In Love with Hot Cross Buns

You follow the sound of the piano down the hall to the sun room. It’s so beautiful, enormous and filling you to the brim with emotion that you can’t quite define. He sits there on the black bench, eyes closed, long delicate fingers dancing on the keys as if with a mind of their own. You’ve never seen something, heard something, felt something so beautiful. Sitting there in his t-shirt and jeans, playing the piano like an old friend. 

He comes to tune the piano every so often. You’ve never heard him play, and he’s never heard you. Your mother made you start playing when you were six. You fell in love with it right away. But it’s been a love-hate relationship since you entered middle school. You remember the first time your piano teacher played hot crossed buns for you and you had a similar feeling, that it was the most beautiful thing you’d ever heard. You’ve laughed about that moment since. The humor of a six-year-old in love with hot cross buns.

Recently the piano hasn’t been cooperative and you have only become increasingly angry at him. You even slammed his fallboard at the end of your last practice session. You can’t understand why he isn’t working with you. It feels like he too will leave. Like mom.

You find yourself with your back against the wall of the hallway outside the sunroom. You slide to the floor. Tears stream down your face as you slump against the wall. Your heart plays to the tune of the soul emanating from the piano. Like the boy in the other room is playing your heart strings to the tune of something new and untouched. His soul fills the music, traveling from his fingers to the keys and out with the notes. Sorrow, joy, struggle, release, and love swirl between the notes filling the space like dancers on a stage meant just for them. You close your eyes letting the music sweep you away.

“Hey, are you ok?” You startle as the music is interrupted by a silhouette in the doorway. You realize the music is no longer in the air, just in your ears, ringing loud and clear. The silhouette crouches down and the boy that created that music reaches for you. He brushes tears from your cheek as you sit there unable to speak. “You ok?” He asks again. “Yeah. Better now,” you whisper as you look into the soul that made your heart sing and brought you back to life.

You are now a sixteen-year-old, again in love, but this time with a new melody that feels as old as time.