CE3K: 2009

I was biking home through Central Park one night when I saw a light up ahead on the Park Loop. I figured it was a low-flying NYPD helicopter and paid it no mind. It was hovering directly in front of my path, illuminating the ground with a strong spotlight. I wanted to avoid the light but there was no way to do it without going off the road and into the grass. Plus, something drew me to the light. Something I couldn’t explain. I rode right into the spotlight and stopped. I looked up but could see nothing but blinding light. The earth shook and the trees swayed like in a hurricane. My bike and my heart rattled so loudly I thought I would shatter into a thousand pieces.

Then, suddenly, the light was gone.The next few weeks were a strange time. Jo couldn’t understand why I had sunburn on only half of my face. I would catch my cat whispering whenever I turned my back. I made strange sculptures with my mashed potatoes. I kept trying to change my iPhone ringtone to some song I’d never heard before but couldn’t stop humming.One night, while working late at the office, I decided I had to get out. I thought I’d pick Jo up at school, since her class was just about to get out. When I got out of the 66 Street Subway Station, I saw the lights. The mothership was landing. And I finally recognized the song I coudn’t get out of my head. The musical juggernaut had come to take me.

(Juilliard School, 65 St & Broadway, Manhattan)