Friday, February 3, 2012

Days of Love...and Lack Thereof, Day 9


No list of romance is quite complete without a little Joni Mitchell. I was going to offer a short clip of myself doing a Joni medley…nothing too jazzy, just the hits...when it was pointed out to me that Random House had actually published her complete poems and lyrics and singing wouldn’t be necessary.  My first thought was, well actually when you have pipes like mine, singing is necessary. I can’t not sing. Those of you who are also blessed with the gift know what I mean.

Joni Mitchell is the greatest songwriter of her generation. What? Are you kidding me? What about Dylan, what about Lennon/McCartney? What about Randy “Short People” Newman? Well to that I say; second, third and fourth.

You want a little romance, a little sex, and a little sadness? "Blue." It’s all in there. Its Mitchell’s most personal, most accessible, and most heartbreaking. You want more, pick up Joni Mitchell: The Complete Poems and Lyrics. Call me; we can sit on the phone and cry.

Link to a great interview with Morrissey and Joni

(I have a signed print of her self portrait hanging in my living room by the way.)


Oh Precious.  It's so hard to be you.  

What's an (anti) Valentine's Day list of books without Push by Sapphire, the basis for the award-winning movie Precious?  Precious is morbidly obese.  Precious is illiterate.  Precious is pregnant with her second child and the father of both children happens to be Precious's father too.  Precious's mother is pretty much the embodiment of evil.  Precious's first child was born with Down Syndrome.  Still, amid the misery, there remains a glimmer of hope for this down-and-out inner city girl who's never had a break in her life.  After being thrown out of her school for being pregnant, she's enrolled in a special school and discovers a world of friends, books, and a teacher who cares about her.  She learns to read and she learns to write her story.  And then she finds out that her rapist father gave her AIDS too.
What I'm neglecting to mention here, though, is that Push is beautifully written, and though the story is bleak, it is ultimately a story of survival and hope.  Of love.  Of strength.  I liked the movie too.

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