What Mumford and Sons taught me about lives of quiet desperation.

January 7, 2012 § Leave a comment

Get over your hill and see
what you find there
with grace in your heart

and flowers in your hair.

I woke on Thursday morning to a dim sky, a cold floor, and a wave of sadness so immediate that I was frightened. Day two on the job and already I felt trapped and spent.

Hopelessness does not come naturally to me.

I braced myself on the way to work by listening to my favorite artists– dear Mumford and Sons. I felt it a tonic to imbibe the hope and triumph that Mumford works into even their most plaintive songs. As I reluctantly stepped off the Green Line to the last leg of my commute, I found myself wishing I could be like Marcus Mumford and his friends. They found their way to escape the weary silence of the workplace, playing wonderful music for a living.

Yet the vision I conjured up of singing at Bonnaroo didn’t ring true. I wanted to pinpoint the source of my envy. Bands, after all, put in longer hours than I, and celebrity and riches can hardly be worth tabloid gossip and paparazzi.  I don’t yearn for the life of a troubadour.

Then what?

Well, Mumford and his friends love what they do, and they do what they are best at. The fruition of talent is inspiring to see.

Isn’t this the reason we marvel at and envy the success of the “lucky few” who master something and spin a livelihood from it? We admire those who do as their hearts appoint them to, who govern their own lives with the use of the talents that God gave them.

We’re meant to nurture what gifts we are given. To follow them to fruition and give them out again.

Realizing this, I understood the dread and the vague despair that clung about my shoulders — walking, as I was, towards something that promised no fulfillment. Something that had already suffocated a happy dream or two within me.

Well, recognition is the first step towards change.


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