love of the purest sort
This week, I visited a very special place. The old home of my most beloved piano teacher, Clemens Leske Senior and his wife, Beryl Kimber. They now live in Sydney, but this home has a place all its own in my heart.
I began lessons with Clemens at the age of 15, when he was well into his 70s. I remember catching the bus to North Adelaide, walking up to this beautiful old house, gold and red leaves along the pathway just as they were this week, and thinking, “What on EARTH are we going to talk about?! How are we EVER going to connect?”
I needn’t have worried because we really didn’t talk in our first lesson. He played, I copied; he played, I listened to beautiful nuances. I learned, in safety and a cocoon of calm wonder.
There are few people in this world I love; not in the romantic relationship sense, and not as family, but genuinely love. I have a handful of friends I really love. I have so many beautiful people I adore, or am fond of, or are so important to me, and I am blessed so many times over to know.
But Clemens Leske Senior is one of the very few people in the world I genuinely love, as a father figure and as a person. How is this possible? We didn’t even have real conversations! But the calmness and love that radiated from him was unmistakeable, and I knew, from the moment I sat down at his beautiful old grand piano, that I was safe in my learning, and valued for exactly who I was.
And THIS love is one I carry through to my own teaching when I walk into the classroom. In the Autumn light, I remembered what it was like to be 15 years old and overflowing completely with hope!