Another Moving Day

http://dromosmx.com/acne Moving day 2007 was quite different than the afore-described blizzard…the day was not nearly as, well, as grand, yet it was every bit as magical.

http://sluicecomic.com/comic/a-moment-of-clarity/ Overcast with a chill in the air, the weather made mockery of the anticipated event….rain threatened but did not materialize. Working from home, I kept an ear out for sounds from the street which might indicate that a truck was approaching. Thus distracted, memories crept into my mind, first small, tentative, then growing, as they gained confidence and momentum, and held me captive.

Childhood scenes, like short movie clips, flashed across the screen of my mind. I could see, but fortunately not hear, my father playing the fiddle (as he was known to call his violin) by our piano. Approximating as many of the notes as he hit, he would sometime lasso one of the family’s pianists into accompanying him….we seldom offered our services willingly as his playing, while enthusiastic, left much room for improvement.  I could see my mother, practicing Mozart and Brahms, Beethoven and Bach, all before most of us had eaten breakfast. I could see my older brothers practicing as well… at varying levels of expertise. I could see our dearest friends—choir directors and organists from our church—playing and singing after dinner.  Such times were highlights of my childhood as laughter, talent, beautiful music and joy filled our living room. I could see Christmas with the tree not far from the piano; its lights reflecting on the wood and casting a mystical glow. Holiday music would alternate between the piano and stereo. I could see my college roommate, Diane, and I playing Brahms Hungarian Dances for four hands… me working hard to keep up with Diane’s lightning fast fingers and sight-reading skills. But mostly, I could see the keyboard–the beautiful crest of the Steinway just to the right of middle C. I could hear, yes, hear the pieces I worked so hard to perfect as I logged hours a day on the piano bench.

This music has become part of my fabric, the melodies—threads– interwoven into my very being. To this day, just a few notes of a phrase will bring back entire sonatas, waltzes and preludes, and so often this music is accompanied by memories and emotions.

A large non-descript truck pulled up in front of my house. With its journey from Shaker Heights, OH complete, my family’s Steinway Model M would soon be gracing our living room – commanding attention and respect. Our children would practice and hone their talents on it just as my family had years ago. Piano music played by young, eager fingers would fill our house, and music would become part of our children’s beings now… and would help mold their personalities. New memories would be created with this piano in its rightful place– front and center.

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