Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent. Victor Hugo
When I was a little girl, I watched the skies for God's angels shining bright. I'd ooh and ahhh at beams of light breaking through clouds, shimmering streaks dancing in dark rumbling clouds. I never tired of these glimpses of the Divine. I never gave up watching for them.
I still don't. Stop looking for them. Waiting. Holding my breath to see if angels from on high will shine through dark clouds, piercing the sky with divinely inspired light.
Living here where the prairies stretch into yesterday passing away into the Eastern horizon and the Rockies thrust up into the sky on the west, I am seldom disappointed.
Last night, as Ellie and I walked along the ridge of the reservoir, the eastern sky stretched out in clear blue infinity, beckoning us into the calm before the storm brewing in western skies behind us. Golden leaves rustled as we walked, a cool autumn breeze whispered through the trees, tempting recalcitrant leaves to let go and fall.
We passed a woman, camera hanging from around her neck.
We passed a couple, arms laden with fishing equipment. No luck. Too late in the year, they replied to my question about their fishing success. Ellie, ever hopeful for attention, wiggled and squirmed and made whining noises. "Pet me. Pet me," she implored and they obliged. The man dropped his gear, knelt down and rubbed her flanks. He laughed and smiled and lapped up Ellie's adoration as she wiggled beneath his hands stroking her fur. Joy descended. The man stood up and we parted ways, richer for our encounter.
As we walked, the wind tugged at my hair. The sounds of autumn rustled underfoot. I breathed in the pure exhilaration of the moment.
We walked east and then turned back west. Back towards the darkening skies where clouds rolled across the horizon, pummeling the distant mountains into oblivion. Streaks of light pierced the darkness, streaming like heavenly angels from on high.
Ahhh, I whispered to Ellie, stopping to soak up their brilliance. A God moment.
Ellie tugged at the leash. Don't stop, she pleaded. There's so much to smell. To do. To sniff out.
But I stopped. And breathed again. Deeply. And the clouds kept rolling. The light kept shining and the angels kept dancing from on high.
And then, above the birds cawing, the leaves whispering, I heard it. Music. Plaintive. Expressive. Out of place. Out of context. The sounds of a violin rose above nature's song.
I started walking back from where I came. Westward.
And there he stood. A man on the ridge. Bike leaning up against a park bench. Body clad in black lycra. Bright yellow wind jacket. Backpack open. Music stand before him. Pages pinned to its spine, corners rippling in the wind. Violin tucked beneath his chin. Giant headset bulging out from his ears like flies eyes under a microscope. Eyes closed, his body swayed to and fro as the provocative notes of his violin rose up into the air to be whipped away by the wind to dance on the breeze.
Ellie had no interest in the man, or his violin.
I was entranced.
The man played. Oblivious to anyone walking by -- though on this breezy evening there were few passers-by.
He played and his music created a perfect bubble of delight shimmering like the light streaming from the skies.
Heaven on earth.
Divine inspiration rising up to embrace me in notes of pure delight.
The man never opened his eyes. I never intruded.
I walked past. His notes caressed my skin. My mind. My body.
I walked past and let his notes drift away on the breeze.
I carried the magic of the moment with me.
Like angels streaming through the cloud, gracing the world with beauty and wonder, his notes embraced me with their joy and I was richer for their song piercing my soul.
I carry the magic with me.
PS. On another musical note, my friend Lewis has created a beautiful and enchanting CD of chants. Based on the ancient practice of Kirtan, Lewis' CD lifts me up into that 'happy place' where troubles fall away and joy ascends. Please visit his site to find out more about Kirtan and to experience samplings of Shakti Deva's music. (I found the quote at the beginning of this post on Lewis' site.) May you be inspired to quiet your mind and embrace the Oneness that transcends our human condition.