Tuesday, January 25, 2011

"'Cause I want to live inside the world/I want to act like a real girl"

The Song: "Dreams Are Not My Home," Rosanne Cash. Words & music by Rosanne Cash. Track 9 of Black Cadillac, 2006.
When/how acquired: Gift CD, 2006
Listen/watch here.

This CD, a memorial to Rosanne Cash's parents, came out within a month of my own mother's death. Jennifer Lechner gave it to me. I played it pretty much nonstop for about six months, and bought copies for all my siblings. Even now, phrases from it can punch me in the gut.

I've been listening to Rosanne Cash's audiobook reading of her memoir, COMPOSED, and it's been catching me the same way. I'm overwhelmed by the generosity of it, the balance she strikes between a clear-eyed willingness to sit in judgment over her choices and a profound tenderness toward her younger self. She manages to find the universal in her extraordinary life. At the end of this book, I'll probably write her a thank-you note.

Early in the book she writes about that sense of not knowing how to be a girl, in the way that other girls seemed to. It's always been a mystery to me, too. Princess stuff makes me angry; makeup baffles me; years ago I ceded defeat in the battle of my hair, and wear it in a careless way that becomes increasingly inappropriate with age. Even the name of this blog was meant to be ironic, because although I am happy to be a woman, I was never any good at being a girl. Too blunt, too independent, too critical and probably too lazy.

But I still feel a little wistful about it. Jewelry will always look silly on me; I never did learn to walk in really high heels; and even my lifelong search for the perfect handbag has always been about something other than fashion.

It's snowing again. Weather permitting (and it may not), I'm hoping to get to Boston tonight for the launch of Daniel Palmer's first novel, DELIRIOUS. If you're in the area, you should go: Borders downtown, 511 Boylston, at 7:00 p.m. Dan's a client and a friend, and I'm proud of the work he did on DELIRIOUS. Check it out.

1 comment:

Laura Benedict said...

I have been hearing many good things about Cash's book. Glad to have your confirmation.

You know, honey, some of us were just born women, and skipped the girl part. And that's not necessarily a bad thing. I think you're a truly lovely woman inside and out. So there. xo