Thursday, March 31, 2011

"The Piano Lesson," by Andrew Wallace Chamings

In the voice of a child, some breathtaking short stories have been written. One collection that comes to mind is Steven Millhauser’s In the Penny Arcade. Chamings, in this story, captivates the reader with an intriguing first paragraph that begins: “It was the start of the year and the end of the day.” The story sweeps through past time and near past never leaving the deepening moment of the piano lesson as Dale, the imaginative boy, ploughs through “Moonlight Sonata” under his teacher’s guidance. The story offers many moments of concrete detail such as biting into holly berries that result in “A dry and cold bitter juice soaked into the back of my tongue.” The effect is a story implanted in the reader’s mind. For a magical read, try it here at Prick of the Spindle.

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