It apparently came on the back of a friend’s truck down the Ontario highway from Hamilton to London. It was the day My Lovely Bride and I married. The item was an electric piano, the sort that, at that time, wasn’t so small.
Even though I was handling most of the details of our wedding reception on that summer day, somehow My Bride had managed to sneak this instrument into the hall, then cover and hide it until the moment that evening when she stood up and walked over to it and, in her full wedding dress, played something just for me.
A few hundred people sat at their tables and looked on in wonder as she introduced it all and then nailed it. And why wouldn’t she? She had written it herself.
She had also practiced it, this wordless song, over and over in the preceding months, the months of our formal engagement while I was still finishing my reporting days in southwestern Ontario — and planning the wedding — and she was already overseas in Yemen preparing our work and home there.
And even though this creative piece doesn’t have a single word, not even a title, there is something about it that I would say is miraculous. Because in its notes, like letters that are placed just so one after the other, My Bride somehow captured something about me that I could and couldn’t see — something maybe boyish and joyous — in a sort of mystery, like love itself.
My Bride still sits at the piano in our home, on both sides of the ocean, and plays that song. And my blood still jumps whenever she does. And while I can’t explain it so well, I can say that this, maybe, is why even after these years I still like to refer to my wife as “My Bride.”
Even now, even when the kids clamour for the piano and play it in any way they can muster, it keeps that moment close.
With all this said, marriage is going under some hard times around the world. For a recent newspaper commentary on this, including a note on My Bride’s beautiful gift on that summer evening, read this.