I’m blogging today from my daughter’s computer, sitting in her comfy desk chair and lumbar-wrapped in an ACE bandage, while my grandson is upstairs in bed, fighting what looks like the flu (poor little guy).
He seemed fine yesterday, when we all went out and picked out a bed and mattress for me to buy for my new digs.
Today I’m feeling in between worlds as I mentally begin my re-entry into the world I have to leave. I have set a “move” date of November 13 — an arbitrary date, but I like the number 13 since most people don’t.
But for the moment, I’m enjoying the quiet, the peacefulness, the loving acceptance that suffuses this home of my daughter and son-in-law and grandson. This home that will soon be mine as well.
Before I leave, I will listen again to the video below — a rousing reminder of the freedom to come. Listen to “Les Misbarack.”
That’s been my ear worm for the past several days. The song is from the 1940s stage musical “Finian’s Rainbow.” — How Are Things in Glocca Morra?
When I hear that song, I am back in my little cocoon of a room where my asthma has me ensconced for days on end listening to the radio and playing with my endless supply of movie star paper dolls. The sun is shining through the sparkling window panes, opened just a bit to let in the fresh air. The room is filled with my breath and my music and an otherwise silence that negates any stress. My imagination takes me wherever I want to go, and the music on the radio is my magic carpet.
Even today, as the ear worm circles through my brain, somewhere deep inside me, I retreat into a safe, secluded place, where the sun shines through clear window panes and I am left to conjure a life of peace.
It’s been there all week. I can’t get rid of it, no matter what other music I play.
Famous Blue Raincoat.
It’s haunting me.
As I’m immersed in music, I get this poem from and by Jim Culleny. The Pumpkin Harvesters
In town the café’s coffee buzz
seeps into the street from under the door
as a tender singer moans her song
not as in the old days
(as in rockabilly and rhythm and blues before)
but with power chords
and a fresh monotony
My dad preferred country tunes
and hearing Little Richard first time
stopped where my big-holed 45 spun
and in his best blue-collar voice said,
“You call this shit music?” and I did
as we twirled off each other about then
and went our separate ways awhile
until a fresh dew froze on the pumpkin
in a new late game and the harvesters
off across the field sang both
Coldplay and Hank Williams
as they came.
As we sorted through his CDs, we rediscovered just what an eclectic taste in music in once-husband had. From Willie Nelson to Anrdea Bocelli, with Moody Blues somewhere in the middle.
As for me, Hank Williams and Kitty Wells were my high school idols, which, I know is strange for an urban kid, but I hung around with guys who had a country band.
Gotta get rid of that earworm.
I’ve been thinking about my life’s soundtrack — the songs that have played in the background as I lived through various eras in my life so far. My still new car still has it’s free trial satellite radio connection, and I find that the only station I really listen to is the 1950s one. With each song, my being remembers the feeling of when I heard it played all those decades ago. I don’t necessarily remember events; I remember feelings. That’s the magic of music.
I have discovered that many of the songs from subsequent decades that I still like to listen to are the ones written by Leonard Cohen. Not sung by him, but written — or co-written — by him. They seem to generate the most visceral emotional response.
I’m thinking particularly of the songs on Jennifer Warnes’ Famous Blue Raincoat all-Leonard-Cohen-album, which was a gift from Myrln. Simon and Garfunkel were major players in my 60s and 70s head — poignant and soulful and melancholy: “Cloudy,” “Bookends,” “Patterns,” “America.”
And Don McClean with his “And I Love You So” and “Winterwood” and “Vincent.” Judy Collins singing “Suzanne” and”Hey, That’s No Way to Say Goodbye” and “Sisters of Mercy” ….. — music that took me through bittersweet 70s.
Over the past decade or so, especially those years taking care of my mother, I haven’t been listening to much music. There is no stereo in her rooms, and I spend a great deal of my time there with her, watching television.
Occasionally, in my own space, I listen to Josh Groban. “Vincent,” again.
I’m finally starting to download songs into my MP3 player, but it’s not any new music that I want to listen to. I want to hear the old songs, the ones that bring me to remembering when I had a real life.
It’s hard to stop feeling melancholy, remembering and then recognizing that what’s gone is gone for good.
I play Mary Chapin Carpenter’s album with which blogger friend Dave Rogers kindly gifted me through ITunes. It’s melancholy resonates with mine and fills me. And then the melancholy is gone, at least for now. I can think of something else besides what’s lost.
I can think of something like the elections.
I’ve had mixed feelings about Hillary Clinton for the same reasons that many others do. But I’m slowly becoming more and more convinced that she’s the better democratic candidate.
I was particularly interested in the points made in the Washington Post by Geoff Garin, strategist on the Clinton campaign.
So let me get this straight.
On the one hand, it’s perfectly decent for Obama to argue that only he has the virtue to bring change to Washington and that Clinton lacks the character and the commitment to do so. On the other hand, we are somehow hitting below the belt when we say that Clinton is the candidate best able to withstand the pressures of the presidency and do what’s right for the American people, while leaving the decisions about Obama’s preparedness to the voters.
Who made up those rules? And who would ever think they are fair?
The bottom line is that one campaign really has engaged in a mean-spirited, unfair character attack on the other candidate — but it has been Obama’s campaign, not ours. You would be hard-pressed to find significant analogues from our candidate, our senior campaign officials or our advertising to the direct personal statements that the Obama campaign has made about Clinton.
The problem is that the Obama campaign holds itself to a different standard than the one to which it holds us — and sometimes the media do, too.
There are no saints in politics. But there are those who can get the job of fixing this country done more effectively than others.
I originally supported John Edwards. Hillary Clinton is my next choice.