The Duet

Kaylana Sareen

We shared the bench,
We shared the keys,
We shared the music
That floated through the room.

Covered in sweatshirts, sweaters, and scarves
We played the duet.

My sister’s hands, stiff from the cold,
Still flew across the keys, as powerful
As the biting wind.

I stayed in time, tapping my foot,
While my fingers desperately tried to catch up to hers.
Every chord, every note, every rest
Was meant to be in sync- our hands were meant to be in sync.

We played the ebony and the ivory
As though the music we made
Was the reason for why our lungs filled with air
and our hearts beat in tune.

Time after time we pushed, we practiced, we perfected.
We played the duet.

But the pages were only so long and the days so short,
And soon the duet had come to an end.

Time and time again we sat beside each other,
But our hands could no longer move as one.

Dissonance replaced harmony, frustration replaced reflex.
We could not play the duet.

And so the days carried on in silence.
No music to be heard, no beat to be tapped.
But this could only last so long,
For our lungs needed air
And our hearts needed a tune.

And so, every now again,
I will listen to her play.
Her hands like ghosts above the keys.
Her fingers pale as ice.

And covered in sweatshirts, sweaters, and scarves
I hear her play
The remains of the duet.


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