“Music gives soul to the universe and wings to the mind”
Plato said that “music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything”.
My first memory of my mother is of her singing and dancing. She loves music, and I don’t recall a day of my childhood that didn’t involve music. She woke us up singing and sang us to sleep. I remember wanting to crawl under a rock when she told us the story of running down the road, chasing Cliff Richard’s car. My twelve-year-old self thought that was the most embarrassing thing any person could do.
The years have gone by, and at 73, she still adores music. She has particularly enjoyed the client events at Chartered with Sean Brokensha, the Music Guru. After each event, she would call me and gush, and then she would express how it was her dream to have dinner with Sean and let him tell her about Leonard Cohen. The gravelly-voiced troubadour had an unrivalled way with words and became one of Canada’s greatest literary giants. Her enduring interest in and fascination with his music only happened later in life where she came to appreciate the beauty and intricacy of his poetry and lyrics.
This year, we decided that we would make her dream come true and take her on a musical journey instead of a physical one for her birthday, so we arranged dinner with Sean and a whole night dedicated to Leonard.
It was an intimate affair held on the patio on a beautiful spring evening. The presentation was peppered with wonderful anecdotes and biographical information about this amazing artist, but what really brought it to life were all the fantastic videos. Sean is very relaxed and laid back, and he didn’t mind being interrupted or questioned even when he was required to deviate from his pre-prepared agenda. Various artists ranging from Johnny Clegg and Peter Gabriel and the poetry of Kerouac, also came under the spotlight.
These past 18 months have really highlighted how it is memories and not things that matter the most. I am so grateful that we had the opportunity to spend time as a family and explore my mother’s passion.
Watching my mother delight in every minute will be what I remember from the evening, and these lyrics are the ones that will always remind me of my parents and their love story.
“Dance me to your beauty with a burning violin
Dance me through the panic ’til I’m gathered safely in
Lift me like an olive branch and be my homeward dove
Dance me to the end of love.”