Wednesday, May 26, 2010

First Chair

My daughter playing a solo at her spring concert.

I have a secret history with the flute. My first love was an island boy who played it beautifully. At the time we were both an awkward twelve, painfully shy, and tossed together by desegregation. I don't know why we gravitated to each other, but I loved to listen to him play, and he insisted on reading all of my stories. He would walk me home after school, and we held hands the entire way (which was the total extent of our physical contact and, at the time, beyond daring.) As soon as our parents found out they put an end to it, which was my first lesson in racism.

Thirty years later my daughter began playing the flute. I'm tone deaf, and her father played the violin when he was a boy, so I'm pretty sure she didn't get it from either of us. This is why I like to think that a little of my island boy's heart and music stayed with me.