by Kathleen Howland.
When I was a child, on most Fridays, my dad, mom, brother and I would travel to Cape Cod to visit my grandparents. For my father, this drive would come after a long day of work, during which he had already commuted from our home, an hour outside of the city, to Boston, where he worked as an accountant, and back home again. He was an intense man, and during these drives to the Cape we were often silent, on edge – unsure how to interpret his sullen and grave demeanor.
After we arrived, my grandmother would typically begin playing a mix of classical music, folk songs and pop songs on her spinet piano – and I would watch my dad’s face transform: his jaw would slacken, while the lines between his eyebrows softened, lifting the intensity of thought that always seemed to burden him.
This was my first experience of the power of music.
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