Day 60 – Sets Wild Things Free

February 7, 2015

(This is part of a 365 project during my 70th year where I write and illustrate a blog on each day's gift.)

And Music
© Bonnie Schupp

An evening of music tonight, beginning with filming Woody Lissauer and then attending Edith May’s Paradise house concert, reminded me of how important music is to me. As a child, my mother used to sing popular songs to my sisters and me and we took dance and piano lessons. It was an ordinary part of our lives.

Music connects on so many levels. When I was pregnant, I used to play the piano, mostly classical and some of my own improvised creations, and I felt my daughter move inside me. Sometimes when nothing else will relax me, it is music that comes through. Even after many years, one thread that follows me from a failed first marriage is the jam sessions, the joy of playing and listening to music with friends.

When my father was in his last days and not responding to much, he responded to music. I bought a keyboard so I could play music for him in his apartment and I watched him tap his foot as I played. The hospice, recognizing the power of music, sent a music therapist to enrich the end of his life. Just a few days before he passed away, my Japanese friend Kyoko sang Japanese songs to him. Mostly unresponsive before that, he soon started clapping his hands in time to the music. 

My husband's Aunt Alice, too, responded to music when she was at death's door. At 105 years old, she was lying unresponsive in a hospitable bed. Family had been called in to say goodbye to her as she was expected to live only a couple more days. The family went to the hospital cafeteria for a meal and returned to Alice's room where the hospice music therapist was playing music...and Alice was awake and enjoying the music! She left the hospital and lived until a month before her 107th birthday. 

Tonight at the house concert, Caroline Ferrante sang a song she wrote called Annabelle which contains a wonderful line. “Annabelle sings her song and sets the wild things free.” I think lots of things inside us are set free when music touches us.

Today’s gift is music.

(Some musician friends worth listening to, most in the Baltimore area: Ellen Cherry, Saffi, Mosno, Georgie Jessup, Christina VanNorman, Dirk Hamilton, LA Young, Kevin Robinson (KERQ), Woody Lissauer, Guity Adjoodani.)
> DAY 61 Unveiling

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