Wednesday, September 05, 2012


This morning I heard a song sung by Jane Doe with backup vocals and piano by sarah McLachlan and her band. Jane Doe and I were sharing a seat on the LRT. “I will rmember you,” sang Jane. “Will you remember me?” I expect that Jane was hearing Sarah in her earbuds. I was hearing only Jane, Jane singing a solo on the train. I was careful not to turn in her direction, lest she realize that I had heard, lest she might suffer, for the whole day and maybe the entire week, the embarrassment of knowing she had been heard. . Meanwhile, my cerebral cortex went to work, pulling up the sounds I imagined that Jane was hearing. “Don’t let your life pass you by,” Jane sang softly, smiling as she sang. The train rolled on. By the time I left my seat, I wasn’t hearing Jane anymore. But I still heard Sarah. An early morning concert for me and Jane, all for the price of a train ticket. For Jane, whose real name I do not know, I hummed as I walked the path to Hope House, “I will remember you.” It was a good day for singing to yourself. It’s the first day of class. Most of the students and some of the professors are paying more attention to the challenge of figuring out where they need to be than they are to the noises made by the people who pass them on the sidewalk. So I comfort myself with the belief that nobody heard me singing. “Weep not for the memories.” Anyway, it wasn’t really a solo. Sarah was backing me up.

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