Black is my glory,
Suffering is my story.
I came to you with eyes full of emotion,
Head bloated with ambitions
And fingers dipped in musal magic.
There I was, a speck of dirt in a sea of perfection
And you chose me;
Me with the uncombed hair and the rumpled shirt,
Me with only a few mild strums of the violin at the dead of night as practice,
Me with the mousy mannerism and the fervent wish to remain invisible.
Yet you singled me out and straightened my borrowed tie.
And when you asked me what my name was,
I know you thought my silence was out of anxiety.
But it was from gratitude. Because before now, before then,
I had no name, I had no identity.
I was just another statistic on the screen of your shiny iPhone.
Before then, I was nobody. I was nothing.
Dear Mister Maestro,
These here hands have split wood and pounded akpụ,
Yet when you placed a violin in them,
These here hands became tender enough to cradle a newborn,
And mold pottery.
To everyone else it was just plain strings and wood;
But to me? To me it was my reason to live,
To me it was the instrument instrumental to my inner quietude.
These curved edges shaped my thoughts,
These strings kept my heart in place and beating.
This cushion, my pillow for the many nights spent not sleeping.
This bow became my lips, my teeth, my tongue
These and every note rose to fill the void in my stunted vocabulary,
A divine language used to express every feeling no matter how fleeting.
And this suede black case, enclosed my spirit, soul and body in velvet-lined comfort.
But only for a time,
Because one day the bursary will show me the exit,
From this dream back to my reality.
And when they do, I hope that you keep my memory, that you tell my story.
And when the rich paying clientele ask for your awards and trophies,
I hope that you show them the violin smeared with teardrops.