Sometimes clarity shows up in knowing you are surrounded in and by clouds of witnesses.
Today began gracefully enough. I awoke to one of my favorite pieces playing on loop. Lark Ascending by Robert Vaughn Williams. I remember the first time I saw (and by default, heard) it. A dear friend had given me box seats at Carnegie Hall that he couldn’t use at a time when I was still learning the writerhead ropes, struggling to stay encouraged outside of design, where I at least was technically known to have a gifting. I was still in my twenties, but had felt abandoned taking the leap into the unknown. People sometimes get mad when you walk away from things they’d kill for to go for what you love instead. It took over a decade to understand and then empathize with that.
Anyway, I can’t recall the name of the violinist but she was young, asian and in red. I recall the energy shifting around me, possibly because of her youth-but every shuffle and side conversation slurred to a stop when she first pulled that bow across her strings.
I’ve listened to classical all my life. I came up when they set cartoons to it, the house I was in as much as my own was ruled by it and Mozart was one of my first play-husbands. Plus, growing up on University Circle, running in and out of the Arts institutions there as a Cleveland School of the Arts kid, friends wielding oboes like weaponry the way us artheads used tsquares… classical was woven into our daily environment as much as the sometimes heinous treks through crazy-assed Cleveland to get To our safe space within it. We grew up wearing street gear to performances at Severance Hall, orchestra seats alongside old money in tafetta, and they gave us no bother over baggy pants ( or ripped jeans over fishnets & open tux shirts flashing bras) because we were all basking in the music. &In nyc, I was a queen of the nosebleed seats at venues across the city.
…But that woman playing Lark Ascending at Carnegie Hall was the first time a piece of classical music made me publicly cry. Now…I’d Seen it. Like I said, the old money musicheads gliding down from Shaker Heights had no shame in Severance Hall-if they got struck, you saw it. It was wild, yet mystifying. But when it happened to me a decade later? I got it.
She got three standing ovations, i think.
This all bubbled back up because i meditated to it today. First time. &I have had notorious times trying to sit still over the years (my nola dojo dudes will attest to that). But today was pristine. &I’d absently asked higher me where we first heard it & she simply said “Carnegie Hall.”like it was the most normal thing in the world. And as I came out of meditation God reminded that once, it was.
I have led. ..the strangest blessed life. Sometimes I forget.
Today I pray that God & Heaven bless all of you with remembering how oddly epic he has made your life, explicitly to you. This isn’t about how anyone sees it. I want you to be hit. ..with the majesty of just your kind of spiritual nuance he has scrawled your years with, solely to see your heart sing. The secret giddy stuff. May we all embrace moments today full of that kind of upper room ether.
Have a blessed morning out there, yall.