She sang the songs and the seasons of my life as we grew up together. We danced to “Aretha” at our wedding reception, always pausing to recite the letters, as if dancing would make us misspell RESPECT. This anthem of hers, along with making us “feel like a natural woman,” reminded us we were always due respect and to settle for nothing less.
We lost weight together. Nothing new about vinegar and honey. We gained weight together. I guess we forget to check on each other. She was a little older, but that gave her the extra wisdom she needed to sing us along our way. I cried when she lost love, making me hold mine a little tighter.
Of course we had that tight bond of being PKs, a bitter sweet that flowed through every song she sang, in spite of its theme. And she was no joke on the keyboard as you still managed to feel the Holy Spirit in her fingers that pounded out the story of another love gone away.
Always loved Aretha. Someone just asked the question on FB, “What gift did the Lord withhold from you to keep you humble?” My answer has always been, to that question and any like it, to sing like Aretha Franklin. If I had such a voice I would have never shut up. But the world only needed one Aretha Franklin. She has been more than enough. She has filled that role so completely. So uniquely. Even unwittingly. She has blessed so many people with her voice. With her smile. Her voice has sparked a child, themed a movement, saved a soul and provided pure joy throughout her decades.
Sing some more Aretha! I know you’re singing and dancing in glory!
And we’re shedding a tear for our loss.