Single Petal of a Rose

All sorts of thoughts going through my head this weekend.  Wrote them all down. Command “A” and deleted.

The death of a loved one leaves an indelible fingerprint.  The more we love, the deeper the impression.  Our lives spin around in annual cycles, a fragile cassette tape, destined to wear down with time, hopefully from lots of good play. Loss abruptly severs the tape and, even though we competently splice the two warped and frayed ends back together, every year the tape replays a muffled tearing sound in that very same spot.

Nine years ago, yesterday.  The world is reborn and each year, and still I struggle to rejoice.

Magnolia at Woodlawn

Magnolia at Woodlawn

I make a yearly spring, 4 train pilgrimage north with my family to Woodlawn Cemetery to visit Mom’s grave since the anniversary of her death narrowly coincides with her May birthday and mother’s day.  For the past two years The Woodlawn Conservancy has conveniently produced a timely Jazz Concert commemorating the many famous musicians interred at Woodlawn (Ellington, Davis and so many others).


Music at Woodlawn Cemetery

Today, the boys, husband, sister and I listened as three very, very senior musicians demonstrated that music truly transcends time!  This dapper trio (sax, upright bass and classical/nylon string guitar) played an impressive, short program featuring a stunning solo tenor sax rendition of “Single Petal of a Rose” by Ellington.  Brought the chapel to rapt silence, tears (even his fellow musicians) and then a roar of applause.  One of those magical moments when music did its thing.  Spoke the wordless language that communicates directly with our souls.  If you haven’t ever heard this song, please click on the link at the top.

My mother would have loved that moment.  Like me, and many in the chapel today, she would have been dabbing at the tears streaming down her cheeks.  She couldn’t resist beauty.

Notes to Mom

Notes to Mom

My sister gave the boys note pads and they took the initiative to leave notes to my mother who only ever knew my older son as an infant.

The cassette tape plays on and today I added a new song.  “Single Petal of a Rose.”





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