Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Flickering to life

Today I was at my friend Cairo's. In the afternoon, she had a fiddle gig, so I spent the afternoon hanging out with her amazing family.
I played some piano, even though I have no idea how to play those fancy chords!
And then her mama came home, and she sat down in front of the piano...
I watched her, the way her shoulders were leaning down, as if she was trying to protect this brilliant piece of music that she was birthing.
This, I remember thinking, is what feeling sounds like
And maybe you do have to come back to the beginning before you can start all over again
As the notes echoed out across the house, I thought of this place where beauty is birthed from trial and hope cries out to be noticed from its place among the thorns
I was filled with hope, as I listened
I was struck by the beauty and the passion
I was reminded of the strength that was hiding deep within me
Maybe it was still there. I hope it is
Sitting there, in that room beside this wonderful musician, I felt my heart flicker back to life

Lean into the music, and let it go. Let the pain you've been carrying for so long slide off your shoulders. You've got it in you to make it, to get through this, to awaken this summer that is crouching in the shadows of your soul and scare off this winter. Let your heart feel again, remember what it's like to live bravely, passionately, beautifully.

I wish I could perfectly describe what I felt in those moments: the feeling of my heart flickering back to life, the feeling of feeling something again, the feeling of beauty rising up and of the pain of life being transferred into a song.

This is what feeling sounds like, I whispered to myself. It was the same feeling I got last summer, as I listened to one of my friends playing guitar, the words he sang as if they were being whispered just for me, as hope and strength showered down over my heart and i was flickering back to life. Both of these moments, I was honored to be a part of.
It was the vulnerability and passion I saw wrapped up in these moments, the stirring of my heart.
So I let the sound float down over me, wrapping me in its gentle embrace.
It made my heart flicker back to life, made me remember my very heartbeat is a symphony. There is still life here, still passion and strength and hope hiding out in this heart.

Like a bird singing in the depths of winter, reminding you not to give up, that there is more coming still. Like a candle in the night, reminding you that brighter days are coming, that there is still hope dwelling here because it's not completely dark. Like a flower blooming on the first day of spring, reminding you that life is still alive and hasn't died under the chilling cold of winter. Like the lion's roar sending out a message of strength.

I want to make a mess of a story.
Make a mess of a song.
I want to do whatever it takes to get it out of me.
I want to lean into the lyrics again
and whisper over the words I'm most afraid of.
I want to find my way back.
and sing my way through.
I'll let these words be my map to someplace good.
That's all they've wanted to be all along, I think.

1 comment:

paige said...

oh sheesh... did my comment not go through?
i just said that you can't possibly know how vulnerable i feel when i play.. My Father used your words today to allow me to taste safety & i'm so grateful. Reminds me of the prayer of Saint Francis...
"Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is doubt, faith. Where there is despair, hope. Where there is darkness, light. Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console; to be understood, as to understand; to be loved, as to love. For it is in giving that we receive. It is in pardoning that we are pardoned, and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life."
Thank you so much, little friend.