Jared Singer – “Why I Will Never Learn to Play the Cello”


Why I never learned to play the cello. Because some things are holy enough that they deserve to only be done well: love, cello, forgiveness. There is not enough bend in my whole body to twist a note like that. I am far too much engineer, too gear heart to hold anything
without trying to improve it. The cello does not need improving. Maple does not need improving. The gentle draw of bow across string
reminds me far too much of breathing to try and do both. I have always envied those willing
to ineptly tackle the holy: high school sweethearts, seminary students, new cello players. I never had to be told that faith
and music were synonyms. Dirt finger, callus hand,
gear heart that I am, I knew from the first moment
I heard the cello chase all the other instruments into echo that I would never learn to play one. Instead, I build the music halls. Instead, I engineer the music. I cannot bend, but it is the cello
that lets me stand tall. Thank you. (applause)

29 thoughts on “Jared Singer – “Why I Will Never Learn to Play the Cello”

  1. I swear every time I see that something by Jared has been posted, I get excited. No matter what the poem is about, I am always in love with everything he writes.

  2. I’m a cellist, and this poem moved me to tears. It’s so beautiful. Thank you

  3. JARED AND CELLO, TWO OF MY FAVORITE THINGS
    I almost wanna stop learning now ❤

  4. Omg thank you for this!! Ive been playing cello for 5 years and this poem is amazing

  5. Every poem of his I've heard is amazing. I need a book of his.

  6. How does a poet become apart of something so dope like? Like can we submit video or something?

  7. does anyone know if jared has a book for sale?? would love love love to buy an anthology of his poems.

  8. i was in an orchestra for 3 years and played the cello and this really made me feel something. i quit because i wasn’t in the right spot in my life and thought i wasn’t smart enough to learn more and this truly touched me

  9. For the hearing impaired:

    "Why I never learned to play the cello

    because some things are holy enough that they deserve to only be done well
    love, cello, forgiveness
    there is not enough bend in my whole body to twist a note like that
    I am far too much engineer, too gear heart to hold anything without trying to improve it
    but cello does not need improving. Maple does not need improving
    The gentle draw of bow across string reminds me far too much of breathing to try and do both
    I have always envied those willing to ineptly tackle the holy
    High school sweethearts, seminary students, new cello players
    I never had to be told that faith and music were synonyms
    Dirt finger, callus hand, gear heart that I am, I knew from the 1st moment I heard the cello chase all the other instruments into echo that I would never learned to play one
    Instead I build the music halls
    instead I engineer the music
    I cannot bend
    but it is the cello that lets me stand tall.

    Thank you"

  10. I'm trying to learn the cello this summer. We'll see how it goes

  11. the draw of bow across string, it reminds me FAR too much of breathing, to try and do both

  12. This is interesting when I heard it the message of this poem means to me is music of poetry combine

  13. "because somethings are holy enough that they deserve to only be done well"

  14. "Instead, I engineer the music. I cannot bend, but it is the cello, that lets me stand tall."

    I love how he combines this with a commentary on love and forgiveness. We may never be able to do these things perfectly, but we do our best to help each other in creating a symphony.

  15. I’m going to be a senior in high school and I have been playing cello since fifth grade. This poem is gorgeous

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