Breaking The Piano

For Princess Diana, R.I.P.

Things don’t always break
up as easy as anticipated. The metal,
the metal springs at the heart
of it cause all the trouble. Or the wood,
or the keys, not the hammer or
the instrument of destruction. Killing
what we don’t want anymore, or killing
what we want so much, even the
photographers keep a record of the
dying of the music. Running

her to ground in a tunnel
screaming fly motorcycles or sledgehammers
in the underground of some unknown
cellar, things never break up like
we thought they would. How many
to build a piano, how long, how
many to build a kingdom, the keys
of ivory will not play this
tune. A piano song

for the princess, just this piano,
sledgehammers on ivory, this is
how we break, not easy but
hard under the earth, dark tunnels
dark basements dark minds. No one
knew this was coming, not the piano,
for her it was all a surprise, the crash
is the last tune she plays. The sound
of it will ring in dark places forever
long after it is gone. Memory

plays the heart like a hammer, this
is how we play the piano. Hard,
in the dark place, wanting it we break
it down into shatters, then carry
the pieces off into places, put them
in memories where the dust
falls like snow.