A song for Melody
Sometimes a name and a person go together so well you could say they define each other perfectly. It is impossible to ascertain which came first, the name or the power that emanated from the tiny person who resonated in the hearts of everyone close enough to hear her song, and to share her Melody.
I was an altar boy at her christening. She was only a few hours old, normally a bit early for a christening, but her mother had a "vision" of Melody needing the grace of Baptism to keep the dark forces away.
I marveled at her tiny hands, only born a few hours yet doing complicated finger exercises. If ever God called a voice to sing, or hands to play the piano, it was Melody.
We all heard her voice when she protested the cold water that washed away her Original Sin. She made a sound like none anyone there had ever heard. The sound bounced from solid stone wall across the huge timbers that held the roof in place. As the sound transverse the space between the walls it seemed to gain in volume and timbre. For a few moments everyone there heard the music of the Angels, and enjoyed a feeling of exstacy.
She made no other sound for the next three years.
The Parish Hall was full of people who were enjoying each other at a Pot Luck Dinner. Everyone who was able to walk was there to enjoy the celebration of a good harvest and the pleasure of swapping stories with each other at the long tables with dishes of steaming food being passed along hand to hand.
One of those who attended was the poor little girl named Melody that everyone knew was deaf as a stone. She also had profound learning disabilities. It was if her mind worked as differently as her ears. The nerve bundles from her brain did not go into the inner ear mechanism. She had no inner ear mechanism. It was impossible for doctors to do anything. The nerve bundles had threaded themselves into the spongy bones of her sinus.
Without any fanfare she simply walked away from her mother and went to the piano. Her tiny hands barely reached the keys. The result was the sound of chords almost too sweet for the ear of mere man played by the tiny hands of the little girl. She could barely reach the keys, but she reached everyone there in a way they had never been touched before. Her voice was way too strong for a child, and possessed the qualities usually reserved for professional singers. It seemed to ride the edges of the music pouring from the piano. It provided a delicate lace decoration to the solid sounds from the piano.
Not a word was spoken; there was not a dry eye within hearing distance.
There is a saying. When man makes music he reaches for God, and when other men hear it they hear God reaching for man. From that moment on anyone who heard her knew that God was reaching for them personally.
At that moment she became an integral part of every event that was of significant importance to our community. Our special angel definitely let us know that God himself reached for our heart.
How can we ever communicate what she meant to each of us? She had helped celebrate our highest highs, weddings, christenings, and holiday celebrations.She affirmed our faith, and celebrated marriages, births and death. She has lifted our spirits when we were sad, and expressed our ecstatic joy at the best events of our lives.
God loaned us his special angel for 48 years. She is now gone home to continue her celebration with the other angels who live in the community from which she came.
At her funeral I heard over and over that no one realized the struggle with cancer that this brave woman fought so valiantly without complaint. She never asked anyone for anything. God gave her exactly what she needed and she shared her praise and thanksgiving every time she sat at organ or piano and lifted her voice in song.
I wonder what we will do to fill the void she leaves behind in the buildings that resonated with the songs of the angels.
Perhaps she has left us with an example and an obligation to fill an empty church with the sound of praise.
As she was laid to rest I could think of nothing but the celebration that the angels must be having welcoming her home to the place from whence she came.
Thanks for Melody!
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