The Invitation

- originally published December 5, 2014 -

This whole writing music thing started with the fear of moving forward. Sitting in a loft bed at a University dormitory built in the 1940s, I scribbled lines in my journal: “Playing moments on repeat, watching orange haunt the leaves. Turning pages in my sleep, the danger warnings I don’t heed, when I can’t go back, but won’t walk forward, broken records never learn”.

I used to go to the symphony concerts just because I liked them, and they were free, since I was student. During that hour, all of the mess of life would somehow paint itself into something beautiful. I thought – this is a reflection of grace. Music can make something beautiful out of something painful. And each day I started to fear a little less and trust a little more.

Last Tuesday, the sun set amidst jet streaks over our house in Virginia on an eerie, fifty degree evening in a world of unrest. “Look at the etch-a-sketch sky!” I sat on the couch, remote in hand, watching hours of old, faded film. That’s when it hit me. I had started to think that there were no more beginnings. But I’ve been learning that life is full of beginnings. Each morning, something unfathomable happens. The sky yawns again, this time waking up, pulling back the shades. The hazy dark is flooded with orange, mint, hazel, and blue. Is this a small part of what Mary Oliver meant when she wrote: “it is a serious thing, just to be alive, on this fresh morning, in this broken world?” The poem that cradles these words is called “The Invitation.” Mercies are new, grace is faithful. That’s how it all really started. And now we’re here. And here we go.