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A Week's Time

by Cathlene Pineda

My mother called in tears to tell me that my father had suffered a stroke after complications in surgery, and it was unclear if he would make it through the night. My sister and I immediately jumped on a plane to Minnesota, terrified we were not going to make it to say our goodbyes. “A Week’s Time," written on the plane back to Los Angeles seven days later, reflects the precarious ledge we balance on as we tiptoe through life.

During the course of that epic week, I watched my father painfully, slowly, go from a coma to talking, sitting up, and eventually, making very bad (but they were always bad) jokes, a sign that the dad that we were certain we had lost, was still inside. I watched a rebirth, a new beginning, from death to life. The ephemeral nature of everything became fraught with tension, magnified by sadness and enhanced by the beauty of life. My music became a direct reflection of this existence, and the pieces i wrote after the incident, "A Week's Time," being the first, are the living embodiment of this.