Wednesday, October 22, 2008

On the subject of smiles

Shamma Sabir -- the girl the Sunshine Waltz was composed for
We were at a piano concert one evening. The early winter wind blew past the windows of the church and made odd sounds, but they merely added melody to the music coming from the piano. This was truly a treat for me. I rarely have a chance to listen to someone else play the piano and never have I heard someone so talented play before. He was an elderly man... the light shone off his white hair and made him look distinguished in his tuxedo. His fingers flew across the keyboard as he made his way through Mozart and Chopin and other masters.

As I listened, my eyes wandered idly over the crowd. I found that besides my siblings and myself there were scarcely any other young people in the room. Without thinking, I studied one of them. She was about sixteen years old. Her hair was dyed and cut in an odd hairstyle. She had earrings in places that weren’t her ears and she had lots of makeup on. She wasn’t dressed like us, either, I noted.

Suddenly, she looked up and our eyes met. We both grinned at each other at the same instant. We both loved music. We both were enjoying ourselves very much.

No, she wasn’t like me, but we were both friends from that moment. We never spoke to each other and we never saw each other again, but I will never forget her and that smile.

When I related this to my adopted Grandpa, he said, “Isn’t that funny how it is? A perfect stranger can smile at you and you feel like you’ve been friends forever.” He smiled at a memory, “One time, I was driving and had stopped. There was another gal coming from the opposite direction and I motioned for her to go first. We both smiled at each other and you know what? That brightened my whole day!”

A Congo proverb says, “The teeth are smiling but where’s the heart?” I look at pictures of people and I see a smile on their lips, but their eyes aren’t smiling at all. We know someone whose face is half paralyzed (birth defect) so when he smiles, it’s not his mouth, but his eyes that smile. He has one of the most sincere smiles I’ve ever seen.

There are different types of smiles and some that I do not care for. But I love smiles just plumb full of joy!

1 comment:

Lindsey said...

SO good talking to you this afternoon!

Keep smilin'! ;)