Tag Archives: Early Music

2021 Meeting the Moment #14

On this Easter Sunday morning the air is still enough to hear the waves caressing the coastline in even time, the tidal rhythm, a comforting sound. There is a rising tide as the ice cap of desecrations is melting. The patriarchal panic has all the symptoms at scale of any indviduals experience of a panic attack. There is the heightened vigilance for danger where reporters of renown suffering with this panic say things like “emotional demand” for “norms of respect and justice”, the response from eminant academic and co-facilitator of the Uluru Statement, Dr Davis tweet go to the heart of the political economy.

The feeling of dread and danger also showing up in this tale, and the nations top financial paper went after the female journalist who broke story that has the nation resetting its trajectory towards justice in workplaces, and safety for women went belly up when Samantha Maiden was attacked. A sign that the thorn is in the paw and the lion is in pain. Before too long the ongoing truth telling oother women leaders calling out mis-steps and poor judgements, they are labelled as going to far and gaslit. Doing your job as a journalist is a gift, in a world where fake news and constant fact checks are required to get to truths. We need more of this to burst bubbles of all kinds.

On this Easter day I think back to my modest activism in the Catholic Church around inclusive language, to the days of providing advice to an Archbishop who once told me, that he liked working with women because they did the hard work and were finishers, they didn’t let go til the job was done, nor hide from the pain it was causing them. At the time I was very annoyed he wasn’t going further, although I could see he was definitely taking himself to the edges of possibilities. The greatest gift of those times for me was learning about the ‘hermeneutic of suspicion” , to look for what was not there in the text, but was hidden in the seams, the shadows and by what was missing. This technique continues to serve me well and while I am no theologian or historian, I can see that in these days of the rising tide, a tsunami is coming. I can read between the lines that there are many more stories to be told, many more voices to be heard, much more pain to surface. There will be a crash of waves at high tide when the moon is full and when the moon is new. Sister Moon wouldn’t have it any other way.

I am looking to the heavens on a regular basis for inspiration and support. I feel saturated by the grief in the air and I know the tears, anger, frustration are rocket fuel, propelling us out of the old gravitional pull to new orbits. And this poem to remind me and perhaps others of the value of taking a little rest, while the soul catches up. thank you to Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin for this poem, a perfect companion for this day.

Turas d’Anam

Often times 
the step backward 
lets the soul catch up. 
So that all our happy 
hindsights harmonize 
and wisdom builds. 

Share your luck. 
Be miserly only 
with misfortune.
In each seismic 
shudder we learn 
to trust the ground 
again, humble again, 
knowingly broken,
unrepentantly wounded, 
proud to bare pain. 

Laying claim to 
the Joy factory 
of your body. 

No more tariffs, or sanctions. 
Wage cuts and glass ceilings. 
Conventions, expenses paid, nor 
lanyards or company position. 

Often times, 
this way you can live 
in ways other simply 
will not, develop sides 
of you others simply 
would not. 

So feel the rhythm 
beyond the beat. 
Begin with a break, 
and let your soul 
catch up.

Easter Eve, Songlines, Sellicks Hill.

2021 Meeting the moment #6

February has started unusually cool, I even had a jumper on yesterday. The way temperature impacts on mood is something to watch. Wanting to cosy up as the air becomes a little more crisp is an invitation to intimacy. I notice conversations take a little step deeper and still stay in the comfort and comforting zone. Over this past week there have been conversations in a range of media that wouldn’t have happened if the usual stressful heat of February was pounding and pulsating. We have even had heavy rains, and gentle showers, a phenomena a long way from the smell of smoke on the horizon and the threat of bushfire that we usually have swirling around at this time of the year. Sure we have had a bushfire event only a week or so ago, but it fades right away as the earth and sky acts cool.

The conversations have come in print through trading of texts and on various messaging platforms, they have come between lines on a page, in real time on the voices mediated by telephony, and of course face to face. They have included devasting news from a dear friend, witnessing of an extraordinary life being celebrated extinguished by cancer leaving teens motherless, joyful voices singing the traditional Happy Birthday to a daughter and sibling, solidarity messages between sojourners, evidence and claims of capability in a fancy upstairs office block to triumvirate determining worth of a trio seeking to join them on in a quest for systemic change, a series of exchanges of ideas tumbling over hurdles and leapfrogging through the air to get to new places, recipes written to invoke and create a time past … and these conversations are not all of the ones I have had in this time. Each conversation is encoded with the principes of barter at its core and the stock price of the trade slides around according to the intimacy. The most expensive moments, are like perfume, where just a drop of the essence can carry you further into relationship.

Early conversations, are like early music, where the words, the inflexions, the choice of media to communicate, are still forming, the notes a little dependent on stylised scores. And the old conversations can take on a similiar vibe, but that is because the players are more skillful and know how to employ these same elements to communicate effectively with precision that lands every note in the right place at the right time. In this cool season the counterpoint is supported by the temperature and brings the conversations its own musicality between the contributors who know when to take a rest, take a turn to expect the rhythm to arrive with ease. Timing seems to be a big part of the this, allowing spaces where the emptiness gives depth and then little words that skip in a staccato form provide urgency to move the conversation along when that might be needed as well. In the cool of these days and nights I am noticing that there is more familiarity and less urgency and a pace more akin to walking than running or standing still. There is definitely movement in these more mellow times.

No doubt there are still going to be more days ahead when the temperature will stifle conversations and bring that mix of speed and stillness. Speed to get through the heat and the stillness of not being to do much except flop onto a couch under a fan. The conversations change too and there are more moments of clipped speech, undertones of exhaustion and frustration, talk of fire and a future where the whole planet is suffocating.

With the cool comes space to think and plan and conjure, it is respite for the soul. I have been contemplating how to bring more cool to my life to be a little more like Goldilocks and get the temperature ‘just right’ to do what is needed to meet everyday moments.

Photo by Marc Zimmer on Unsplash