chords notebook 3


What is the exact moment

I’d return to

If possible?

So many times

Need to be changed

Like not saying

“I do”

But now

In my oldness

The key to happiness

Lies in wood and strings

So if I could go back

To 8 months after

My sixteenth birthday

The day I said,

“I’m quitting guitar lessons”

I’d think

I’d persevere

I’d be a guitar player

In addition to hack writing

Beloved blogetry

I’d compose

I’d stop smoking and sing daily

I’d learn all those chords

I would

I would do

I would do what it takes

To get over that

Learning curve

Vision of me then

Long black hair

Freshly ironed straight

Almost to the waist

Yet not pretty enough to be

A performer

But smart enough to understand

Music tames the sadness

That savages the psyche

And who knows

Maybe I would have written

The Grammy song of the year

Deciphering musical notation

Acquiring the discipline

Dreams require

But it is today

And in celebration of

My newest

A baritone ukulele

D, G, B, E

Guitar chords!

I’ve written a


Whole new set of chords

Baritone ukulele

Bridge to a guitar…


baritone ukulele june 2017


© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGES: My chord notebook & my new Baritone Ukulele




  1. If I could, would I go back? If so, why? No matter where I’d start from, it would mean changing everything, thus living two parallel lives. Would I stay with the violin then? Would I really learn to play that piano? Likely, it would be the accordion that would win out. I’d live my fantasy, the flighty, wild, free music maker, and compare myself to the hard, straight, logical, practical, reasonable successful “me” I chose to be in this life. Would the twain meet somewhere? Would they accept and understand each other? Your poem brings up some very interesting question, especially today as I leave for my trip to Fort McMurray on a one-month volunteer house re-building tour of “duty”. A journey of a thousand miles, (it’s a bit more than that, actually) they say begins with a single step. So, another of many single steps tomorrow morning at 5:00 AM as I start up the van… and go. Van Gogh! No, I don’t think I’d choose painting…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful poem and ukulele, too: I’ve been thinking of getting a baritone guitar for awhile now.
    Maybe you just weren’t ready when you were younger, but you’re surely ready to make music now. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, and yes, I like your suggestion about not being ready in the past! Hope you do get the baritone guitar. As soon as I learn my chords (and as long as Amazon has affordable instruments) I’m going to see about a 4-string guitar. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “Long black hair, freshly ironed straight.” … Way back when, my curly red hair was ironed straight. 🙂 If I could go back, I’d be 16 and paying more attention to writing than boys.
    Love this, Clarissa. It touches my heart. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A beautiful soul baring piece. ❤ So many great lines–Music tames the sadness/That savages the psyche. Recalls Violeta Parra's Volver a los Diecisiete 'To Return to 17' (I think Mercedes Sosa sings it better.)

    Liked by 1 person

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