There was no school today and we all got to sleep in. Big deal, right?
It was a big deal, because while listening to Morning Edition, I drifted and dreamed of all of you.
We were gathered in a classroom, each one sitting at a desk. It was the kind of classroom and desks that high school students find familiar. Debra was our teacher - located somewhere out of my line of site, presumably at the front of the room. Each one of us had come with something prepared to read - a poem had been assigned. I, of course, felt unprepared, unworthy and anxious. (typical performance anxiety dream)
Debra asked us to share and the first person, Agnes, I think, began to sing her poem. (Some of your faces were obscured, but your voices were recognizable.)
“Oh no, I’ve got it all wrong,” I thought. “Lyrics. rhyme scheme, melodic, verse and refrain. These are songs. I clearly missed the directions on this assignment.” (Mine was rhymeless and would never fit into a song.)
Then quite suddenly, as if by magic, (in dreams, it’s always sudden, always magical) an acccompaniment track began to play, in just the right key, with just the right instrumentation, and just the right time signature/rhythm to fit the poem being shared. I turned around and noticed that the room was full of people now. Our group had grown to include acquaintances from from the other parts of my life. Complete strangers were in attendance, too. Apparently each one had something to offer.
Karin B. began her poem and amazingly, it was in the same key and similar rhythmic structure as the previous reader. It was lovely, lyrical, sparkling. The song progressed and with each reader’s contribution, I became more anxious. My poem was meant for speaking. It could not be sung. Vinita began to move up and down the rows, handing out looseleaf notebook pages of handwritten material. It turns out that Nick was not in the room, but he had submitted something in writing. Thoughtful and intense, it was not meant for singing either. I felt better. Vinita whispered encouragement to each person she passed. I felt even better. The poem/song continued and improved as one voice after another added unique rhythms and the music track altered to accommodate individual changes.
“Hey,” I thought. “This is really good.” And then I woke up.
Of course I woke up before I had to read my work, so I have no idea what I wrote. Neither can I remember the details of the song. But I think that what I saw and heard in the dream was in some way a glimpse of perfection. We are in fact, part of a holy song, created for us, created by us. Sometimes we are in sync. The rhythmic flow is energizing and gracious. Sometimes we are out of tune and need to listen to find our voice again. Sometimes we offer an alternative. The beauty of this song is that it belongs, as we all do, to God and somehow, some miraculous way, whatever we contribute adds to the harmony.I should sleep in more often.