Birthday Song with Piano

Forget this aging maw
of yellowed keys,
more flat than sharp,
beating wrong notes
on twisted strings.

Ignore the film of dust
on the wobbly bench
overstuffed with music
no one plays or even
cares to hum.

Avoid the bad keys,
the ones that stick
and stutter, the ones
that are ashamed of
being silent too long.

Play bold arpeggios
until this weathered body
fills its cracks and fissures,
remembers (slowly)
how to breathe and sing.

Donna Vorreyer HeadshotDonna Vorreyer’s first full-length poetry collection, A House of Many Windows, is now available from Sundress Publications. Her work has appeared in many journals, including RhinoLinebreak, Cider Press Review, Stirring, Sweet, wicked alice, and Weave. Her fifth chapbook, We Build Houses of Our Bodies, was just released from Dancing Girl Press, and she also serves as a poetry editor for Mixed Fruit magazine. Visit her online at