Children have an innate sense of their ancestry. I was a child of the city it’s streets my paths, always under the watchful eye of my warden – mother.
Dirt was to be avoided at all possible cost, so I never dug my hands into the fertile soil of my village in the heart of Lithuania, or tasted the readying harvest that dirt would remember.
I never stole a nip of poitin only the Manischewitz which, in our home, masqueraded as wine fit for drinking. It is only now in my second childhood that the ancestry very deep in my DNA has finally found purchase in my mind and soul.
They were not optional in our family, once a week, half an hour, that and at least 20 minutes daily, the youngest got the choice of times.
He quit after a year, his sister was three years in and went on another and I was eight years staring at the 88 keys, so many of which would never get used, useless as were the pedals I couldn’t reach at first and rarely needed later.
It was upright, as I was supposed to be, but only was in sight of my teacher, and I thought Bill Evans had it right, leaning over the keys insuring that they wouldn’t make an escape.
I stopped when my parents realized how much they had spent on what they would never enjoy and I would as soon forget.
Strangely enough I can imagine Segasa Tokugawa standing on the parapet of Osaka Castle saying only a fool like Toyotomi either father or son would wage a war on Korea to expand his empire and stand here and say mission accomplished while so many at home mourned the loss of sons or innocence, or both but things will be better now for I have learned the lesson of history.