I had a dream recently. Nowhere near, of course, the eloquent and visionary Dream many of us celebrate and cherish, memorialize and continue to long and to strive for on this day in the United States.
Just a regular dream.
In it I was chatting with an old friend. I wish I could remember what we were talking about. I know it was light and jovial and I was enjoying the conversation.
Something struck a chord, though, with some part of my heart that I keep hidden. I wish I could remember. What I do remember is outwardly joking, “Well, I’m not sure my editor would let me write that story.”
Then I heard a voice, not my father’s voice, but in a tone that my father had: loving and quiet but firm. A tone that said he meant for the message he was conveying to be taken with extreme seriousness:
“I AM the editor. Write it.”
It was the tone as much as the message that woke me up. Unfortunately, I mean that literally.
It’s been over a month and the “it” continues to elude me. I can’t imagine that among the many stories and thoughts that “crowd my mind” and my heart there would be any “that really matter,” any that anyone needs to hear, that will make the world or even one person’s day any better.
Instead of chasing “it” with a net, I’ve decided to wait mindfully — and with all the cliché of that butterfly philosophy — to see if it lands on me.
While I wait, I’ve been clearing things out, sharing old stories and thoughts and enjoying and occasionally sharing others’ stories and thoughts.
If you’re reading this from a phone or other media device, you may not be able to see the “Now Playing” music player over in the right frame.
Just about daily, a song from deep in the archives of my music collection comes to mind, often because of some snippet of conversation or sometimes just because of what’s going on around me. They’re not necessarily “earworms,” those songs someone plants in your head that won’t go away. Please note the restraint I am exercising in not citing examples here. You’re welcome.
If a song qualifies more as a soundtrack to part of my day than an earworm, and if I own it in my collection, I add it to the playlist. (You can click and slide the “play” bar to the right to get to the next song.) I’ve begun to think of it as a sort of Muzak while I wait.
Maybe the “it” will never land on me. Sometimes a dream is just a dream.
But other times dreams and the words used to convey them make the world a better place. Thank you, Dr. King, for your dream and your words.
This is my song for today.
James Taylor’s “Shed a Little Light” is from his 1991 album, New Moon Shine. This video excerpt is from one of the DVDs I would grab if I had to rush out of my burning house. Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.
At least one of you will get the Jackson Browne lyrical reference in this post, which is why I like you and your way with words.