Rush-hour on the A rain. A blind man staggers forth, his cane tapping lightlyown the aisle. He leans against the door,raises a violin to chin and says I’m sorry to bother you, folks. But please. Just listen. And it kills me, the word sorry. As if something like musicshould be forgiven. He nuzzles into the wood like a lover, inhales and at the first slow stroke, the crescendo seeps through our skin like warm water, we who have nothing but destinations, who dream of light but descend into the mouths of tunnels, searching. Beads of sweat fall from his brow, making dark roseson the instrument. His head swooning to each chord exhaled through the hollow torso. The woman beside me has put down her book, closed her eyes, the babyhas stopped crying, the cop has sat down and I know this train is too fast for dreaming, that these iron jaws will always open to swallow a smile already lost.How insufficient the memory, to fail before death.how will hear these notes when the train slides into the yard, the lights turned out and the songlingers with breaths rising from empty seats? I know I am too human to praise what is fading. But for now, I just want to listen as the train fillscompletely with warm water and we are all swimming slowly toward the man with Mozart flowing from his hands. I want nothingbut to put my fingers inside his mouth, let that prayer hum through my veins. I want crawl into the hole in his violin.I want to sleep there until my flesh becomes music.
Ocean Vuong