General Poetry posted February 16, 2015 Chapters:  ...15 16 -17- 18... 

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Free Verse

A chapter in the book Free Verse Collection

The Conductor

by tfawcus

A ripple rises as the lights are dimmed
that grows into a crescendo of applause.
The great man appears.
An Emperor Penguin,
he sweeps across the stage
and mounts the podium
then turns,
surveys his audience,
and nods acknowledgement.

The scene is set. His baton raised,
he holds expectant silence in the air,
then gently coaxes murmurs from the violins,
a rising susurration of bees set free.
He suppresses them
with a gentle downward movement of his hand,
turns his pointer to the larger deep-voiced strings,
demanding their masculine response,
an ominous drumbeat of rising sound
that enforces interplay with melody.
He draws music forth
with an outstretched hand.

The tempo quickens to the strident shudder of his jowl.
He turns a white-tipped laser to the centre of the pit.
It strikes, exploding brass, timpani and a kettle-drum
before an opening blossom of cymbals
stops their breath.

Majestically, he cuts the air.
Great swathes of sound escape,
marshalled by his rhetoric into ranks.
His eye is wild, he leads the charge
as if on horseback,
the rise and fall of his shoulders
mimicked by a rippling surge
across the silken blackness of his back.
He cuts the sound away again,
severing its roots with silence.

A single flute dares defy him now.
It mourns the melody with keening liquid notes.
The maestro turns
and coaxes once again the strings,
drawing from their amber hearts
a waterfall of sound
cascading from Olympian heights.

The final notes ascend.
They float like butterflies returning to the gods.
The audience erupts,
washing the magic away
in a torrent of sound.
He turns, bows low,
acknowledges the thunder of applause,
then is gone.

The orchestra subsides
like puppets who have lost their puppeteer.
Exchanging pleasantries, they pack their bags for home.
The symphony is done.


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Image credited to by Valerie Morrison, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
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