Poetry and Adult Children, Part 3

Below the perpetual buzz of our busy caregiving lives is another channel, softer in tone and kinder in character. We sense it in vertical moments where rushing and worrying get sidetracked, the chance second where life sparks back a fragment of wonder and joy.

Annie Lightheart’s wonderful poem The Second Music captures the mood and impact of this restorative melody. It is a poem that should be read every morning before we are so easily swept away…

The Second Music
by Annie Lighthart

Now I understand that there are two melodies playing,
one below the other, one easier to hear, the other

lower, steady, perhaps more faithful for being less heard
yet always present.

When all other things seem lively and real,
this one fades. Yet the notes of it

touch as gently as fingertips, as the sound
of the names laid over each child at birth.

I want to stay in that music without striving or cover.
If the truth of our lives is what it is playing,

the telling is so soft
that this mortal time, this irrevocable change,

becomes beautiful. I stop and stop again
to hear the second music.

I hear the children in the yard, a train, then birds.
All this is in it and will be gone. I set my ear to it as I would to a heart.