I haven’t posted a Friday Refrain in two weeks and I have stuff written, ready to go but before posting that I wanted to take a moment in observance of Sunday evening. Readers of the blog know that I love live music - as a participant and as a fan with most of my experience being as a fan in the last few years. I love festivals. I started writing festival fan fiction earlier this year and then let it drift away on that busy sea of life. (secretly I’m going to work on it over the winter) I also have anxiety in crowd situations. So it’s fair to say that I have no ability to conceive how harrowing it must have been for all those on Sunday night. How heavy the world must feel to the families of those who were killed, hurt or affected. The endless train of "what if’s" that must be trailing through the minds of those who attended, who performed and all their families and friends.
I have a billion thoughts and I can’t really find the way to make them cohesive - which is odd that I’m even trying to write through this then, I know. But here’s a bit of it. I read a few articles from a few years ago about the disappearance of communal singing - it just popped up a few times in a thread of research I’ve been doing lately. Which I found immediately laughable. There are innumerable music festivals going on every year, every inch of the country, there are tons of shows being performed every night as well. All different genres, all different classes, races, really anyway you want to divide and categorize a group of people. And yeah, those groups of people aren’t going to agree on everything, they may not agree on one thing but you know what is probably going to happen in 90% of those happenings? Someone’s going to dance, even if it’s just a little toe tapping at an orchestra. And there will be singing. Glorious, all together singing. And in that glorious communal singing, there is unfettered freedom.
So it doesn’t really surprise me in a time where we are confronted incessantly with horror and pain and hopelessness that where we are starting to see this fear and hate irrationally being violently demonstrated is at nameless crowds of people enjoying and loudly expressing freedom. There are many things that we can and should do in order to prevent and end these ridiculous tragedies. Things like stepping over the fear and hate, considering each other with kindness and compassion, listening beyond our own experiences, and most importantly remembering that we are all living breathing thinking feeling beings. And then we need to take a deep breath, open our mouths and all together sing.