Sunday, September 22, 2013

Composing a Day

Louis Armstrong is playing walk-up music for a September storm. I don't know what God looks like, but I picture him blowing a horn, conducting a storm, looking a lot like Louis.

I'm sitting on the back deck, drinking a Pabst Blue Ribbon, Louis on the stereo blowing through the window, watching the storm approach. It's a singular moment. The day has been full of them. Watching our girls play field hockey. Making jambalaya for lunch. Getting out Halloween decorations. Buying mums. Sometimes the profound lives in the mundane. But I have to look for it.

Now it's morning coffee. Sunrise after a rain storm. Church. Sunday football. A Nationals double-header. A day with family.

The thing about Louis Armstrong's horn, you only know it by the pauses, the silences that surround the notes. Days are like that: notes and pauses and bridges between the two. Each day is a composition, part structure, part improvisation. The thing a jazz man can teach me about composing a day: always make room for improv--those singular, watching a storm roll in moments that you can't structure.