Saturday, January 7, 2017

Ten Minutes' Worth of Memoir Free Writing

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When did a community you were part of use music to overcome a difficult time?

 It's my first day back at high school, straight from my father's shiva. I'm standing in a so-far empty classroom when a dance is announced over the PA system and they play some of Marvin Gaye's "Sexual Healing". I burst into tears, after not having cried at my dad's (z"l) funeral, because the music sounds so, so good. It's the first music I've heard in seven days. No one knows my father's dead, other than teachers; that's how at arms-length I kept everyone back then, punning compulsively to distract them from my attraction to the girls among them, if possible.

The music -- that particular song -- reminded me of my continuous and mostly unrequited horniness and also made me resolve to go to the dance that weekend. Anything to get out of the house, where I was stuck with my grieving mother, my older sisters having left years prior.

That song reminded me: I'm still alive. I'm still alive and I'm sexual and I'm reachable. That song pulled snatched away my numbness.

That song makes me feel the same way every time I hear it. Only I know, though, till now. Get up, get up!*

*Written during the Reading & Writing Club at my synagogue last Wednesday, and I didn't write about my community because the fastest thing that came to mind when I got the prompt in bold above was about the first music I heard when I returned from my dad's (z"l) shiva. The prompt came from

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