Peter Halstead reads "Piano Maker" by Peter Halstead
Peter Halstead’s poem “Piano Maker,” performed by the poet. “Piano Maker” is the sixth film in Above Strands of Earth: Adrian Brinkerhoff Poetry Foundation at Tippet Rise, a film series produced in collaboration with Adrian Brinkerhoff Poetry Foundation.
Directed by Matthew Thompson and shot at Tippet Rise Art Center.
Gnarls and boles, whatever woodwork words
Can turn or blur to use, to glue, to growth
Of board or bed, I know: I use their surds
And darkened boughs like fingers, so that both
Our hands are heard together on the keyboard
Bark; no sounds but branches rise
To leaf through breezes in the scattered cord
Of sheaves and limbs, inking in the dyes,
The ivories of silence on the evening’s rose
And shade; twisting up the wires of a day’s
Old sun and funneling the body’s splay
Of music into crowns of maple and god knows,
I wind up nature’s miniature keys
To play out, on a bed of vines,
The tune of my own trees.
Peter Halstead is a pianist, photographer, novelist, and poet. His six-volume piano series, Pianist Lost, can be found at pianistlost.com. Bug the Great is the first volume of his novel. He has published seven collections of poetry: Sea Sun, Blinds, Poems of Earth, Face Your Dreams, Postcard Poems, Fluorescence, and Sublimation, with Reflections forthcoming. Peter studied piano with Russell Sherman in Boston and Irma Wolpe in New York, and organ with Charles Courboin at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, New York.
Peter co-founded Tippet Rise Art Center and the Adrian Brinkerhoff Poetry Foundation with his wife, Cathy. As he says, “Poetry fills in the blanks, the spaces between the lines. It’s the only way to describe things which can’t be described.”