The Tuba Player by Antonio Urias

January 2, 2014 Comments Off on The Tuba Player by Antonio Urias

In a city by the sea, on a street corner slick with rain, a man with a tuba plays the last song of the day. It is a slow melancholy song that rumbles out into the empty street. The puddles ripple. The man puffs his cheeks and blows. No one listens. No one is there. In the distance, the sound of cars rushing about their business. But no cars pass the tuba player, as he plays his last song. At his feet is a Tupperware container collecting stray coins and rainwater. But the man plays on. Note by note. This is his song. The song he has always ended with, since he was six years old on a stage at Philby Elementary, his little knees knocking and his heart pounding. Since that long ago day, the tuba has always been his first love, his vocation, although he tried his hand at accounting for forty-odd years. But here on this street corner, in a city by the sea, he plays his tuba from dawn until dusk, every Monday and Wednesday, rain or shine or hail. He is a tuba player, and that is all he ever wanted to be.

The song finishes its last rumbling note. He pauses. Letting it reverberate through the empty street. Letting his audience of wet concrete, brick, and mortar savor the moment. Then he calmly puts his tuba away, collects his folding chair, and his Tupperware, and makes his way to the tram station. The concert is over. It’s time to go home.

© 2013 Antonio Urias

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