Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Future's Not Always Ours to See

I have not been able to get the lyrics to this song out of my head since I heard it this past Friday.
Que Sera Sera
Whatever will be will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que Sera Sera

The song, which originally was featured in "The Man Who Knew Too Much" in 1956, later went on to become the theme song for "The Doris Day Show"(1968-1973). It was selected as the backdrop to the final number of the 277 danceproject last week. The choice contrasted beautifully in a creative and unique modern dance. While the title was "I Forget", for me, it evoked memories.

My mother always loved that song and would sing it around the house when we were kids, with or without Doris Day accompanying her on the stereo. I harbored a fascination, not just with the catchy melody, but also with that picture perfect photograph of Doris on the album cover, every blond hair in place, her eyes seeming to be sparkling off the jacket, as though someone had sprinkled fairy dust on her.

I remember growing up my mother’s response to the difficult questions I wanted answers to was often Que Sera Sera.

I didn’t always like that answer. I was too curious. In much the same way, I would often skip to the last page in a novel, to see how it all turned out, I was certain the answers were there someplace, ready and waiting. But still, maybe my mother and Doris Day were on to something I wasn’t. Maybe not every story already had the ending written.

It made more sense Friday night as I learned from my cousin Jeanne who was sitting next to me that her mother had also loved this song and had also sung it around the house.

It occurred to me that perhaps it was also that generation’s way of trying to impart to us the concept of surrender. That as much as we are able to influence and create in our lives, that we also have to let go of trying to steer it too much. There are some things that we simply cannot know in advance.

I am certain my mother and my aunt both did not know back when they were singing Que Sera Sera to us, that one Friday night far into the future I would sit next to my cousin watching her daughter, Nicole Phillipidis, perform in a piece she wrote and choreographed for a dance company she founded, much less that it would have inspired me to write this blog.

The future’s not ours to see. Que Sera Sera.

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