spirit overhead

On Saturday evening, after a long day of house things and friend things, I took two of my boys and went up to Salt Lake in order to hear the Utah Baroque Ensemble perform in the lovely Cathedral of the Madeline. Every time we have been in that building it has been in silence as we walk around and look in all of the corners and up to the amazing vaulted ceilings.

This time every square inch of the cathedral was filled with Latin, German, and even a southern U.S. dialect as we were treated to ancient music as well as gospel pieces. During the first cycle of centuries-old Latin church music, my almost-eighteen year-old looked up from his sketch book and said, "Mom, did you feel how that music echoed and moved around the space?" I did feel it, but I was especially glad he did. That was important to me to have him experience that. From my ten year-old I got a few, "Cool"s, which were just as terrific.

I got pretty teary-eyed as the second song finished and the spirit flew overhead through the rafters. Before it soared too high it brushed right past me and squoze between me and my boys on our creaky wooden pew. I said a silent "thank you" and continued listening to the breath-taking music, but I kept finding myself looking in all of those dark corners and well-lit painted walls and ceilings to see if I could see it. To see if I could just catch one more glimpse.

I know I don't always pay attention when that same good spirit squeezes around me and my family at home. I know that real-life temporal concerns deaden parts of me. I want to be more sensitive to those times when the spirit is there. I want to be a cathedral.


Luann | October 28, 2008 at 10:17 AM

I love your description of the sacredness and spirit of that place and the music. You are a poet.

Little GrumpyAngel | October 28, 2008 at 10:34 PM

Your boys are so lucky to have a Mom like you who surrounds them with beautiful things and exposes them to different art forms. I'm happy that you had that exquisite experience when music touched you and opened your mind to be more sensitive to the spirit.

"I want to be a cathedral." A perfect sentence to close this touching post.

Heidi | October 29, 2008 at 9:58 AM

Ohhh, my gosh, that is so beautiful! I want to be a cathedral! There you go with those awesome metaphors, again. This one is my favorite!

Gideon Burton | October 30, 2008 at 7:41 AM

I think sometimes the Spirit does take flight within us, and if we make space for it the way a cathedral makes space for the holy, then it can soar within us. I think sometimes we are the bird and the Spirit is the cathedral, and if we choose we can soar within it. And at a great concert like you described, you maybe can't tell the difference which is which, and that is a fine state indeed.

charrette | October 30, 2008 at 9:05 AM

Beautifully written. I want to be a cathedral. And describing the movement of spirit, and then how it gracefully moves you. Love this! You should send it to the Bloggers Annex.