The Guitar Lesson
My father once gave me a guitar, I proudly displayed for all to see,
He taught me how to play, creating the music of my life for no one else but me.
Time taught me the world would be less confusing if everyone spoke in one tongue,
Indeed, that exists through music, every note played, every note sung.
But my life more closely resembles this instrument I choose to play,
Music through sound, telling you exactly what I want to say.
This guitar can be used to speak words without moving my lips,
Or a street performer happily sharing song, just playing for tips.
Moments in life mostly resemble this old guitar,
High and low notes change quickly, without moving very far.
Played by ear or sometimes with sheet of music to follow,
Some are electric, others shaped round and are hollow.
The neck is divided by frets, much like time separates all life’s events,
Each space a different note, each memory past or present tense.
Different chords played many ways, it really does not matter,
One fret up makes it sharp, and one down is flatter.
Like life, a good song depends on how much time you put in,
Never perfect, yet sounding better with practice and discipline.
The chords are like humans, making rich tones as my fingers move around,
No matter the brand of guitar, they all make a similar sound.
How it’s played is the difference, neither right or wrong,
Picking the melody instead of strumming, making it sound like a different song.
But the song is the same, masked by each individual technique,
To live life is to celebrate another’s difference, each special and unique.
It took this long to realize this guitar’s lasting impression,
Learning that anyone can understand me through music, was my most valuable guitar lesson.
D.T. Hudson 2018
Guitars, and music in general, have become such an important part of my life. The holes in my office walls where I missed the studs trying to hang pictures are covered by these works of art.
My dad got me into playing guitar at a young age. The good old 50’s and 60’s music like “Wipe Out” and “Run Around Sue”. He and mom were hard-working farmers. I was the pain in the ass middle child that moved out soon after graduation. I had no farming aspirations or abilities whatsoever. Regardless of who I am or what I did with my life, music would always be a staple.
After moving to Arizona to avoid these cold winters, he really took to finger picking and playing gospel. I can not tell you all what a joy it is when he and mom come here (in the summer of course) to visit. We sit and play guitar, talk music, and simply discuss guitars in general. Considering play hair band rock, our duets get rather unique. However,these special times have truly become one of the best parts of my life.
I am a drummer by nature, but I have always loved to play guitar. Unlike a piano, the notes not only go vertical on the neck, but also horizontally. There seems to be unlimited things you can play and there is always constant room for improvement. Am I any good, hell no, but I have fun trying.
The amazing thing about music, these guitars in general, was that no matter how different of people dad and are, we will always have this in common. For me, that is one the greatest things in the world.