Friday, April 20, 2007

Busting out all over

"Spring is busting out all o-over."

I love musicals: the singing, the dancing, the color and excitement. I've even did a turn as dancer, actor and singer once upon a time, but like so many things it fell by the wayside to be practiced and enjoyed alone. At least I always thought I was alone. I wasn't. There is always someone near or passing by when we least expect it, and oftentimes we don't even know it.

When I lived at the cabin higher up in the mountains there were other houses and cabins nearby but they were usually empty, the owners weekenders or seasonals. Very few people lived up there full time. The cabin was screened by trees and set down into a fold of the mountain hidden from casual view. Unless you knew it was there, you wouldn't see it despite it's orangey-brown stained color.

After I moved back to the city, I didn't think about the habits I had formed while I lived in solitude. I sang and danced out on the deck in the sunshine and in the snow, serenading the animals, clouds and trees without thinking about it. I felt free. So free, that when I moved here I kept on singing and dancing, but not out on the deck. I don't have one. My landlady and Pastor heard me through the windows, open to catch the warm spring breezes, and mentioned it a couple days later, saying the house liked my singing--and so did they. The other day the landlady mentioned she doesn't hear me singing any more. "Pastor lies out on the deck looking up at your windows. He's waiting for you to sing. It's time again," she said. "You don't sing much any more."

No, I don't. I sing now and then when I shower and on the weekends when I get dressed to go out, but not like I did when I moved here. Responsibilities and work have silenced me.

"We hope you start singing again," the landlady said. Pastor leaned against me, nosing my hands, urging me to pet him. "Pastor misses it." She turned to go back into her apartment and stopped. "I do, too."

I miss those long slow days full of books and singing and dancing and quiet. I love it here in this neighborhood between the parks, amid the laughter and voices of children and friends. Still, there is something quieter about my life here despite being surrounded by sounds and noise and voices. I am no longer free, fitted as I am into this homey niche in the city, one sound lost among so much other sounds.

Nel just finished her shower and the landlady and Pastor have gone to the dog park for their morning walk. The scent of coffee lingers in the air from the landlady's apartment, just a whiff of richness and home. A breeze stirs the cords on the blinds and the whoosh of cars passing in the street below drifts up. Birds call and warble while crows voice their harsh raucous caws. Cooper barks next door and the hum of computer and refrigerator underlay it all. Every voice, every sound, every noise weaves music, a different music I have become used to hearing, a music that reminds me of the softer music of those long slow days.

I miss the music, too. I miss the magical sound of one voice busting out all over with excitement and hope and freedom.

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