This I Believe

Sayre - Briarcliff Manor, New York
Entered on June 6, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: creativity


In this highly formulaic world, there is little wonder left. Every particle of dirt or ray of light is broken down into an equation describing how and why it moves or exists. The glimmer of awe in a toddler’s eyes as a favorite uncle pulls a quarter out of his ear fades as he ages. But not all enchantment is yet lost.

I believe in the magic of music. Music has the strength to conduct any emotion into the heart of a listener, whether it be anguish, nostalgia, glee, or enthusiasm. Personal connections are formed to any tune that graces the eardrums.

My adoration for music far surpasses that of tapping my foot every time a familiar tune comes on in the local coffeeshop. Melody is my solace, harmony my drug, chords my indulgence. The magic of music relentlessly binds me to my piano. I do not know the physics of music, precisely how or why the sound waves form when I tickle those keys, nor do I really care. The hidden strings encased in mere planks of wood with that strip of ivory and ebony are of more importance to me than a hoard of precious gems.

My piano has a personality for every emotion that I feel. When I am feeling invigorated and want my fingers to fly I can pull out some Ben Folds, Wicked, or a fast-tempoed Sonata, while devious, “Anitra’s Dance” is satisfying, and when down I plunk out “Clair de Lune” or some Coldplay. Its diversity is unmatched, and within six and a half minutes I can go in my mind from a downtown club in Ragtime to a stage in front of thousands as a member of Radiohead. When playing my mind goes entirely blank, and I read the notes without even thinking. It is the only time when it is not necessary to think, but rather plunge myself in, becoming entirely submerged in the music. My mind is off sailing through the air, diffusing out along with the ringing of the tones. When I am handed music, I read it like a novel, but instead of images forming in my brain, I can actually hear it, and friends often catch me playing the air piano absentmindedly, not even realizing until someone points it out with a chuckle.

Though not all can pick up an instrument and create a tune, everyone is captivated to some degree by the undeniable magic that is music. It is one of the forces that unites us all as people, though it is often difficult to see past that which divides us.