11 In My Life.mp3 Listen on Posterous

My cousin passed away earlier this week. The day after he died, one of my aunts called to ask me to play a song at his funeral. The song, which she said Tony had picked out himself when they hastily discussed plans for his memorial, is In My Life by the Beatles. Tony, said my aunt, had requested that his friend Mike join me in playing the song. She said Tony was very specific with her about the song he wanted and about who he wanted to play it. I was a little skeptical, plus my voice is just coming back after taking three days of unscheduled leave, but Tony was a great guy and out of respect for him, I agreed.

The guy who I'm playing with, Mike, happens to be an old friend of mine. He and I were in a Christian band for many years called Stained Glass. He came over tonight to my parent's house where I'm staying and where we spent hours uncountable recording songs on a two track reel to reel recorder back in the day. It was a lot fun getting back together after many years; Mike talking the whole time about how rusty he was, though he sounded great. As we rehearsed and shared stories and caught up on time lost, he told me about his last visit with Tony, and about something that happened during that visit which had mystified him at the time.

It was a little over a week before he passed. Tony, he said, was looking pretty bad and was having difficulty speaking. The last thing that Tony said confused both him and the nurse who was in the room at the time. He said, "Don't forget the song." Mike looked at the nurse and the nurse looked at him. "Is he talking about some song that you used to play together?" she asked. "I don't think so," Mike said.

Tony motioned for the whiteboard that he had been using to make numerous requests of his nurses. On it he wrote, In My Life.