The Time I Didn’t

A minister I like has a saying that you need to be very careful about distinguishing the promptings of the Holy Spirit from the churnings of indigestion. I’m not certain if it is something from the Divine, or my family’s touch of Second Sight, or what, but there are times when I’ve gotten a very strong sense from outside of myself that I really, really do not want to do something or go somewhere, or take a certain route at that very moment. And there have been times when I’ve been pushed by that same sense to do something, usually something I’m not comfortable about but that turns out for the best. But there was one time I didn’t do what I was moved to do.

I had not thought about it for many years, until I was driving home from worship and turned on the radio. It was the last two verses of “Walking in Memphis.” I’m not sure why that took my memory back to that concert, unless it was because the narrator talks about going to a club and being asked to perform. The lady pianist “asked ‘Are you a Christian, Child’ and I said, ‘Ma’am, I am tonight’!” Continue reading

Songs of Place

Some months back I heard Crosby, Stills, and Nash’s “Southern Cross” on the radio. I had not heard it before, and it caught my fancy.  The first two verses go: “Got out of town on a boat goin’ to Southern islands
Sailing a reach before a followin’ sea
She was makin’ for the trades on the outside
And the downhill run to Papeete

Off the wind on this heading lie the Marquesas
We got eighty feet of the waterline nicely making way
In a noisy bar in Avalon I tried to call you
But on a midnight watch I realized why twice you ran away.”

Continue reading

Christus Resurexit!

He is risen indeed!

A light shone in the darkness, and the darkness overcame it not.

A most blessed Easter to my Christian readers, and hopes for a wonderful, rich day and bright future for all my readers.

I love this Russian choral piece, because of the music, and because of how it describes spring. It is “Alleluia! Christ is Risen” by Andre Kopolyoff, arranged by Harvey B. Gaul.

White Cliffs of Dover

“There’ll be bluebirds over the White Cliffs of Dover/ Tomorrow, when the world is free.”

That’s one of those songs that makes me choke up every dang time I hear it. I can’t sing it through without crying. I think it is because of all the hopes and might-have-beens in the lyrics, of just how strongly the singer wants everything to be better, for the bad guys to be gone, and for Johnny to be home again. Continue reading

Choral Stillness

After a concert, or an especially good rehearsal, I find I can’t listen to other music for several hours. Certain compositions and performances set up a resonance inside me, for lack of a better word, echoing and reverberating. A stillness lingers, a song-shaped silence that allows nothing to disturb it. To turn on the radio in the car seems, not a sacrilege, but something almost as unwanted. Continue reading

Inspired by Music?

Somewhere in my TBR stack, I have a short-story anthology inspired by music by Rush. And I know there are books that have been kicked off by certain songs or instrumental compositions. But only three times has music driven me to write something, in both cases scenes or chapters, not entire books (yet.) Continue reading