Poetry by Richelle Sushil
I read somewhere that the phrase ‘tempo rubato’,
When literally translated,
Is Italian for ‘stolen time’.
It’s a music term,
That allows you to take liberties
With the pace of a piece when playing it.
How fast or slow you go is entirely up to you.
You steal a second here,
And give a second there.
Shorten one here,
And extend another, somewhere along the way.
It helps to give the piece more feeling; more intensity.
I’ve never known how to play an instrument.
And you once told me that you took a couple of piano lessons,
But it wasn’t really your thing.
Regardless, I think we were masters of tempo rubato;
Of playing with feeling.
Of giving, and taking time.
I keep all of the seconds you ever gave me
In my bottom desk drawer.
(I like to imagine you do the same with mine.)
Richelle Sushil is a final year BA English student at King’s College London. Among other things, she writes poems about love, memory, & home, and can often be found in the middle of a hug, or on twitter @richellesushil.