Another Day Lurches Forward!

Oh man. You know you’ve wandered into new waters when you awaken at 3:48am and all you can think about, even though your eyes aren’t even open, is Alison Bechdel’s graphic memoir Fun Home — and it’s accompanying Tony-Award winning Broadway musical, and specifically the song about the keys.

(And by “graphic” here I mean, comic book — in case you aren’t familiar with her work. And it deals with her childhood growing up in a seriously dysfunctional family. And the song about the keys is about the young Alison’s first attraction to a butch dyke.)

I got up to pee and I refused to really become awake yet, although I was reminded about the ladybug from last night, and knowing it was “a sign” — and I was curious now to know: a sign of what?

And the Fun Home thing made me think that the ladybug was a sign that life isn’t simply a linear thread; there is so much more at play, in all the dimensions of a single moment. Or even a segment of life. And that it was a sign to just keep making it into art. Just keep doing that.

And then I went back to sleep and I slept for about 5 more hours. Honestly. The sun was way up when I got up.

After I fed the cats and myself, I went up to my desk and opened the file for Tell My Bones, because I have that meeting with the Director of the play early this afternoon. But you know what? I couldn’t even read past the first few lines.

I know the play — I wrote it. I don’t need to read it again while in this emotional stupor; this feeling like I’m wearing ten tons of emotional armor that is weighing me down unbelievably right now. So the meeting will go better if I just go to the meeting and take notes…

So I focused instead on combing my hair — a thing I realized I hadn’t done since I washed it on Monday (!!). Jesus. And then I put on my makeup so that my eyes look way, way lovelier than my soul feels. And it’s sort of helping pull me into a better place.

You know, I’m also — like everyone — weighed down by the world. The horrible fires, the poor animals, the earthquakes, the missile strikes.

I don’t blog about it because my blog is not about that. But, obviously, I am affected by all of that, too.

But I am drinking my coffee and slowly feeling myself coming out from under the weight of everything, and focusing on art. My own art, I mean. Because, overall, I honestly think it’s okay if all this stuff that perplexes me about my dysfunctional life or makes me feel like vomiting once in awhile is leading to interesting art. For art’s sake. It’s okay. I seriously mean that.

I don’t actually understand what life is — I do know, though, that the quality of being physically alive is only a small part of it. Yet, while we’re physical, we have the incredible opportunity to focus, you know? To bring to clarity whatever it is we choose. We can focus on the bad or the good — or both, and thus broaden what it is we thought we were looking at until it becomes this amazing thing. In my case, a written piece of work of some kind.

I know that’s true about life. The rest of it, I don’t really understand. And I’m at that point where I don’t think I even need to try to understand anymore. Just look for the beauty in the moment and find it and that becomes enough. For me, anyway.

Well, in keeping with the thought that I was only going to take notes at the meeting today, I went in search of the notebook that I have my Helen LaFrance notes in, and I found it and guess what??!! It had a pen clipped to it!! Jesus Christ. How delightfully predictable am I? (Before I found the notebook, I was wondering what I was going to do about a pen, because I’m running low on pens around here, and I was thinking: maybe Kevin will have a spare pen I can borrow… And then, voila! My obsessive behavior re: pens clipped to small notebooks had all the bases covered for me.)

Okay. I gotta scoot. I want to eat something before I head off to the meeting. I hope you’re having a good morning thus far, wherever you are in the world! Thanks for visiting! I leave you with the song about the keys from the Broadway musical version of Fun Home. I love you guys. See ya.

“Ring of Keys”

[ALISON]
You didn’t notice her at first, but I saw her the moment she walked in
She was a delivery woman
She came in with a hand cart full of packages
She was an old-school butch

[SMALL ALISON]
Someone just came in the door
Like no one I ever saw before
I feel…
I feel…

I don’t know where you came from
I wish I did
I feel so dumb
I feel…

Your swagger and your bearing
And the just right clothes you’re wearing
Your short hair and your dungarees
And your lace up boots

And your keys, oh
Your ring of keys

I thought it was s’pposed to be wrong
But you seem okay with being strong
I want…to…
You’re so…

It’s probably conceited to say
But I think we’re alike
in a certain way
I…um…

Your swagger and your bearing
And the just right clothes you’re wearing
Your short hair and your dungarees
And your lace up boots

And your keys, oh
Your ring of keys

Do you feel my heart saying “hi”?
In this whole luncheonette
Why am I the only one who sees you’re beautiful?

No, I mean…

Handsome!

Your swagger and your bearing
And the just right clothes you’re wearing
Your short hair and your dungarees
And your lace up boots

And your keys, oh
Your ring of keys

I know you
I know you
I know you

c – 2015 Jeanine Tesori & Lisa Kron

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