Harry Wolff

You can't escape my laugh.


June 8, 2010
Read time 2 minutes

Music, the conscious arrangement of sound. It’s as old as us. Music is in our bones. It's in our hearts. Be it rain hitting a gutter or a harp being strummed: music is universal.

Yet there are so many different types of music. No piece exactly like another, each as individual as the snowflake we usually use to describe a person. The myriad possible combinations of arranged sound afford us the luxury that originality will never be exhausted. What joy I take from such truth - from such assurance.

And what of those musical permutations? To each mood a melody can accent and make flush with color. The strike of a piano key when played on a sunny day can create an unnatural brightness that is unabashedly welcome. The repeated striking of piano keys can put a grin on your face so wide that it would hurt if not rested. And what a welcome pain that would be.

Yet these moods and tunes are perfect compliments. Just as peanut butter and jelly is an eternal marriage so too is music and emotion. And to those who object to the union I implore you to inspect the silence you hear and see how its silent harmony warms your blood.

For every human has a song that is played in their heart. Be it a symphony or rustling wind, music will always be with you. It will hold your hand as you longingly gaze into the infinite horizon. It will squeeze tight as you wonder thoughts without answers. And it will keep you warm as the wind chills your arms - the goosebumps remaining a reminder of your peace.

And how can one song fit one mood for one person? Can two share such an experience - despite distance? As one lies on a beach in California one dives into the Mediterranean Sea, each hears the relaxing crash of waves. Their breathing slows and their heartbeat eases, relaxing under the dry sky and listening to its chaotic rhythm.

Must the language of a song be the same as your native tongue? Can an opera created in Italy evoke a similar reaction to its performance in Peru? Without translation the audience gasps and jumps as if they were natural speakers. The eerie transcendence of an opera’s performance is conducted with ease and grace.

Yet from day to day you decide the soundtrack that accompanies you. Not only is it hand-selected and voluntarily observed, it is normal and acceptable for music to be with you on your mundane and extraordinary experiences. And later when you rest at home, you’ll hear the same song that was playing when you got gas for your car and you’ll smell the gasoline in your chair. How amazing are these visceral melodies to evoke such resolute memories.

And so I continue on my way, listening all the while. No day can pass devoid of music, no matter its type. The days the sun beats down I fill with tunes of yellow hue. The days the moon shines persistently I bathe in varieties of blue. And the days that my eyes remain closed I hum to myself, keeping myself warm and content in my head.