Song // This one comes courtesy of Eileen, whose music recommendations win at life. I have Tori Amos days like every other woman, but lately I’ve been relying on music to pump (clap) me up. Anything with strings or emotions is a danger zone when tired…like deciding to show M the Macklemore Same Love video over breakfast. Mistakes (involving weeping into my eggs) were made. This, however…What-Is-Love-head-bob while doing your makeup. Guaranteed.
Book // FINALLY. After recommendations from a zillion trusted sources, this one has been on my to-read list for about six months. And on Sunday, I retreated to the couch with some tea and made it happen (an un-renewable library hold will push you to greatness). My sources were right: it’s funny and fast. Unexpectedly, though, it also has an intense moral center; the title character’s genius and love for her daughter come across far more eloquently than I was anticipating in a “beach read.” Bonus: it’s composed almost entirely of “found” material (emails, police reports, report cards) which appealed to my inner detective. (Nancy Drew birthday parties = separate post)
Quote // What is a poem but a long-ish quote? At Christmas, in addition to the James Baldwin I have not yet read, Mongrel gave me a book of Billy Collins poems. He is the Dumbledore of culture, my brother who cannot order scotch in public. He will not lead you astray, is not capable of doing so. This is the one to catch me first, but I’m trying to read one a day. Can’t really digest more than that at once…I need to sit with them all day or else feel like I’m gorging.Man Listening To Disc
This is not bad –
ambling along 44th Street
with Sonny Rollins for company,
his music flowing through the soft calipers
of these earphones,
as if he were right beside me
on this clear day in March,
the pavement sparkling with sunlight,
pigeons fluttering off the curb,
nodding over a profusion of bread crumbs.
In fact, I would say
my delight at being suffused
with phrases from his saxophone –
some like honey, some like vinegar –
is surpassed only by my gratitude
to Tommy Potter for taking the time
to join us on this breezy afternoon
with his most unwieldy bass
and to the esteemed Arthur Taylor
who is somehow managing to navigate
this crowd with his cumbersome drums.
And I bow deeply to Thelonious Monk
for figuring out a way
to motorize — or whatever — his huge piano
so he could be with us today.
This music is loud yet so confidential.
I cannot help feeling even more
like the center of the universe
than usual as I walk along to a rapid
little version of “The Way You Look Tonight,”
and all I can say to my fellow pedestrians,
to the woman in the white sweater,
the man in the tan raincoat and the heavy glasses,
who mistake themselves for the center of the universe –
all I can say is watch your step,
because the five of us, instruments and all,
are about to angle over
to the south side of the street
and then, in our own tightly knit way,
turn the corner at Sixth Avenue.
And if any of you are curious
about where this aggregation,
this whole battery-powered crew,
is headed, let us just say
that the real center of the universe,
the only true point of view,
is full of hope that he,
the hub of the cosmos
with his hair blown sideways,
will eventually make it all the way downtown.
Look // This week, the look is a scent. Mostly because, if you smell fantastic, the rest of your deportment matters not at all. I’ve collected enough tiny scent vials to outfit an army of pre-teens, and this one is by far my new favorite. I’m bizarrely picky about perfume, and this manages to hit all the high notes: sexy but not musky/sweet but not cloying/fresh without being laundry-esque.
Linking up with Jenna.