by Jordan Altman
I play guitar, not for others, but for myself. Found in a pawn shop, sitting at the back covered in dust, wanting to be rescued, needing its voice to be heard once more. I purchased it, after haggling for 5 or 10 minutes. When I brought it home, I cleaned and restrung her. Playing her, for the first time, the instrument resonates noise, that when emitted from the acoustic hollow body in combinations and sequences, forms chords and melodies. When I sit alone with the shaped wood and 6 strings of nylon, I am able to express my thoughts and feelings. If upset, I tremolo a hard riff, and my anger fades away. While sad, I play the blues, which calm my soul. A happy melody will always bring a warm smile to my face. My acoustic is not a mere instrument for the ears, but a therapeutic device for my emotions. With it, I can create anything I want, for myself or others. I can make love letters, apologies, jokes, and prayers. I may not have a lot of possessions, and I don’t consider my guitar one of them, for it is a part of me. When I play, I do so with eyes closed, as my fingers know the topography of the fretboard to the millimeter. I never break a string, for such a wound would hurt myself as well. I may play the acoustic, but it’s the guitar’s music that plays on me. To me, the instrument is my confidant, my friend, and myself. To me, it is independence, it is confidence, and to me it is freedom.
IMAGE: “Guitar and Clouds” by Michael Creese. Prince available at fineartamerica.com.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jordan Altman is a Geologist who has work from the Land of the Midnight Sun to the Canadian Shield. Recently taking up creative writing, his adventures within reality are now being matched by those of his imagination.