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The Church Organist

The churches his mother brought him to as she tried to find her place in this country were small and leaning and the old women of the choir always cried. He was never smart in reading words in books and his voice was tiny and coarse from silence, but he mouthed the sounds of the hymns as he held his mother's thin hand, listened to her voice so rigid with belief. The organ seemed to swell out, swell in: deep, fluttering chords pushed from lungs of canvas and wood. Country voices, city voices filled the domed windows with light. Roads never end: his earliest lesson. But Sundays come as in orbit. And organs, organs never stop breathing.

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