The girl had an unusual talent. She could make noises with her mouth, like a door creaking open and slamming shut, or like an old man huffing up the stairs. When my back was turned she’d do it: the sound of breaking glass or something. Tall for her age, I thought. Why she wore such dirty white tennis shoes I couldn’t understand. You’d think a girl her age would opt for something prettier. Look down and you got pale freckled ankles cut off in dirty canvas, like she’d just crawled across a muddy lawn. Curly brown hair, silver braces with lime-green rubber bands, careful to tear the corner from her notebook and fold her gum inside before she started to tune.
She was a horrible violin student.
“Uh huh,” was her answer when I asked if she was happy with her progress.
“Amy, do you think Kabalevsky would be happy?”