Michael Tu // THE VIOLA

Poor alto instrument

The lonely middle child

Shadowed by its older brother

and outperformed by the younger sister


You’re a heavy burden

Resting on my left shoulder

An empty, dry, wooden husk

The butt of every joke


People hate you

They jest, “What’s the difference between

a coffin and a viola?


In a coffin, the dead person

is on the inside”


And yet

Even with the teasing

And taunting and trouble times

I still find your mellow cries

Staggeringly beautiful