It is the writer's privilege to help man endure by lifting his heart.
For the past several years, my Monday mornings have been spent with the boys - my boys, Harrison and Houston. When our daughter, Hannah, ended her homeschooling years and went to Norris Middle School, I entered a four-year season of being home with only our two youngest yahoos. I enjoyed every minute of the chaos that is inevitable with growing boys at home all day. Okay, almost every minute.
The decision to send them both to public school this year was not an easy one, but I knew in my heart it was time. Now, they are on to new adventures and I am genuinely excited for them. The first couple of weeks they were at school, Hannah was still living here at home, as she hadn't left for college yet. She left last weekend. And here I sit. My first Monday alone.
I have always loved Mondays. A new week and a fresh start. And contrary to the thought conveyed by a certain popular song from 1971, a rainy Monday would be just about perfect for this creative. But today is not that day. It is a hot, windy Nebraska day, and I am beginning a new season. I have been stockpiling things to do for the past few months; things that needed my attention, but not necessarily immediate attention. I put some of them in a literal pile, and others in a pile in my brain and told myself I would begin tackling that to-do list on "Monday." "Monday" is here. I guess it seems fitting I would spend this first day of my new normal with "The Boys." Not my boys. THE Boys - Robert and Richard Sherman, songwriters extraordinaire.
The documentary that details the complicated relationship between these two brothers, has been in a basket beside the desk in my office for months. Today, I watched it. I laughed, I cried, I took notes, I was inspired to write, and I was compelled to quit writing. I guess you could say it was a pretty normal day for a songwriter.
One of the simplest, but most profound, things I took away from the film was something the boys' father told them. In regard to songwriting, he said, "Keep it singable, keep it simple, and keep it sincere." I love that. In the midst of the long hours and hard work that it takes to craft a song so that is has maximum impact on the listener, that advice is key. Singable, simple, and sincere. Looking through the catalog of their work, I'd say the boys took that advice to heart.
It's been a good Monday with the boys. But I still miss Harrison and Houston.