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Archive for November 28th, 2012

Two weeks later, a new semester began at Lincoln High.
In the band rehearsal room, the members of C Band were waiting for their leader — were waiting for their destinies as musicians to unfold.
Helmholtz stepped onto the podium, and rattled his baton against his music stand.  “The Voices of Spring,” he said.  “Everybody hear that?  The Voices of Spring?”
There were rustling sounds as the musicians put the music on their stands.  In the pregnant silence that followed their readiness, Helmholtz glanced at Jim Donnini, who sat on the last seat of the worst trumpet section of the worst band in school.
His trumpet, John Philip Sousa’s trumpet, George M. Helmholtz’s trumpet, had been repaired.
“Think of it this way,” said Helmholtz.  “Our aim is to make the world more beautiful than it was when we came into it.  It can be done.  You can do it.”
A small cry of despair came from Jim Donnini.  It was meant to be private, but it pierced every ear with its poignancy.
“How?” said Jim.
“Love yourself,” said Helmholtz, “and make your instrument sing about it.  A-one, a-two, a-three.”  Down came his baton.
  —   Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
From his book: “Welcome to the Monkey House
From the short story: “The Kid Nobody Could Handle
[Loving yourself is where it always begins.  We are each given our own instrument.  What is your instrument?  —  KMAB]
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