Let It Go
I loved Disney’s Frozen at the cinema – there were so many uplifting moments, and (apart from the film makers’ weird decision to kill the main characters parents so that we can like them more) it completely delighted me. The big song Let It Go prickled all the hairs up on my neck and arms. I’m not sure that it’s a particularly brilliant song in its own right purely because I can get all messed up over very sentimental moments in films – usually the ones where a parent loses a child, and even though I know I’m being cruelly manipulated by the film it still gets me. Even more effective is anything bad or wonderful happening to a pet. Man, I’ll be choked.
I’m not deeply connected to music – I enjoy music, mainly as a background to showering, cycling and working. There are pieces of music that do stab me right through the heart. During counselling I always used the superb Portishead album Dummy to get my head into being ready to go and slash and burn my feelings, and to consider them afterwards. I find their sound deeply beautiful. There’s a tortured quality to Beth Gibbons’ vocals and the trip-hop and every part of every track burrows into my soul and shakes the detritus it finds. I suppose it sounds like I feel. There’s also Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata which, when it’s not also reminding me of Earthworm Jim, gets to poke me in the eye.
You Play Me Like A Tambourine
It’s a strange sensation being affected by music. I realise many people are much more deeply affected, and more subtly and by a greater range of music. I still find it surprising. I find it disturbing actually. Maybe that’s because I don’t cry. I’ve got to be really really pushed to get tears out. Even during most of my counselling I didn’t cry. I didn’t cry at my uncle’s funeral, nor have I at any time since he went missing. That should be odd I think. It’s not for want of feeling sad. I suppose what I’m wondering is “what does crying mean?” In a sort of related way, I read recently that cats only miaow at humans; they don’t miaow at each other. So are tears a way of telling other people that we’re upset..? But then people wouldn’t cry on their own. Unless they wanted to.
Alright, the actual question is “why don’t I cry?” Now it’s probably not because I’m really hard and manly. Those things are patently absurd. I can’t credit the idea that it’s because I’m not sad some of the time, or depressed enough to cry. Have I erected some barrier in my tear ducts? Or is there still a part of me that is broken, manifesting as a dishonesty between my mind and body? Perhaps it’s something I can’t know. It’s easy to think that I understand what I think or feel. In fact, I think I know what I think and feel. I’ve found repeatedly that this is just guesswork, and that there’s none of the cliched ring of truth to an idea. Sure, an idea is more plausible and more credible than another, but having found that I’ve completely crushed down memories and feelings effectively in the past… it makes me more than a little suspicious about my own ability to figure out why, or even what I’m feeling.
Music Takes Me Over
Maybe this is the heart of it – I’m stuck mediating between myself and myself. Music, or some specific aspects of a song or track get to slice straight through all that meta-mumbling. That would explain why I’ve been playing Let It Go on repeat, attempting to sing along but getting so utterly choked up that I can’t even manage that simplest of activities. No tears though, just a vast rushing sensation that shakes my organs. What. The. Fuck.
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