“Beethoven tells you what it’s like to be Beethoven and Mozart tells you what it’s like to be human. Bach tells you what it’s like to be the universe.”
― Douglas Adams
I learned to play the violin when I was in the 4th grade. I can’t say I was a fan of listening to classical music back then. But learning the notes, the instrument, and learning to read music offered, at the very least, an interest in music itself. This has helped in my adult life tremendously.
These days, I find great peace in classical music. I play it in the house all the time. Alexa knows my preferences. I don’t always know what I’m listening to. Most of the time, she plays what she plays and the melodies become familiar over time. Sometimes I ask what she’s playing. Sometimes I just listen for the sake of it.
Today’s selection really stopped me in my tracks. I was cleaning our breakfast dishes and emptying last night’s clean dishes. Then I heard something I didn’t recognize but loved immediately.
I was completely transported to some foreign ballroom with wood paneling and gold fixtures. I could see women waltzing, a regal feast, and the threat of cold somewhere in the distant.
It was Dimitri Shostakovich, his 2nd Waltz. Once when I read Colm Toibin’s, Nora Webster, I learned how transformative classical music could be. His protagonist, Nora, heals her grief through a newfound affinity for classical music. She finds it redemptive and inspiring. How ridiculous does that sound? I learned about a woman’s transformative experience with music by reading about it, instead of feeling it for myself!
I sound naive, I know. But lately, in my search for peace, I find myself taking time to stop and concentrate on things.
Now here I was, taken from my kitchen to some far off land where a million wonderful things could happen. I really listened to each note, let my imagination drift, and I felt peace knowing that I could appreciate something in a way I never had before.
It was pretty darn awesome.
What brought you peace this week?
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