Tap Them Keys
Scot Walker



Dad’s been driving me nuts! Christmas is coming he said, and this one’s going to be a doozey. I hate it when he says that. It made me feel like I’m living in the fifties. But a doozey of a month it was: each day for the first week, dad handed me a note. This is what you must learn between now and Christmas, he said. Memorize each note. But each note was merely a letter or a symbol and not a real letter at all.

On the second week, dad gave me an axe and told me to chop  a cord of wood. It sure made me strong but gave me no clue.

On that final week, he gave me seven keys, some black, some white in two distinct shapes—although the black ones had ridges and were taller than the whites.

Then on Christmas week, dad snuck downstairs and meshed my black and white keys together with the notes and cords and when I came downstairs in my batman underwear with my eyes glowing, he said: Voila, son, I’ve created your own piano—aren’t you glad you learned the keys, chords and notes?

Sit, he said. Tap the key. Tap each one. Gently. 

And I played Oh Come All Ye Faithful and dad smiled.

I wonder if next year, dad will give me the tap dance lessons I’ve asked for . . . perhaps  on New Years. . . as long as I keep on tapping!

First published: May 2018
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