Last Refrain #13507

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The Story

This is the long view down an abandoned and weathered piano keyboard that had been sitting outside for years. It was done with a lens set to a very shallow depth of field to focus on the foreground grit and let the rest go into a complete blur. There is only a small area or slice of sharp focus, but enough. This image is mostly about overall mood and not so much about detail.

This shot was actually Plan B because the micro lens was left at home that morning! I never did return with it being pretty satisfied with this effort instead after all.

Surprisingly, I found the piano carcass standing abandoned in the far corner of a small country truck stop not far from home. I saw it there off in the distance beside a line of parked trucks when I stopped there for breakfast one morning. The piano must have ended up there years ago after a midnight dump-and-run mission to simply get rid of the thing, which can be surprisingly hard to do. Yet, a few guys and a truck and it’s easily done if you’re simply going to dump it outside somewhere. It had been outside in the weather for unknown years, slowly coming apart at every seam into large and small pieces. In retrospect, it was only a short distance from someone’s house parlor to this inglorious end in truck stop mud.

The heat and thaw of the seasons of rain and snow had turned this weathered piano keyboard into perfect decay. The plastic covering on the white keys was flaked and chipped off at random. Likewise, the black keys were split away at the root and jumbled into irregular patterns. Adding to the decomposition, the thin finish veneer was lifting away from the underlying baseboards in waves like the ocean at the beach. This discarded piano was a sight of seemingly suspended decay, but like its cousin Rust, Decay never sleeps.

Here’s an image of the same piano the day it was found. It’s called Pardon Me, Your Veneer Is Showing #14737 here. I’ve been back to the piano several times to try different things along the progression of decay and got some interesting and surprising things. As an example, have a look at the very unusual brainteaser Mother Nature’s Greatest Hits #13926 here.

Location: out-of-the-way Munster, Cambria County, Pennsylvania. Image and text © Andrew Dierks

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