There is music in the wind that moves and breathes in the spaces of my soul. It is a song that constantly rocks and cradles the skiff of my heart from one shore to another in the many journeys of my life. I would find myself in the midst of the most perplexing labyrinth, and it has always been music that clears my head and keeps me finding my way back to shore . Its words are the rivers I follow knowing they always unite with the ocean where my boat patiently awaits--like a tiny dancer frolicking with the waves as if calling me to set sail once more to another journey scheduled by destiny but written by me. While children will always be the anchor that keep me from drifting where I should not be, it has always been music that keeps me sailing through the most wicked tempest of the seas. No. Music is not just my refuge. Music is my redemption.
Even when the house is still, as it is right this very moment, there is a musical score playing in my head. It is there whatever it is I am doing, wherever I am in my life. And in the moments where I have no answers to the questions in my head, the volume of that musical score is multiplied by a factor of at least two. With it I am able to stare at my demons, my doubts and fears right in the eye. And through it, I am able to slay them all. Music makes me muster the courage I never even knew I had and pushes me to conquer things I never even dreamt I could. It is the magical potion more intoxicating than any mind altering substance man can ever invent. It can make you feel bigger than you really are faster than you can say Wonderland. Chemical concoctions may reach the innermost crevices of ones mind, but only Music has the power to break into the deepest, darkest alleys of your soul. Other things can make you forget, but Music-- Music will make you remember all the things you are.
In my kitchen, where there is a constant humdrum of action, the fire in the stoves are further fanned by the fire of Music. Generally though, during prep time, the soundtracks are either as aseptic and crisp as Vivaldi's Four Seasons, Mozart's Symphony No. 40 in G minor or something as nerve-calming as Astrud Gilberto's haunting affectations. The music is always the backdrop that frames all elements in its proper places-- ingredients and staff included. During the actual cooking though, the music is hot, dirty and full of lust. (No I don't play dirty raps or that idiotic song Birthday Sex). Think something along the lines of Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis jazz, the kind they play in smoke-filled parlors in some alley in New Orleans. It's gotta be something with so much feeling and soul because that's what happens food meets fire. That music and the sizzling, the hissing and the exaltation from the sacrifice of the spirits of food--these are the only hymns heard throughout the kitchen at cooking time. Well, those and my voice telling everyone to shut up and pay attention to the process. And Music does that to my attention-deficit mind. It makes me see what I need to see and feel what I need to feel in order to experience the process more vividly. It doesn't matter if the experience was happening in the kitchen or in life as it unravels . It doesn't matter whether the experience was something joyous like the birth of a child or something that makes me feel like jumping of the ledge (my friend). Music is truly the exclamation point to every emotion I've ever had. It makes me feel so much more alive.
When I'm heartbroken, listening to stuff like My Immortal makes the pain so much more painful. But when I am happy and I'm listening to Come On Eileen, the ride is so much happier and undoubtedly more interesting. It's as if I am able to enlarge, underline and italicize the font of my life through music. It makes the highs much higher and the lows so much lower which I realize is what life is, as it happens-- a series of beautifully timed ups and downs without which can literally transpose into living a flatlined life. And if that isn't an oxymoron, then I don't know what is.
Life is not so redundant or scary with Music. I find that the deeper I am into my story and my personal soundtrack the closer I am to actually finding Me. With its company I find that I am a little bit braver to live, to love. After all it is in the living , the loving and the music that I learned and am continuing to learn who I am. So I say Thank you for the Music, (all together now) for giving it to me.