A moment's reflection

It's well past midsummer. When I walk the dog alongside the creek there are huge fallen leaves from the trees who have sighed and ceded...it's too hot, the end is too close, they're too tired. They've started to shed their skins, to conserve themselves.

There is the faintest breeze tonight. The sun is gentle, the cicadas sing as if it were their last night in town. My neighbor throws her blonde hair into a skrunchy and mows the lawn in the fading light. I love the smell of fresh-cut grass. I kill a striped mosquito and feel a little badly about it...it's a nice night to be alive.

We spent the morning at Children's Hospital, remembering the important parts of singing: collaborating, communicating, sharing. No reviewers, no maestro, no notes session. Songs in English and German, classical and pop and musical theater. The children were happy for the distraction, but the adults - the parents, the nurses, the support staff - were joyous at the noise our singers made. Lesson learned: we can inspire and uplift even when we are struggling ourselves. And the reasons that you - that we - were drawn to this whole artsy-fartsy thing in the first place? Still totally, 100% valid, no matter where you are on the amateur-professional continuum.

It's 8pm. After a truly horrible night of sleep (lack of sleep?), I'm looking forward to sundown. A different neighbor is singing along with his walkman intermittently as he walks past...the cat is toying with an unfortunate cicada...the sky is an indeterminate whitish-blue, save for the neon sunset peeking around the clouds.

Four more days of singing, of camaraderie; of stopping to talk, to really listen, to encourage, to empower, to support, to confide.

These last four days? I would willing stretch them out indefinitely. The aftermath of the art-making might be my new favorite part of the summer.


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