I can’t help myself: I hear the drums, and I start crying. This is especially embarrassing when I’m standing in front of a junior high school marching band in which the kids are staring out aimlessly and hitting the drums with no passion. It still gets to me. Good thing my kids never went into drums — they would be humiliated by the constant crying of their out -of-control mother.
So there I was today, running down Massachusetts Street, camera in hand to hide my tears as I snapped pictures of the Lawrence High School Marching Lions, of which my son Forest is in a member, playing trombone. They played the fight song, and I snapped away.
I figure it’s the way the drums catch my heartbeat and amplify it. Or maybe how seeing these kids makes me feel the acute passage of time. Or perhaps just the way they all earnestly march with such care and self-consciousness. In any case, I love a parade precisely because of how it breaks open the surprise in the middle of life. Carry on, our not-so-wayward sons and daughters, and don’t forget to throw candy.
Pictures (from top): LHS band (wonderfully directed by Mike Jones), the middle trombone player is Forest, the fiddle float with the great and inspiring Rachel Dirks (director of orchestra), and finally, anybody who parades as sushi gets to be on my blog!