Music Box Dancer

As a teenager I would get into my mom’s purse and take cigarettes and change. I was a foosball addict and smoked. When she got sick, she asked me to quit smoking. I tried not to in the house. From then on I would ask for foosball money. She passed away in 1980 and took my heart with her. But I always remembered the fragrance of her purse. It was leather and she carried Doublemint Gum all the time. A leather and mint smell was unique. Before she got sick, she bought a 45 record, Frank Mills – Music Box Dancer. It was one I remember her playing the most. I went on with life, but never fully healed from my loss. I withdrew from friends. I started doing a lot by myself. No one’s going to leave me again, I thought.

A few years ago, maybe 2011, I was getting my usual yearly stock of clothes. Levi’s, black t-shirts, underwear and socks. I guess there was music always playing in there when i shopped, I just never paid attention to it. Suddenly, the locked away memory of Music Box Dancer’s piano opening came crashing in on me from the store speakers. My mind stopped and was taken over. The best times of my life returned, even if it was just for one song, it was good enough. The fragrance of minted leather filled the air. The entire time the song played I could see my mom dancing on the cloudy stage. Happy, smiling, the way she always was…

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6 responses to “Music Box Dancer

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  3. What a heartfelt story. The gum, cigarettes, money, music and love. I am so close to my mum, and can imagine I’d be in a similar boat to you when she leaves.

    Liked by 1 person

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