I used to find my dog’s hair in bird’s nests,
soft layer woven inside the twigs.
I release hair from my hairbrush out my bedroom window.
My son practices “The Swan” transposed for viola.
Shift to third position, then to fifth.
You want to hear just a bit of the slide,
near the end of the note, his teacher says.
Don’t touch the neck. The hand moves as a unit.
String instruments, where pitch is found by memory,
offer the most choices for musicality,
are the most expressive, most like the voice.
I print out the music, finger the notes on my forearm.
You have to have a plan, Mr. Barnett says.
I haven’t touched the cello in months.
The house is large, the ceilings high.
I run from room to room
laughing at the sound of my shoes.
No one is dancing, only me, twirling on the wood floor.