There are mornings when I can’t wait for Julia to step on that bus so that I can sit and write. Oh, how glorious is that? This is one of those days. Snow is falling, quieting my world and looking for all the world just like I imagined this winter sort and clean out would look from my dining room windows. I have been dealing with two types of things, sheet music and the old greeting cards that my in-laws sent to one another in the 1940’s and early 50’s. Both are just loaded with sentimental, nostalgic feelings, and it has been hard to rip them out of my tight fists. But why save?
The music, two full boxes of it, David’s music for his base and drums and some original compositions of his. Many violin, trumpet, and band books and sheet music from Cheshire. My contribution to those boxes was musical scores, band sheet music, choir music, and piano cheat books (that I used when I was singing with strangers, not that I ever played.). As I went through those boxes, I wanted to save everything to remember it all, but I do remember it, admittedly not as clearly as when I see the music. Still, it is from a time gone by. I have not looked at any of it for more than five years, and someone can use at least some of the material. So, it goes to a friend of a friend, a young many who is a music teacher by day and a drag queen by night. Oh, I love that! I am sure he will not value all of it. He may throw lots of it away, but maybe he will save the score to South Pacific and sing “Some Enchanted Evening” or give the Susuki violin books to a little boy who is just starting violin. And then our love of music, our experience of music, and how it enriched so many corners of our lives will live on in places and people that I will never know.
The cards are from a scrap book that David’s mother kept. She seemed to have saved every greeting card that anyone would have sent her or attached to a gift between the time that she was engaged until just after her children were born. I am imagining that there was no time for such time consuming past times once the kids were born. David got the scrap book as part of the boxes that his father was cleaning out of the attic. That was before we moved to Madison. At some time, before Madison, the scrap books’ black pages got damp and blew up like a sponge. The cards were not affected at all but the book took up an entire box. In my very early sorting before David died, it was an easy way to get rid of a box. I took all of the cards off of the pages of the scrap book and threw the book away. One might wonder why I did not throw everything away -- ah, my tight little fists held memories that were not even mine very close. I did not feel it was my place to throw the cards away, they belonged to David. David did nothing with them and so they sat until now.
The cards have no collecting value. My cousin, who is a poster collector, said that many people saved greeting cards from that time and no one collects them. Interesting that Innie was just doing what others of her generation did, and equally interesting that my mother didn’t. So, even though these cards held no sentimental value to me, in fact, I don’t know who signed many, many of the cards, it was still hard to decide to get rid of them. But once I wrote my cousin, the cards were on their way out. With no value to any collector or historical society, I decided that I would offer the cards to Julia’s art teacher and she assured me that she could find plenty of uses. I will save a few for the chron files, a few for Cheshire that she could recycle and use -- they are signed by Inie after all and Inez is her first name -- and a few that I can recycle and use. And then the rest will be gone tomorrow.