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jennifer steinfeldt  warren

June 25, 2004 at 6:01 PM


I asked the doctor how long
between standing up and
passing into the white cheerio head
slowing down and drifting to the floor...
Blood pressure closer to zero than one hundred
-how long do I have?

About seven seconds, he said
after a minute contemplation
I was still standing-
helicopter fuzz ears
floating into the ring
and deaf blindness of almost
slumping to the floor.

Well-if I have seven seconds
each time-
what can I play in seven seconds?
Not Beethoven.
Not Bach.
Perhaps half of an arpeggio
I do the math.
Not even three octaves.
At least, not down.

So, GM gets some good practice, hey? I tell him,
In first position..
before I hit the floor.

It didn't occur to me until days later
that the violin can be played sitting down.
Maybe I'll be a 17-second Perlman.
A million times a day.
Three octaves of GM arpeggios-
sounding like a closer to zero pro.

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