The Violin Should Not Be Played

The Violin Should Not Be Played
"Some various shots of my latest violin based on the 1716 Strad Tuscan-Medici...I should mention that my uncle carved the chinrest out of macassar ebony. He really did a nice job on it. It was a little nerve wracking when I had to drill the holes for the mounting hardware. I didn't want to mess it up!" Image via Inland Coast on Flickr. 

by Liz Bastos.

only look

not played

only look

petite, ‘twixt chin and shoulder it snugly fits

its curves.

Cradle them, burnished, glowing, wood, etc. Esteem it, sure,

this stringed “instrument” first seen in Northern Italy in 1530

Who started

the playing of it? Horribleness. Backward Renaissance.

It starts bad and

worse gets. It’s for looking  only. You don’t cat gut & horse hair a bow across David because you’re curious.

So pretty to look at, someone thought,

— a 16th-century Italian — terribly curious

about this little cello

compared to good-sounding ones that are right-sized for music

“Che bello

Mi chiedo come suona questo bellezzo

I wonder how this beauty sounds


awful wonder. To play all the pretty things

made by the old village Tuscany luthier, do we really have to?

Whose feelings would it hurt to not?

The start of symphonies

first violin the Leader, and

sawing away

after the Leader

everyone, the whole pit

throwing themselves after this thing

that should not be heard

Liz Bastos is a laminated pastry lover and a Northern Virginia middle-aged mother on Twitter as @Liz__Bastos and on Medium @croissanthaver.