The rosin dust on the violinist’s
oldest violin is white,
like the chalk beneath the words
where children learn to write
the equations that will define
the arcs and angles of their work.
Rosin is the trace of a hundred
thousand notes, silent, no spark
remaining but the sense that all
has come to rest: the scratches
on the indestructible stands,
the shabby folding chairs, matches
in the composer’s tweedy pocket.
His music, a spent and silent rocket.