is often difficult to grasp/accept the fact that humans are mortal and only on earth in their familiar forms for a limited.

Such was my reaction to the news that Aretha Franklin had died. No, not yet.  Aretha had been someone I had appreciated musically for decades.

One of my daughters and I had the pleasure of seeing and hearing Aretha when she performed at the Chicago Theater a few years ago.

Aretha, definitely not a featherweight at the time, had tippy-toed out onto the stage in heels that were too high and obviously uncomfortable.  After a while, she took them off and put them on top of the piano.

Good move, Aretha.  Now everyone could relax and give their undivided attention to and appreciation of Aretha’s outstanding singing.

Most of the biographical coverage of Aretha’s life has included a reference to her song “R-E-S-P-E-C-T”  written  by Otis Redding.

This song had been a hit, and spelling the word in song gave it another dimension.  Aretha’s voice was amazing, and she has shown its versatility when she sang  Puccini’s aria, “Nessum Dorma” when Luciano Pavarotti became ill and was unable to perform.

You go, Aretha.  Her performance was moving and the audience gave her a standing ovation.

It will be a while before I can think of Aretha’s passing without getting a bit teary. Her physical presence will be missed, but thank goodness her voice will be heard “forever and ever.”

Peggy Tarr has been a columnist for the Evanston RoundTable since its founding in 1998. Born in Bruce Springsteen's hometown of Freehold, New Jersey, she graduated from Rutgers University with a degree...