eight months

At 8 months old, she dances at the merest suggestion of music.

When I am feeding her dinner and we hear the chimes from the university clock tower across the street. When you drum your fingers or tap your feet in what you did not even realize was a rhythm.

She looks up, full of expectation. Is it time?

Of course it is, Alice. Let’s dance.

Did you know that babies are born predisposed to move to a beat?

That’s what they say.

That even newborns can detect rhythm. (It might be why we have symphonies at all). That only a few months later, they can move along with it. That not long after, they can clap in time. 

Only humans can dance like that, and who knows why. Maybe it is because we are social creatures and there is some social value in being able to hear, at least, the beat of someone else’s drum. Or maybe it’s an outgrowth of one of those other traits that help us order and arrange and communicate.

But maybe joy just has its own reasons. Maybe joy is its own reason.

Alice finds a song where I never thought to look for one. (And she shall have music wherever she goes).

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