Watching Rachel Barton Pine Play her Viola D'amore
Amber Cecile Brodie
November 16, 2013
The stage reaches out in great slabs of wood
as she stands perfectly at the center,
her yellow hair curling against the wooden
instrument tucked under her chin, even
her chiffon dress folds over like flecks of gold
in water. I imagine her left leg underneath
the skirt as she adjusts her weight mid measure.
In all my research I cannot find what it is made of,
but something in me believes it is also wood.
Perhaps the same type as the resilient violin
that trapped her between two metal train doors
and dragged her body down the tracks, knotted
her left leg and split her right knee. Yet, she
stands erect, swaying between her right elbow
making halos of sound, and her left fingers tapping
the fingerboard, speaking to the sympathetic
strings beneath, which whisper tones all the way to me
at the back of the hall. So I imagine her leg carved
like her viola: two flaming swords snaking
up to the blinded cupid on her scroll, because
there are only thirty known people in the world
who can play music from this instrument, and she
would be the only one made out of the material
that she rests against her hip, as she takes a bow.
About the author:
Amber Cecile Brodie received her MFA in Creative Writing at Fresno State University and recently moved to Sonoma County, California. Her poetry has been featured in Mud Season, Glassworks, Foothill: a Journal of Poetry, and others. Amber's passions include playing her violin, making poetry, and teaching.