Saying Goodbye Again: You are Like the Rain

Last weekend in DC I saw 2 shows by 2 iconic men. First, it was Paul Simon on his farewell, “Homeward Bound” tour, where he wowed me with his musicianship and imagination on a song called, “Rene and Georgette Magritte At Home with Their Dog After the War.” Backed up by yMusic, the song is full of mystery, delicate laughter, and Simon’s eloquent hand gestures that are themselves so beautiful as to seem surreal.
Two nights later, I was at the Birchmere to hear Nils Lofgren, whose wife, Amy, comped my tickets for his nearly sold-out show. Like Simon, being in the room with Lofgren’s music fills me with joy at his virtuosity, his musicianship, his own clear love of creating something as ephemeral as
music. Nothing compares to the joy of watching a grown man blissed out in the refracted joy of playing guitar with his three  brothers, all on stage, happily jamming to an audience full of family and old friends. It was a heaven.
Then Nils played Like Rain, something he’d written as a man-child, seventeen, my son’s age. I cried. The first anniversary of another beloved son’s fentanyl overdose approaches. My sadness is unspeakable. What to do? Can anyone lessen my anguish, or my family’s? If only we could
stand together and sing.

Embrace others if you can, even at work. Let them know you share their humanity. Perhaps your heart sings a similar song. Maybe you walk the same path. No human alive has has not experienced a deep loss.

Send a note. I have never been so lonely, or so relieved to hear from friends. Nils signed my guitar: Believe. I must. What else can a body do? Believe and love. The only way out is through.

TAGS: grief, loss, Paul Simon, Nils Lofgren, music, comfort, lovingkindness, loneliness, opioids, Fentanyl, comfort the grieving