Thursday, November 29, 2012
Rough day at work today. Thursday is my busiest day of the week and the moment I arrived the challenges began, changed, & persisted. C'est la vie. Fortunately I have tools, a path to bring me back. So I returned as did the challenges. And so it went.
Arriving home I hit the floor for an Alexander Technique lie down. Aptly called Active Rest, tonight required a constant but gentle guidance of my attention to come back to my body and release the unnecessary tension. My mind drifting away, then a moment of noticing to direct my thoughts back to the body, back to the present moment. Slowly the tension melted into the floor.
Rising I went to my guitar and began a gentle inquisitive improvisation. Intrigued by the melodies that arrived I continued to explore the possibilities, moving beyond my usual responses. After 25 minutes I took a small break.
When I returned to the opening melody I decided to turn on the tape recorder. A little over 2 minutes later I turned it off. Almost immediately I dove into another uncharted improvisation which was spirited but led nowhere. And then another, enjoying the musical challenge, that again led nowhere.
Pausing, I used an AT negative direction in a sense of " I am not an improvisor." I began exploring again. One beautiful arpeggio followed another. And then another. Such a precious moment as I allowed this musical idea to come out. Listening; releasing; and being open to what might arise, a sudden energetic shift occurred in the music and myself.
I spent the next hour exploring, prodding, and being delighted with the act of playing my guitar. Without concern. Without pressure. Just with.
Monday, November 19, 2012
My Mothers Birthday is today. Always a day of gratitude tinged with sadness at her passing so very long ago. For years I've had a ritual of lighting a candle, sitting quietly with my wife, and then playing Matka Boska. When this piece arrived a few years back, I had no doubt that it was for my Mother, thus the title was foretold.
My Mother was born of Polish immigrants and even though she was born in the US her first language was Polish. As a child when she was upset with one of us she would intone Matka Boska - Blessed Mother, looking to her faith to guide her in whatever challenge she was facing.
I offered more than my share of challenges, and like the Blessed Mother that she was, she always accepted me, nurtured me, and loved me. And she bought me my first guitar. So tonight tired but grateful, I lit my candle. My playing was full of imperfections - just like me. I could sense her smile and feel her love, and I just continued to play the piece which was perfect in its' imperfections.