came down the stairs to the lower floor, silently opened the door and entered
the hall. She should not have been here without asking her mother. But she
longed to and never asked. They would be in the kitchen.
woman smiled hearing her coming. “Come on, come on. Grandpa will show you
today.” She bent down to receive a hug.
he show me?” asked the girl.
honey, he will play for you. Don’t you, grandpa?”
smiled at her.
“I do not
know, whether you would like that.”
that, grandpa!” the woman said indignantly. “Hasn’t she this lovely voice?
Don’t we always tell each other, how fine she sings? Four years old. There are
few children which sing like you, my love.”
off-key.” the girl declared.
the woman averted. “You should not say that!”
teaches you.” explained the man. “She teaches you all those lovely songs you
sing so well. Be grateful!”
reflected that. “I am grateful.” She said then. “But still she sings off-key.”
“As you can
learn it properly from her, it doesn’t matter, does it?” the man insisted.
smiled and nodded. “It doesn’t matter. – Will you now make music, grandpa?”
stood up ponderously. He went to the next room. The girl followed him in the hall
and then curiously watched what he was doing there. He opened a case and took
out something of wooden elegance, laid it on his left shoulder, gripped back
into the case and removed a long stick from there. He began to play the
stood there and listened. Her ears did, her eyes, her whole body. Her mouth
opened, but remained silent. “That is heaven.” she thought.
it!” the woman exulted. “You love it!” and took the girl into her arms. “Isn’t
it lovely what he can do?”
The eyes of
the girl filled with tears.
heaven?” she asked. “It is here.” and pressed her hands on the region of her
the woman smiled. “Music is from heaven. And you can feel it there.”
her nonsense.” the man said. “It is a violin. Shall I play more?”
said the girl. Left to herself again by the woman she felt lost into beauty.
not tell your father.” the woman said.
begged the girl.
to go.” the man decided. “You didn’t ask your mother, did you?”
play again?” whispered the girl.
father is coming. Hurry up, love!”
upstairs, trembling, confused. Another secret she had to hide.
are.” the mother respired. “You know, you shall not go downstairs in the
afternoon. He is coming.”
sat down in a corner and began to play with some toys. Frightened. Would he
He did not.
Not this time. So the secret was safe. Safe for long years.
grandfather never played for her again. He died. The grandmother sometimes
showed her the violin and she felt herself standing there. Listening, feeling
heaven in her heart. Then the grandmother passed away, too. The violin was left
in a corner of the living room behind the TV. Sometimes, when the parents were
out, she fetched it from there, opened the case and caressed the form.
“You are my
baby.” she whispered then. “My lovely baby are you.”
She went to
school now. Fortunately there was a lot of music. When she was singing, she
tried to imagine how this would be played on the violin.
you not sing in our choir?” the chaplain asked her after one of his’ lessons.
to shy to confess, that she dared not to ask at home, shock her head and
like to have you there.”
She took a
heart and spoke about it to her father.
nowhere.” he answered. “You stay at home.”
she learned by accident, that the violin teacher of her school was disposed to
take new students. Interested pupils were invited to read up on it. She felt
the announcement like a shock. But then door to heaven stood open and she
couldn’t help to look into.
was a woman, old, and when the blue eyes met her own she knew, that she would
have to take courses. She falsified her time-table and for one time in her life
asked for a bit more pocket-money. As she always was alone getting up in the
morning and nobody had any interest in the violin, the easiest thing was, to
bring it to school.
began. With senses of guilt she stroke her first notes. Conscience-stricken she
joined them to plain melodies. Depraved she felt by discovering everything she
take single lessons.” the teacher told her after half a year. “And you should
try.” she said and trembling went to confess the whole matter to her mother.
could practice at home, when her father was at work. Hours and hours she spent
with her instrument. “You are my love.” she told it. “You are the only love of
doing good now.” said the teacher. “It is a pleasure to teach you.”
And it was
more what she learnt. Here was something she was allowed to love and which
cared for her, soothed her, called for her, encouraged her, protected her.
father asked her about her plans for future, she told him, that she wanted to
not study.” he declared. “Your sister will. She is much more intelligent, much
“Yes.” she agreed.
“But I want to play violin. I do it already. I have to learn more.”
stared at her.
“You will do
no dead-end job on my costs. You will learn something which enables you to
“But …” she
said and recognized that there were no more buts. Her father was ashamed of her
connecting herself to such an elusive thing as music. He always had been
ashamed of her for many things. Her mother felt very uncomfortable that she caused
these feelings inside him. The judgment was spoken. The sentence was to be felt
She found a
job which indeed enabled her to maintain herself. So she left the judgment and
the sentence, the feeling of guilt and the shame … and the violin. She knew she
would never again have that much time to practice as much that she could be
“I have to
live, my love.” she said. “I have to stay on my own feet. Here I would have to
die because they are so full with their own lack of love.”
remained silent. And as it could not speak to her for this last time, it could
not tell her, that she was about to loose love, too.