Author's Experience: Synesthesia

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I always pictured myself performing in the world’s largest and most beautiful Church. The marvel construction of the perpendicular gothic architecture always brought me peace and solace. A single glaring ray of light shines down upon my face through the coloured pattern stained-glass window. Taking small steps towards the sacred altar, I suddenly lock eyes with a majestic piece of craftsmanship, my use to love; the organ. After Papa died, I vowed never to touch an organ again. We were both heavy musical frisson addicts, we were able to experience the goosebumps when we listened to powerful music. Papa always told me not everyone could experience this phenomenon. Addiction and arousal, that’s what we felt. It has always been a regular occurrence for me since my earliest memories. My frisson used to be so intense that my eyes would well up uncontrollably. I used to feel the musical chills but not anymore. I could no longer bear the sight of the organ but, would Papa be happy with the hatred I had towards our love?

Staring intently at the organ, I felt a sudden attraction towards the organ lying there miraculously. The organ was like a magnet, I wanted to repel but it’s “magnetic elements” attracted me. Surrendering myself, I slowly walked towards it. Placing myself onto the red velvet cushion seat, my small feet hover across the polished floor. Sliding my slender fingers across the triple keyboards, the organ was radiant and reflected the light easily. It brought me warmth once again as it did years ago. The perfect contrast of the smaller charcoal keys and ivory white keys rested between each other. The light shone through the still, silent darkness and all the attention is on me alone. The Church is a full house; not of human beings but angels and saints from the paintings, statues and stained-glass windows. These spirits come to life as they watch me intently in the rows of wooden pews. Their mellow stare encompasses my body, telling me to play.

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Taking a deep breath, I stare at the familiar music sheets before hesitantly lowering my outstretched and tight fingers above the ivory and charcoal keys, I began to play. The pressurised air produced a melodic note through the series of pipes that were organised in scalelike rows. I thrust my fingers down as the keys pounded the bottom of the keyboard. The harmonious notes sounded strong and resonated throughout the Church. Leaning over the big machine that emitted a sweet and sad sound, I continued to play gracefully with more power than I have ever felt before. The organ was a divine, elegant beast that was brought to life by my swift fingers. I felt the emotion of the music seep into my body and spread throughout my veins.

A sudden foreign sound welcomes my ears as a harp begins to play. I can’t see it, but I feel it radiate every cell of my body. The enchanting, mesmerising tune rang through the golden Church. The soothing, warm vibrations from the harp gave me shivers as we played in complete symphony.

The melancholy melody sang out like a lone wolf crying out to the moon. Precious moments like this is what I yearn the most. That missing puzzle piece in my life has completed the set, and the organ completed me. Everything feels so right, I feel at peace. I wasn’t just playing music; I was pouring my soul onto the song. I felt the saltwater coming from my deep violet eyes, pouring down the contours of my cheek as I missed playing my other half. The sensational feeling of my fingers dancing across the ivory and charcoal keys renewed me, it was my awakening desire, a musical frisson. The wooden masterpiece that was once withered and accumulated with dust, leather tore, and the dull ebony keys grew dull had now transformed into their radiant glow.

Looking up, I see the smiling eyes of the saints and angels watching me. As I continue to play wholeheartedly, I suddenly lock gaze with a man’s eyes. His eyes are a mirror, I see myself. His eyes show me my beauty, something I never allowed myself to see. He shows me who I am meant to be. The melodic song comes to an end. There is comfortable silence between us, and I don’t break our gaze. Staring into his soul, I speak to him, mind to mind, heart to heart. Tugging my lip upwards, he mirrors my actions.

Suddenly, he is gone. I take the moment to breathe in the emptiness of the Church and his pungent smell of pine. Pulling myself off the velvet seat, I walk down the polished steps, through the empty audience. My heart feels light as I enter a new world. I have always been trapped in my own emptiness, discouraged after walking in the complete darkness of uncertainty. My love for the organ has given me the first glimmer of hope. Through music, I was able to travel through difficulty in the darkness. I am awakened in the calm, peaceful light at the end of my final destination. My new world is aglow and I am complete.   


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