She went to a concert last night.
The older man carried the evening through clarinet, alto sax, and the sweet precision of the notes from his flute.
The piano player banged the keyboard, added trills like too many adjectives in a poem, and betrayed the musicality of all but a few pieces.
The bass player seemed afraid of the audience.
There was a furry-haired little boy whose enthusiasm could not be contained by his exasperated parents and she wondered why they didn’t just give in, appreciate, not stifle, his joy.
The older woman beside her hummed along, slapping at her left thigh,
keeping time to the Woman from Ipanema and Autumn Leaves.
Behind her, the shaggy-haired eight or nine-year old unwrapped his candy, the one his mother must have slipped him, as if he was slowly peeling a Band-Aid off a bad cut.
In spite of all that,
thanks to her meditation classes,
she managed to incorporate every sound, welcome it all,
accept what was,
breathing in, breathing out.
She closed her eyes and let it swirl,
the organized melodies from the stage,
the messy soundscape all around and even
the small win for what she deemed her own emotional progress.