in sight
None but those that at me glare
Basked in blinding light.
Should I try to glance?
Dare I take that chance?
One with pad and pen
One with eyes so stern
Best to look back again
No, not heartburn!
Something was said
Is that the cue?
No only dread
Sweet is the Tune the Harsh Wind Carries
by Matthew Ciesla ’24
’Twas on a venture, enveloped in quiet cold, That a belief quite unusual did take hold: Sweet is the tune the harsh wind carries Of times long past and forgotten.
And to our feeble sentiments it so varies, For ’tis of vast nature’s heart begotten.
Past dark limbs a’sway I did walk No one to laugh nor one to talk. Empty was the scene I eyed,
The soulless, lonesome path ahead. And ’tis when all distracting banter died That a distant melody filled my head.
How unbelievable it seemed to me
To bear such longing in the presence of thee. Though tightly covered holding warmth,
I stopped and moved to lend an ear.
But as suddenly as thou came forth Thou whistled past me, no longer able to hear.
And so I did return
To that same place I now struggled to discern. A path took shape and led me away,
As soulless and lonesome as before.
Past those dark limbs once a’sway
I walked no longer knowing what for.
Thus this venture passed me by
But thenceforth with conviction so think I: Sweet is the tune the harsh wind carries Of times long past and forgotten. And to our feeble sentiments it so varies, For ’tis of vast nature’s heart begotten.
Ode to Practice
by Matthew Ciesla ’24
At times, progressing as if by force,
No enjoyment found therein,
And then as if a steady course
Pushes one to further strive.
So monotonous these tones seem,
Repeated once and then once more,
Yet those well versed continually deem
Their value beyond measure.
O may you, repetition’s dearest friend,
Grant this undertaking some ease.
And allow that these here harmonies blend
Seamlessly as if by chance.
To mastery lead me thus
For crowds and praise unmet, unseen
So that meeting me they see us
And envy deeply our bond.
Of such greatness one can dream,
With such persistence few can clash.
Yet with you it all may seem
Obtainable with passing time.
But such thoughts are only thoughts,
Meaningless on my seat here.
Meaningless to these damn dots
My stare returning fiercely.
So to reality must I return
And leave behind the grandeur thence
And with each bar so deeply yearn
For thy gifts to be bestowed.