The Music Man

Stop! And hear the music! Photo by Jefferson Lucena.

The Music Man sits;
The Music Man plays—
While the busy old world
Goes about its ways.
And very few pause
To hear the song;
They don’t have patience
To wait that long.

Yet, no one knows
How long the score;
And ere they’re aware,
The song is o’er.
And they’re left with regret,
Rising sure as the dawn—
Opportunity missed,
Opportunity gone.

Then into our minds
Comes the Music Man;
He readies his instrument
As only he can.
He’s sitting and ready;
He’s about to begin—
He beacons to you,
And then beacons again.

Now you must choose
But please choose soon.
Will you rush about
Or hear the tune?
For the chance that’s now,
Never stays—
What will you do
When the music plays?

March 14 is pi day.  Yes, I typed that right.  Pi. You know, 3.141592654.  I could keep going—indefinitely in fact—but I will spare you the never-ending digits.  Old Archimedes developed a really close approximation about 200 BC.  Little did he know that today we would celebrate with fruit-filled pastries and pizzas—far away from anything math related.  (Who wants math ruining a good meal anyway?!)

I took the occasion to make homemade pizza—a couple thin-crust sausage spinach ones and a couple chicken alfredo.  I love toppings too, a special cheese blend, mushrooms, olives, sometimes pepperoni, ham, and pineapple.  The chicken alfredo turned out the best.

But all the greasy pizza goodness got me thinking.  Sometimes life is like a busy pizza.  There can be a lot going on.  It can be easy to get distracted from what is most important.  Let me share an example.

Nearly six months ago I decided I wanted to do a couple specific things.  I had six months to do them, plenty of time, more than enough time.  Which means, of course, that I did nothing right away!  A couple months passed.  I thought about my commitment now and then but there was still plenty of time.  Then, before I knew it, I was down to the last month.  I made some plans for action and then, as luck would have it, got sick.  Not to worry, I told myself, I still had time.

Well, here I am, thwarted again.  This last week the Coronavirus scare caused all sorts of disruptions, closures, and cancellations.  What I had planned to do is now not possible.  My window of opportunity suddenly and unexpectedly slammed shut.  Was it just not meant to be? No, I was just too preoccupied and procrastinated too long and lost my chance.

It’s like the experiment of a famed and gifted musician.  He dressed in shabby clothes, took a rare and expensive instrument, went into a public place, and began to play.  People would normally dress up, pay money, and congregate in impressive venues to hear the musician.  But here, in disguise, with the music freely offered, most never even paused as they passed on their way.  Opportunity missed.

So, I will chase my regret with another piece of pizza, and try harder in the future to pause when the music plays.

Written: March 14, 2020

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