Take a Sad Song and Make It Better
For years, I couldn’t listen to the Beatles ballad that’s indelibly linked to my mother’s death. Then my one-year-old daughter helped me start to make it better.
Photo courtesy Steve McPherson
My daughter is still too young to ask about my mother, for whom she’s named. When she does, though, I’ll most likely start by telling her that her grandmother was kind-hearted and generous, that she loved to laugh and could put just about anyone at ease. These things are true, but they’re also only part of the story. Maybe when she’s a little older, I’ll begin adding in that my mom was also brassy and bold. At times, I think I already see that in my daughter.
And I know that my dad’s classical guitar instructor played an instrumental solo arrangement of “Hey Jude” at the ceremony. This is the way a song becomes the property of a couple. I know because when my wife and I were married, our first dance was to Big Star’s “Thirteen,” a song we had danced to on an old jukebox in the basement of the Turf Club, the divey bar and music venue where we met. So now “Thirteen” is ours.
I think I know so much about this particular part of my parents’ wedding day because …