Posts Tagged ‘conductor’

Bach Cello Sonata No.1

October 11, 2017

In G.

And 5 and 6 as well.

Yo Yo Ma.

That is what I am listening to.

It was an intense day and I feel it slowly easing out of my body and sliding to the floor in a big puddle.

I could slide to the floor in a big puddle.

When I need to calm down and unwind I like to listen to this in particular.

It is sweet and I find it wistful, God I miss playing the cello.

There’s a spot about 1:50 into the first sonata and I can feel the bow in my hand, I can see my fingers striding over the neck of the cello and I can feel it between my legs.

I can get weepy thinking about it.

One would suppose that I would be past it, this yearning, but somethings stay with me a long time.

I don’t know that I ever really got over the loss of playing cello.

And I have had it suggested too many times to count that maybe I pick it up again.

I think.

Yes!

Let me do that.

In what fucking time?

I could give up writing in the morning.

I could play music for my morning spiritual fix.

I could not buy a car and buy a cello.

I could go over to Roland Feller and blow my heart out on a cello.

Roland Feller is the luthier for the San Francisco Symphony.

I went once, with a friend who worked out of the Burning Man offices when I was nannying there many years ago now.

He is a professional cello player and gigs about and plays with the San Jose Orchestra.

He gave me lessons for a while and one day took me to Roland Feller.

I would have never known that there was a luthier there.

It is an extraordinary nondescript house next to the Popeye’s Chicken on Divisadero Street.

There is no signage.

You have to make an appointment.

There is a gate and a call box and it looks like some cheap apartment, well, it’s in San Francisco so it’s probably not cheap, but the door opens into this gold mine of classical music instruments.

Violins.

Violas.

Stand up Bass.

Cellos.

Oh and the cellos.

I played a few different ones and I remember one in particular, it was luscious, the sound so rich, so vibrant, it made me quiver with delight.

My friend teased me a little that I was passionate and looked as though I might be having the sexy thoughts.

I had never had a cello quite that caliber ever before in my hands.

It was exquisite.

And one day.

Well.

I have written on this topic before, I will have another cello.

I’m not there yet.

But one day.

And in the mean time.

Well.

I have my Yo Yo Ma and I have Bach.

And Debussy.

And Chopin.

Oh the Chopin Cello Sonata in G Minor.

Oof.

So good.

The Bach is my favorite, but that Chopin is glorious too, passionate and brash and stupendous.

I love that I love classical music.

I don’t look the type.

Except, well, maybe that’s not true.

I feel like I might look the type, that there’s a brazen woman cellist in my heart.

Maybe she smashes herself on her music like I smash myself with my poetry.

Maybe one day the two will get back together again.

I don’t expect that I will ever be great, I never was great, but I had heart, yes, I had great big heart and I knew it and so did my most ardent supporter–my orchestra conductor, Mister Ziegler.

Where ever you are, you meant something to me that few teachers do.

He supported me, he was honest with me, he argued for me.

He brought in my mom and my step father, the fuck (egad, maybe I need yet another inventory on the man, christ), and sat them down and tried, oh how hard he tried, to convince them to not let me quit cello.

Quitting cello was not my idea.

It was my stepfathers idea.

We didn’t have enough money and my parents, god I can’t even say that, the man was never a fucking parent to me, he was a violent misogynistic sociopath, but not a parent, had bought a house in Windsor, outside the school system I was in at the time I was playing cello.

There was no thought of a tutor, I had one actually, that my conductor had arranged with the school and I was given said tutoring for free, but to move away from the school system I would lose that.

And the school that was closest to me, the one that I would attend, DeForest, well, they didn’t have an orchestra.

Oh sure.

They had band.

But no orchestra.

They had cut the funding for the orchestra.

You should see the football stadium though, a work of art that.

Anyway.

My conductor tried to argue that my parents continuing my tutoring or that I commute in to Madison for school and still stay with the cello.

Nope.

There were words, there was fire, I could see how hard my conductor was trying to get through to my parents.

My stepfather hated me playing.

He hated me practicing.

I got lost in the cello, I wasn’t there, I was gone, gone, gone, and he wanted me present and not in my fantasy world.

He also did not like that I read as much as I did, I shit you not.

What fucking parent doesn’t want their children to read?

When I was punished some of the worst punishments were being denied those things that I loved most.

Books and my cello.

Cello was first to go.

“Put it away and go clean the bathtub,” he said.

The the books were taken.

I don’t know what I did, I mean, I have absolutely no recollection of what I had done to deserve the grounding to my room one weekend, but he was diabolical.

I had no problem being grounded to my room, fine with me, I won’t have to look at you.

I’ll read, thank you very much.

But.

Oh my fucking god, the man had removed every single book I had in my room, everything was gone, it was stripped.

Thank God I had one underneath the mattress of my bed.

Fucking stashed my back up drugs thank you very much.

So.

It wasn’t much of a surprise, after the cello was taken and my stepfather and my mom left the orchestra room with me sadly in tow, that once we moved to Windsor I was to be denied academic access as well.

“She’s too proud, she needs to be humbled, she’s not allowed to do it,” he told my mom, who had tried in her own way to get him to give his permission to sway him.

I was trailing behind in the snow walking down Windsor Road in the middle of a cold ass night listening to them argue about me and the invitation I had been given to join an advanced English class-accelerated and an accelerated math class.

I didn’t care so much about the math, irony, I was actually able to attend that, I think my mom might have had a hook up or something with the math teacher now that I look back, but the English was resolutely denied.

I can feel rage in my chest when I think about that.

“Too proud, she’s just too fucking proud.”

And maybe I was.

Pride goeth before the fall.

I have been humbled in many ways, but I still like my books and I still love listening to cello.

And I am beyond proud of how I grew and became the woman I am today.

Despite the horrendous odds against me growing up.

I got out.

And you can’t put me down.

Nope.

I will not be ground down.

I will thrive.

I am thriving.

I am alive.

Happy.

Joyous.

Motherfucking.

Free.

And yes.

Proud.

 

 

 

 

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How Did I Get From

May 4, 2016

Here to there and back again?

The day just flew the fuck by.

And here I am again, at my little sky blue, robin’s egg blue, tiny table writing yet again.

I have already written a lot today.

I started and finished my Multi-Cultural paper.

Five pages, 11 pt font, 1.5 paragraph space, 2,653 words–not counting my reference page, I haven’t put that together yet.

And I haven’t proofed it.

I was typing out the last paragraph before work when I realized, holy shit, I have to go to work.

Now.

I mean, go.

I was a few minutes behind my normal walk out the door time.

I had gotten up early to do the paper, I also wrote before I wrote the paper, my standard three pages long hand.

All the writing.

All the time.

I don’t mind though, the words they come and I am continually grateful that I have the words to express the pictures in my head.

There are a lot of scenes, there is a lot of language.

There are a lot of notebooks, blogs, papers, book manuscripts, poems, etc, etc.

I have written (not including the blogs, probably about 45-50 that I scrubbed when I started this previous nanny gig, my employers did a deep back ground check and I did not want them to find anything should they be led to my blog) 1,789 blogs.

HOLY SHIT.

Really?

Each of my blogs is at least 1,000 words.

That is always my goal, get to a 1,000 and if I get past that, fuck yeah, but at least get to the 1,000.

The same goes for the morning writing, at least three pages long hand, there is importance to not losing that muscle for me, often times I am working something out in those pages, even if they seem insubstantial, I can tell when I have skipped, rarely, or skimped, again, rarely, but it does occasionally happen, I can feel it in my bones.

I am many, many, many things.

But I am always a writer.

It does not matter how many views I have had of my blog.

67,771.

Or how many people have visited my blog page.

20,475.

Or how many followers I have.

Not so many.

But most of them I don’t know, they, you are not my friends, you stumbled upon my little blog and read a few of them and subscribed.

How fucking flattering is that?

I have 281 followers.

281 people that have opted to have my blog sent to their e-mail.

Whether or not they read it, well, I have no clue, but I am flattered none the less.

But I don’t write with you in mind.

Oh.

Sometimes I edit what I am going to write about or I allude to something, I can wear my heart on my sleeve, I can be totally transparent, but there’s still so much left unsaid that I am quite aware that I could be writing another blog entirely with a lot of material that I would not dare put here.

That being said, I do like being available and writing about things that matter to me, to my heart, to my being, I like speaking to and about my experience.

I don’t know for the most part what I will write when I sit down to share.

He sent me a photograph of train tracks.

I was reminded of summer days in Wisconsin, living in Windsor, the railroad tracks that cut through town.

Depending on my mood I would go left or right.

If I was going left I was wandering off into fantasy land.

To the left were banks of golden red snap dragons, their sword like leaves cutting through the humid air, there was a farm with horses that were out to pasture, there was a small bridge over a creek, there were blackberry brambles, and off to the left, heading out of Windsor, toward Madison, there was an island of old oak trees in the middle of a corn field.

I would balance on the rails and walk them as far as I could without falling off.

I would see that island of oaks and think about sitting in the grass there, what that perspective would look like.

I would fantasize about sitting under those oaks and the romance of it was dire and daunting and isolating, but sweet too, though bitter, I would nibble at the fantasy, a thin wafer cookie of sustenance to get me through another summer day.

However.

If I was going to the right.

I was running away from home.

Heading toward school.

Going towards the town of DeForest.

It was infrequent that I turned right, but it did happen.

And usually at night.

Or.

Once in a while I would be returning from school at night, too embarrassed to accept a ride home from swimming practice or debate or forensics, or French club, because my mom had forgotten me or was late or, who knows, I would wait and wait and wait.

And at some point.

I would head through town, walk out to the front of the school, hope to hear my mom’s car, knowing all the while that I wouldn’t, I would walk down the left side of the road and hit the railroad tracks heading back to Windsor.

I would hope for a passing train and I would imagine jumping up and catching the last rungs of the metal ladder hanging off the caboose.

Once in a while a train would come.

Most of the time I would scoot down the sides of the shale and quartz rock and let the train pass, berating myself for not trying to jump the train, not having the courage to do so, the where withal to really jump and save the hours of walking ahead of me back to the house in Windsor.

I remember once making the decision.

I could hear the train coming and it was going to be coming around a corner of the rail and it was going to be moving at its slowest, I was determined to jump it.

I gathered myself and sprang up the tracks as the last car rattled by.

I chased it for awhile, “jump, jump, jump,” I admonished myself.

I could just reach it.

If only I were to jump.

I didn’t make the leap.

I think back now and I am glad I did not.

“Argh, you are lucky to be alive,” he texted me.

Yes.

I am.

Who knows where I would have gotten off, if I had gotten off that train heading away from town into a wilderness of unknown possibilities and challenges.

To read the story of The Boxcar Children was one thing entirely.

To think that it could actually happen for me was another.

In one way or another, I realize, I have been catching trains all my life, jumping, trying, falling, stumbling, dreaming of things that are just outside my grasp, just beyond my reach.

Until one day.

I realized I had caught my train.

I had been riding it for years.

Irony that I have dated three train conductors since I moved to San Francisco?

Is it odd.

Or.

Is it God?

I don’t know, I certainly don’t need to analyze it.

Fuck.

I did enough analyzing this morning while I wrote my paper.

Suffice to say.

I am pleased with the work and the gift of being allowed to do the work.

I’ll be riding this train for a while yet.

Dream train.

Steam train.

Good night.

The moon in the window, the tracks a circle on the floor, the little engine that could puff, puff, puffing into the shadows of the night.

I think I can.

I think I can.

I think I can.

And.

I did.

My paper’s done.

My day is done.

I made it.

Tickets please.


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