The Blues are playing as I write this and serenading my confused, tender heart - bruised and battered from life's journey. I look out at the road ahead and stare down yet another crossroads.
For the last decade I've faced this same crossroads so many times - choosing to leave behind the known path and the approval & understanding of others. Risking the unknown, led only by some crazy, unfaltering desire to follow my own heart's path and seek my own, dear truth. I wish I could say the risks have paid off, but it's been a tortured path filled with loss, heartache, disappointment and the bitter-sweet refrain of my sweet soul sister who is singing, "Cry, Cry, Cry...like a rainy day".
And now before my feet, with life's excruciating timing, is presented the safe, secure path - beckoning me with it's promise of ease, safety and security. I swear life enjoys toying with me this way! No-one would fault me for choosing this safe path - in fact, the crowds are standing there cheering me on, "come on, come back, join us here - we miss you!" Why would I continue torturing myself with an unknown path that doesn't come with any guarantees, that's uncleared, messy and dangerous?
I'm inspired and comforted by others who have stared down these particular crossroads - and chose the "emboldened" way. Like writer Henry Miller, who sought through his work to reestablish the freedom to live without the conventional restraints of civilization. His first two works were denied publication in the U.S. until the early 1960s because of alleged obscenity. Now, I haven't read either of these works, but I can surely relate to someone who has this to share:
“Every day we slaughter our finest impulses. That is why we get a heartache when we read those lines written by the hand of a master and recognize them as our own, as the tender shoots which we stifled because we lacked the faith to believe in our own powers, our own criterion of truth and beauty. Every man, when he gets quiet, when he becomes desperately honest with himself, is capable of uttering profound truths. We all derive from the same source. there is no mystery about the origin of things. We are all part of creation, all kings, all poets, all musicians; we have only to open up, only to discover what is already there.”
― Henry Miller
That's why I love the Blues - that's why I feel it and it moves me in the depths of my soul. The Blues come from a place that acknowledges and understands life's struggles. It takes that pain, the messy guts of life and transforms it. Spills it out as something heartfelt and beautiful. My desire for that heartfelt beauty is what pulls me like a magnet down the unknown path - like an alluring mistress who won't let up, with her promises of dangerous, exciting, passionate love! She'll probably break your heart for sure, but it will be a wild, ecstatic ride along the way and you will have moments, however brief, where you will be King, Poet, Musician, Lover and lose yourself in sweet Freedom.
So, sing me the Blues...Sing me the answer my soul already knows. Fill me up with it from the soles of my feet through the soul of my being. Sing me to my own sweet truth...