David Herbert Lawrence
Piano (1918)

 

Softly, in the dusk, a woman is singing to me;

 

Taking me back down the vista of years, till I see

 

A child sitting under the piano, in the boom of the tingling strings

4

And pressing the small, poised feet of a mother who smiles as she sings.

 

 

 

In spite of myself, the insidious mastery of song

 

Betrays me back, till the heart of me weeps to belong

 

To the old Sunday evenings at home, with winter outside

8

And hymns in the cosy parlour, the tinkling piano our guide.

 

 

 

So now it is vain for the singer to burst into clamour

 

With the great black piano appassionato. The glamour

 

Of childish days is upon me, my manhood is cast

12

Down in the flood of remembrance, I weep like a child for the past.


2. vista: a view of especially great depth.

5. insidious: operating stealthily with evil effect; sinister.

10. appassionato: to play with great passion and vigor.