Gauche Peds

I’m in love with dead composers. Beethoven would have been my good friend. He would have been able to hear me. I am certain.

I did not start my music career when I was three, a prodigy in an organdy dress, legs no longer than a folded yardstick, feet capped with reflective Mary Janes.

Au contraire. I wanted to dance, to fly. To get pink satin toe-shoes, soar into the rafters and float, until a passing prince caught my eye. I had no idea what I’d do, once I found him. Still don’t.

Mme. Collinette, was a ballet mistress digitized from Central Casting, complete with tight bun impaled like a barnacle on the nape of her neck.

My third lesson was my last attempt at foot control.

“Gauche peds, votre fille fait deux gauche peds,” Mme. Collinette slammed her crooked cane into the hardwood planks that spread across the studio.

Left feet. Two, instead of one. That was all my mother needed to hear. My mother growled something I couldn’t make out then marched me down the steps, across the flagstone courtyard, into MIss Hood’s Piano Studio.

I didn’t come out for twelve years.

When I did exist, I got to grow my nails. And escape into rock groups and piano bars.

Merci, Mme. Collinette.

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