“Oh me oh my there’s a light in the sky….” (Steve Hillage, on the album Green)…
I just saw a hell of a great documentary. Made by Susan…Lacy, was it? About Joni Mitchell. Interviewing her, and all those closest to her, through all the different, oh so varied steps in her life / career… Enormously inspiring.
You may be thinking; Goodness gracious, you didn´t discover her genious until today?!
But yes, of course I have known of her, and listened to the occasional song by her.
But not in depth. Not really her poetry either. Didn´t know she was such a revolutionary.
I know my way around the music of the 60s and 70s okay well. Not very well. I was born in 72 after all. But I have always loved the classics, the Beatles, Lennon, Kinks, Stones, Incredible String Band, Syd Barret, Bolan, all the hippy hits, Mamas and the Papas…. many. Many.
But not really Joni. Until tonight.
Just Ice. Governed by greed and lust.
The film made me cry several times tonight. Got to get hold of that film. Doesn´t seem to be on Youtube.
Graham Nash, who lived with her for a while, described how, when she was writing, it was like she was a medium, he couldn´t reach her, she sat right there but she could not hear him, she was not present…
She said her songs take a lot of meditation. And she paints in between the albums; without painting she doesn´t think she could write…
Genderless, classless music… Refusing boundaries. No boxes. Inclusion, not exclusion, as a fellow musician expressed it…
She had a nervous breakdown, “or, as they call it in some cultures, she said; “a shamanic rising”. ” She turned to nature. Fame turned her off.
There´s a whole bunch of albums I need to get hold of. Quickly!
I feel… inspired by her. And a bit sad, in a strange way. To realize that talent can have the size of hers. That old thought comes back to me. The one I have learnt, through hard work, should not steer me or limit me, should be calmed down or talked against. The thought that “why should I write, when someone like her has already done it so well?”
That old fear again. Not being good enough. At least when one can identify it, it has lost most of its power.
I have a manuscript in English that´s been lying in my drawer for years. Unseen. I have a collection of poems in Norwegian, also unseen. Which I was planning to send to a publisher’s, but I haven´t gotten it done yet. Had this plan for over a year. I have a third project, a story about a girl whose mother dies… that story is hard to continue writing…
But okay. To my defense or excuse, I have young children. I don´t get the priviledge of going within for extended time periods, to create, or even focus. I will get there.
That human mind. Endlessly comparing. I know it is silly. So I don´t really take it seriously. But it is how i deal with fear. I give it air, I voice it and listen to it. Accept it, comfort it, then watch it let go of me. Like a child, who gets through something that hurt comforted in its mother´s arms, then lets go and runs off to play again, relieved and happy, one experience wiser. Swiftly moving on to new learnings…
I wrote a poem about this. In my book. I wrote it in 2007.
About How I Deal with Fear
To be allowed passage.
To be faced.
To be taken seriously.
To be reasoned with, talked to,
analyzed, to understand its cause.
To be cried.
To be accepted.
To try and change my inner dialogue.
If unsuccesful, to get help
from NLP or other specialist.
This is the song I knew from before. Masterpiece. As, honestly, it seems, all her work is. Master´s pieces. And the moving between genres, writing such personal, psychological lyrics long before others did… She´s something else. Outstanding. Un comparable.
I guess she received yet another fan tonight, huh. 🙂
I just become so grateful when someone expresses the universal so well. Form and content not just mastered, but invented! The immensely special way that she uses her voice… Yeah. I could go on.
Thank you Joni.
I shall enjoy your work and be inspired by it.
And work on not faling into the pit of fear.
I am good enough too. My work has its place, just like anyone else´s.
Let this be the year where I send my finished stuff to publishers.
And let my story about the girl, keep moving forward.
So to speak.