William Aide

Pianist. Poet. Teacher.

Schumann: Kinderszenen

Poem by William Aide

OF FOREIGN LANDS AND PEOPLE

Anticipation spires!  St. Petersburg

and travelling there with you,

observing people, seeing foreign lands!

Sitting side by side, cozy in thick furs,

sometimes in the coach you’ll sing to me

a melody from the Kinderszenen

softly, so softly, that I’ll scarcely hear it.

CURIOUS STORY

Tell it all to her again.

“Two enormous snowy owls

tried to learn English—

‘Be sure to wash your porridge bowls

until they’re tinglish—‘

then they flew straight through the hunter’s sights

and blurred his days and whitened his nights

and roosted on my counterpane.”

CATCH ME

One, two,

Sky Blue

Who’s IT

Not you.

Two, three,

Christmas tree

You’re IT

Not me.

PLEADING CHILD

As water puckers at the slightest breeze,

Upturned eyes implore him,

      Please

don’t leave

her wordless wheedle

his heart’s needle.

HAPPY ENOUGH

How explain exuberance,

all outgoing, no inturning,

the gulps of air, the radiant face,

steps in skips, improvised dance?

Happy enough to be learning

Her world becoming a lyric place.

IMPORTANT EVENT

Bursts the room, little courier

swaggers firm, fate has kissed

him—“I’ll not be a warrior,

I shall be a” (blurt announcement)

“CONCERT PIANIST.”

DREAMING

The Horowitz Encore

Of Vladimir’s rubato twitch

some wag was overheard to say

“more trauma there than träumerei”.

Hepburn in Song of Love

Katharine’s Clara stressed simplicity

and played it straight for royalty,

Robert’s request when he was dying,

or some such kitsch.

Cinema/Celebrity distorting,

poetry reporting

inner voices, arching theme,

Schumann’s lucid dream.

AT THE FIRESIDE

Our evening tales are gentle,

shocks in the plot are easy

to absorb, endings sentimental.

Family stories draw us near

enough to the leaping fire.

KNIGHT OF THE ROCKING HORSE

Vimy, pumping, full of glee,

Knight Rupert kicking it—

Look at me!

ALMOST TOO SERIOUS

At the Metro Zoo

Stoic, vulnerable giraffe,

innocence inducing smiles;

this young one must be ten feet tall.

Emma never thinks to laugh.

He “huddles” in the teeming rain;

we hurried but we had to stop

to read the posted sign ADOPT

ME. Emma’s wet smile shines.

“O I want to do that! But my Dad

wouldn’t  like it.”  Solemn face,

almost too serious, somewhat sad—

(fervent Emma, full of grace)—

“He won’t even let me have a dog.”

Rose-sweet gravity agog.

FRIGHTENING

Horribilis Gririfax,

brat-catcher,

wraith of autumn’s equinox,

baby-snatcher,

fables Robert read to them

serve delicious dread to them.

CHILD FALLING ASLEEP

This is the very last

of the day’s miraculous hours

sealing the world as a good estate

arms keeping faith fast

        closing dusting doors

    to the dwindled O

of sleep.

THE POET SPEAKS

They will leave all too soon.

They were clothed in my music.

They will alter, discover new coats.

Though I feared they would die,

my papillons fill me with hope.

They will hover in the wind.

They will hush me in their dreams.

Schumann: Kinderszenen

by William Aide, piano