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19 Mar

The following is an article I wrote in 2008 for our community newspaper:

People have asked me how I come up with topics for this article each month. The answer to that question is I just listen. That’s right… heard me. I just listen. Now you may think I’ve totally lost it, but if you’ve seen the movie August Rush, you probably have an idea of what I mean. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, it’s a must see.
August is an eleven year-old music prodigy, but that’s all I’ll share, as I don’t want to give you the rest of the details to spoil the plot. Anyway, August says, “There’s music in the wind and sky. Can you hear it? And there’s hope. Can you feel it? Open your heart and listen.”
As I sat on my front porch very early this morning, I realized I was hearing a symphony of sounds. I was blessed to hear the piliated woodpecker in the woods across the street, which reminded me of the sound from an oboe. Soon I could hear the Blue Jay screeching like a novice on a violin as it prepared to take a dip in the birdbath. The chirping of the male and female chickadees answering one another’s mating call sounded more like children in a swimming pool yelling “Marco” in a high voice like a piccolo and answering “Polo” in a lower tone like a viola. The duet of the brown thrasher and bob-o-link sounded more like dueling banjos to me while the geese flying overhead honked to say good morning. All of a sudden, the bass fiddle-like noise from the red winged blackbird sounded as he raised his wings to flash the red as if to say, “Stop!”
The music soon continued. The percussion of the red-bellied woodpecker began as if a conductor tapping his baton against the music stand apparently marking time for the rest of the musicians. The most amazing though was when I heard the hum from the wings of a ruby throated hummingbird on its way to the feeder. And then I heard the raspy sounds from a bright-eyed titmouse as it spotted sunflower seeds on the tray. As the wind began to blow, the Meadowlarks began to sing their melody loud enough I was certain to wake up the neighbors. The tall grass in the field swayed to the music as if it were dancing to the sounds of the morning. Lastly, the wind chime hanging behind me added an array of notes that sounded similar to the brass section.
Yes, that was the symphony of sounds I heard this morning as I sat on my front porch. August Rush says, “There is hope….can you feel it?” I guess my hope from this experience is that I never lose my hearing or my imagination as I age here at Lake Carroll. Even more hopeful is that in my lifetime there will never be an empty seat in the orchestra of nature due to the carelessness of humankind.
Just open your heart and listen!

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Gramma Golden

Gramma Golden