It has been one thing after another here. The baby’s burn ordeal, another emergency room trip for a kid with a spider bite, the plumbing apocalypse, expensive car repairs. Oh yeah, and teenagers, of whom I have three if you count the eleventeen year old. Four if you count the twenty year old.
How I handle all this, when I do handle it, besides a daily walk in the woods, is by breathing deeply, stretching much, and listening to soothing music for the drive to and from work.
These days I do not listen to blues or jazz or rock. I listen mostly to Russian Orthodox choral music. Or at least the sweet parts, with all the drama edited. I do this because I own several CDs from the Sacred Treasures albums:
I also have been listening to Nick Drake.
I wouldn’t say that I ever get sick of Nick Drake, but I do get sated from time to time. I will set his music aside for six months or a year or so and then come back to it. I really think his best work is of lasting value, that in the end he will be seen as the final flowering of the English romantic temperament.
I have been listening to Bryter Layter and Five Leaves Left. I can’t find Pink Moon, which everyone but me finds too dark. Well, ‘Black Dog’ is a raw wound of a song, but the rest of the album is beautiful. And spiritual and soothing.
This one song, from Five Leaves, is a constant:
A walk in the woods, calming, sometimes melancholy music, deep breathing, stretching, the rolling Ohio countryside. It’s kept me mostly sane, so far.