Welcome to the latest installment in the Operation Poetry Dare series. If you would like to receive future posts via email, click here. And click here if you would consider “liking” my Facebook page. Thanks–I appreciate you!
“It’s easy,” my son says. “Anyone can do it.”
I watch as he sits at the piano, music flowing from his heart and soul straight through to his fingertips. He’s taken formal lessons and been trained in music theory, but sometimes the music just seems to pour through him as though he’s unable to stop it. He’ll sit at the keyboard and compose his own melodies or improvise on a theme from a movie score or popular radio. Sometimes I think he was born with a jazz brain, and he comprehends all of life through its filter.
My son’s piano teacher, who is a very different sort than Gertrude who labored in vain to instruct me, tried to show me how to improvise on a simple piece of music. She handed me a book which promised to crack open mysteries about chord inversions, left-hand patterns, and various rhythmic styles.
I tried adding little flourishes here and there to songs like Camptown Races and Yankee Doodle, but for the life of me, I could not make myself play notes not written on the page. My brain just doesn’t work like my son’s. His teacher told me I needed to go home, pour myself a glass of wine, lighten up and try again.
I’m wondering if there isn’t such a thing as a poetry brain.
Operation Poetry Dare continues over at Tweetspeak. Won’t you join me there for the latest update? Or click the button below and begin your own experiment: