It was so long ago, this thirteenth year of my life, that I dare not speak of memories. A few weeks ago, my mother gave me a piece of piano music I had written at that age.
I can remember the old piano that it already was; it now resides in the basement of the family home, totally out of tune. It was already a hundred years old when I sketched notes on it.
The found manuscript has three small pieces. Simple major chords and probably wrong here and there. The table of contents on the inside cover announces three pieces: Reposante, Irène and Quatre mains. However, the manuscript comprises the first two titles, while the third is entitled Jacques.
What surprised me more was my writing style for that age. My signature was already in large waves that prevented access to my inner world, a signature all the more expressive than mine fifty years later, which still has its walls but few incursions into the depths.
I have little memory for life. Some are elephantine scribes; my brain is more selective, made of more or less classified present moments, sediments slumped on the silent bed of my impressions.
Made of repetitive chords, mostly naive, these pieces betray what I still seem to be: a fragile soul surrounded by pride, a voluntary heart, already concerned with protecting itself from the wounds that life imposes.
I am not Pisces ascendant Cancer for nothing. I have Jupiter and the Moon in Sagittarius, that’s all, madame, without forgetting Saturn in Capricorn, Saturn, the schoolmaster who thinks he’s Confucius and who doesn’t hesitate to make you feel old. And then I have Venus in Aries, very high in the sky, the fiery artist, the bumblebee lover. Finally, Mars in Gemini, the willing to do everything at the same time. Good at everything, therefore good at nothing and vice versa. I forget Pluto and Neptune. But that’s for another story.
I was, of course, pleasantly surprised to find this pianistic desire. I have tried a lot in my life, and I have explored some passions that are still a bit mine.
Music, photography, writing, loves, work, work.
One of my aunts recently wrote that she had reached the winter of her existence, and that’s a nice way to think about the cycle of her breaths.
Sometimes I should remember more and not be so quick to throw the past away. I retain very little of my existence, perhaps too busy trying to grasp the present that nevertheless eludes me.
The astrologer in me makes me look more at what is to become, a reminder here of Sagittarius with its arrow pointing to the sky and Capricorn cultivating the soil.
I am composed of traditions and revolutionary ideas. But as a worker bee, I am far from my queen’s throne, a stranger to proper honours, swimming against the current of a river in hopes of laying my eggs upstream.
I have the privilege of having my parents still alive. In my aunt’s words, they have become wintry now, but their presence still warms my veins.
It is no wonder that fifty years ago, I offered them a few tentative chords. The love of quiet people is not a symphony, but an earworm constantly played in the arena of our certainties.
I could definitely throw away this worthless manuscript. It has made its way to me as if it needed to knock on my door one last time. But then I have to keep singing, changing, and being the caterpillar suffocating in its cocoon, ready to die once it has flown away on its wings while intoxicated by the danger of being randomly caught by a bird or a car headlight.