We’ve all done it, haven’t we? Had an event or gathering that we wanted to go to, looked forward to, but as the time was whittled to hours, then minutes before we had to leave, as we grew more interested in a project we were working on, increasingly loving our solitude, or, in my case, a good book with my puppy finally sound asleep resting her head on my ankles, we begin to make excuses.
It won’t be the end of the world. There will always be next week or month, the City just stole my car and I have a disdain for the bus and besides, don’t have the four dollars to spend, don’t want to wait.
The worst of all – I won’t be missed.
That was me tonight, thinking of any reason I could not to go to Mark Growden’s beautiful manifestation, the ‘Calling All Choir’. Any reason… but especially getting there and back. They were the strongest. I love driving, loved having a car, and absolutely adore getting out of the Tenderloin – loathe walking Ruby in it for the most part… but I digress.
I received a message, straight out of the fading blue by someone who is becoming a dearer friend by the day.
“Hey darling! Are you singing tonight? Do you need a ride?”
I remember to listen, and I hear. I accept. The world does not work in mysterious ways. It works, and we only need to realize how perfect they are.
I remember Mark, so many years ago, driving by and seeing me in my garage on Paige and Steiner, holding a garage sale to hopefully pay rent. We waved at each other, and he pulled over. (I have permission to say this from him) – and then, said a brief hello as he walked quickly into the breezeway to do what he used to do after copping. I could say that he isn’t the same person, make this a lie – but he is the same person. Full of passion, determination, desire and… and love. He just changed direction. Now, he channels everything from the former past of the crack stem to the world, creating magic. Magick.
Then there was tonight, and for the first time, my voice wavered fighting back tears. Tears of appreciation for him and all the others, tears for… for everything.
We began with voice exercises, Cameron and I bumping each other out of love and appreciation and so long unseen, holding hands, exorcizing our demons, exercising our voices. We needed to be here now, needed to let go of everything. I tend to hold on to so very much… I have let go of more, but always remember.
Part two. Moonlight.
Mark crated a song out of a single word, which he wrote while it was streaming through his window in country. Moonlight. If I didn’t know better, I would call it contrived, but I see, I listen – and some, I cannot help but hear. A four part harmony, even the least of us were now singers with his humor and instruction. We look to him not as a teacher, but as a true friend, he us just that way – and as I said before, I would die for my friends. Hell – I would even sing for them. WITH them.
Mark requested that we sing all parts, find our range, find what we preferred to sing. I was, and always will be, Bass. (In an opera, I will always be killed. Ain’t that fitting? A New adventure!) Wandering again.
He asked us to form unclosed circles – imagine a flower. We were pedals. Bass, tenor, Alto, Semprano. Might sound difficult, but under him, easily and quickly done.
Then, he asked us to sing. He asks us to sing, and the heavens opened; He asked us each to sing the part we had chosen and then led us outdoors, to sing “Moonlight” to the full moon.
I didn’t look at anyone. I looked at the moon, singing my part. Everyone else was so perfectly singing their soul. My voice wavered with tears… and I was home in the light of the Harvest Moon.
One word, and a song so powerful.
It is nice to be back.
Listen. You just might hear us – or better yet, come join us.