if we knew what life was worth

You feel death in your own ways, you deal with it, or you avoid it until it makes you sick. No mistake death will have her way with you. i am accepting this more with each memorial service, each ridiculous looking coffin. (i recall a few years ago, a man i had loved intensely died in a car wreck. When i walked into the church, i looked at the box. Hideous, i thought, there is no way he would fit inside such a small box!) Sometimes when i talk to people now, i imagine their box, the flowers, the angry people, the sad people, and the people who came for the food…every wedding/birthday/funeral it’s the same…(i learned that from six feet under)

This last one set my teeth on edge in a strange way. i couldn’t even stand around talking shit with people. i came home driven by the empty promises i had made to share my music with the world. Ernst and i had a long talk when the music was “finished” i told him that i had no intention of selling the record. That the point of the experience for me, the reward, was making the music. He felt this was odd, but that suited me, and i did fuck all about it. i can do fuck all no longer. That stupid looking coffin set me off.

Provoked by death, i took this MacBook into my music room. Literally popped it open on top of the electric piano, clicked on an effect, and pressed record. i hold the dried flowers and feathers from my wedding up to the camera, the dog pads in, breathes heavily, and clacks away. i just start playing whatever is under my fingers, and “something in the way” comes out. (Here i must say my heartfelt thanks to Steve for making it so fun, and easy to use this machine as an extension of my creativity – Love)

Later i took that moment (warts and all), put it in Garage Band, somehow? took out a very loud CLACK (one of the kids and a j board in the background), added some sort of effect that i “played” on the computer. Exported those into my iTunes, and uploaded to my YouTube channel. (*gulp, can you tell i’m not exactly computer literate or internet savvy?)

A day later, amid the kind words from my friends about the feelings and memories that came flooding back when they watched the video, i couldn’t stop thinking about giving my music away.

My daughter and i made a shrine on my piano out of busted stuff that i have been casually collecting for a couple years. Lighters. This was a thing for me, and two of those lighters once belonged to whoever Ernst stole them from before they finished up in my collection – spent. The little silver elephant i found in a junk store. The rolls of film from my first wedding. My grandfathers watch. My ukulele and microphone. A metal pentagram my ex husband made for me when we were both 18. A dried rose from my grandmothers garden. A cup of tea. A collection of triggers, each one an explosion of feelings, thoughts, people, places, times, and faces. The trees.

Took some digital pictures with my hTc Desire (Vignette photo App), used iMovie to make a little photo journal,  set it to the closing track on Perspicacity (the name of my cd) called just a girl. Darcy (my daughter) did all the computer stuff, because she is very good at it. i uploaded it to YouTube, and shared the link by the marvel of Twitter and Facebook with a few friends. One of whom has inspired me to create a video a month for the next 12 months to celebrate, mourn, and ultimately give my music away. Watch this space:

http://www.youtube.com/user/Ms77Nicole?feature=mhee

May there be music in your heart, and love in your ears x

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Shooting Star

Not the blog post i was planning, but, i was reminded today that there is anticipation for one. i walked away from that conversation, returned a phone call i had missed, and a massive train smashed into my world. Here it is.

It feels like the “reveal’ in Snatch. When Turkish figures out that Mickey has bet on himself, and that there is a car full of angry Irish justice waiting for Brick Top. Right at the moment when the shot goes off the camera pushes in and the image freezes on the faces of Mickey, Turkish and Tommy. Mickey is calm, and expectant (that was me in my last blog post), Turkish and Tommy have their faces contorted by shock and surprise (me today). Today i was told the fire eater is dead. i know i am not alone nursing this pain in my chest. There are others all over my country, and in far away places who have the same hurt. in my heart he has spread himself thin as a whisp of cloud and he holds us each as gently in death as he did in life.

i met Ernst at a newyearsbirthday party that went on for four glorious days in Eshowe. He was naked most of the time. He played with fire, his kisses tasted of paraffin. i didn’t love him then. The next time i saw him he had shaved his hair off, as broke as he was, he brought a get well card and gift for my daughter who had just had her appendix removed. i loved him them, and have ever since.

The last time i saw him he photographed me crying and called me brave.  Tonight i cry over the words i will never get to say (i don’t feel so brave).

He loved these words, i use them here without permission, and with humble thanks to Leonard Cohen.

I heard of a man who says words so beautifully

that if he only speaks their name women give themselves to him.

If I am dumb beside your body

while silence blossoms

like tumours on our lips.

It is because I hear a man

climb the stairs

and clear his throat

Outside our door.

Fly friend fly! Goodbye x

Love always

Nicole

If you’re a facebooker please go and look at this very special man’s photos https://www.facebook.com/ernst.bekker?sk=photos

and read his blog http://thatotherdewd.blogspot.com/

and for the afrikaans http://rammetjie.blogspot.com/