Buck and I watched another segment of Ken Burn's instantly iconic film, The National Parks: America's Best Idea, and talked into the night about a cross-country road trip to Carlsbad Caverns, the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Glacier and The Tetons that we have been teasing each other with for ages. We talked about the lure of rigging up the old van and driving all the way.
Finally, Buck yawned and stood. "Well, that's it for me. I'm going to bed," he said. "How about you?"
I looked over at the piano. "I'll be along in a few minutes."
Buck knows me so well. "You play as long as you want. I haven't heard enough of The Beast lately. Come on, Maggie."
I sat in the semi-dark room, with only the piano light providing illumination. This kind of late-night playing is very intimate. It's not high octane performance. It's not practice. It's meditational plunking. It's quiet, keenly felt joy. I thank my sister, Flo, for transmitting her love of music to me when she was a teenager and I was a child. It was the gift of a lifetime.
"Love is still the only dream I know."
from Seasons of the Heart, by the late John Denver