Everything is Governed by the Rule that One Thing Leads to Another


My friend Rachel recently posted a short essay I wrote over the winter on her blog. The essay is one I wrote when I was grappling with my little boy being not so little any more, yet Rachel writes in parenthesis, “For some reason I am thinking of Ani Defranco out of nowhere.”

Rachel and I met at grad school orientation and instantly became friends. We are both moms; our boys birthdays are only two weeks apart. We bonded first because we were different from the rest. And we became friends because we are very much alike.

But she had no idea how much of an Ani fan I was (am). I had never told her that Ani’s music was the soundtrack to my college years; how her lyrics coursed through me in the late nineties as I waded my way through relationship troubles and my first tastes of feminist criticism.

Today I dug out an old CD to play while I alternated between cleaning and writing. Living in Clip, which is a two-disk set but I can only find disk two.

The fifth song is “Firedoor” and I sing loudly. Halfway through the song, the music softens and she switches into “Amazing Grace” for a bit before going back to singing about catching her lover with someone else.

Someone played a recording of “Amazing Grace” at my father’s funeral. About halfway through the song my sister leaned over and whispered to me, “They should be playing Guns N Roses.” My dad liked loud rock.

Two years later, my sister had a daughter and she named her Patience. Today, she turns ten.


4 thoughts on “Everything is Governed by the Rule that One Thing Leads to Another

  1. Lovely. We were taken out of context..that first orientation…yes – different from all the rest, and then so much alike. Love that your sister said that are your dad’s funeral and that she named her daughter Patience. Title is from Hour Follows Hour, right? Funny how Ani is weaving through our words and our days now and our in-between moments…I love it. Impressed with how much you are already writing here. I somehow knew you needed to do this and I already feel patterns and themes emerging, points connecting, important things leading one to another.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! Hour Follows Hour- I love that one. I love that you’ve brought me back to these old(ish) songs. You should do a cover cd!!
      And thank you, thank you, thank you for pushing me into this. It is not as scary as I thought it would be.


  2. I love hearing about the beginning of your friendship…then music shaping the day… And then Amazing Grace at your dad’s funeral and your sister whispering they should’ve been playing Guns N Roses–feels like the beginning of a short story (or long essay). There is so much happening in that one sentence.


  3. You know me too well- I have used that as part as the beginning of an essay, an unfinished mess of a document buried on my laptop. Perhaps it is time for it to come back….


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