Look at this picture.
In the foreground, playing SOMEONE WHO'LL WATCH OVER ME, is the brilliant young Welsh harpist Catrin Meek.
In the background, my mother, Monica Unwin, recovering well from an emergency operation.
The scene is an Intensive Care Unit in St George's Hospital, Tooting.
The ward was full of people, many quite elderly, recovering from serious operations. Scared, uncomfortable, bashed and bruised. And, of course, the usual hard-pressed, kind-hearted and brilliantly down-to-earth NHS staff.
But just for a few minutes the sound of Catrin's harp had an amazingly calming, therapeutic effect on all of us: patients and nurses, visitors and doctors. And I found myself thinking about my mum: born Monica Cohn in Hamburg in August 1933, she's had an extraordinary life in so many ways. And here, with brilliant medical staff sorting her out, and the miraculous power of music, it felt just for a second as if the world was actually getting better, that society did have a future, and that these dark times we find ourselves in are as temporary as the much more ghastly dark times she escaped as a child.
I was probably just intoxicated by the sound of that Welsh harp. But looking around I could see that it affected us all.
Thanks Catrin Meek. Music matters.