Hello dear friends

Hello dear friends, I was standing in front of a monument the other day with my family and read of the World War One soldiers, “they gave the supreme gift of themselves”. It was a bright, crisp Massachussettes morning, a day after Dashiell’s birthday, and the immense truth of that ability, that commitment, is still having an impact on me. I am experiencing giving the gift of myself on different levels now, because life has gotten so very challenging for people close to me, and also because I have a child for whom I need to be as present and unselfish as possible. Giving your life is so much different than losing your life. A female writer told me during a dinner at Norman Mailer’s house recently that she wished she didn’t have children because she lost her chance of being an artist, and I have to say I feel I’m gaining the depth to be a bigger artist.

First of all I’m gaining faith. To let someone grow and thrive in their own time and space you have to trust in them, in their divinity, in their purpose. Even and especially if I am nervous about other people influencing him away from himself, I remind my heart that he’s as safe as he can be at the moment, as safe as any of us usually are, and that he has his own creative destiny. It’s an in the moment dialogue I have with myself often because I am the one responsible for his well being, and yet, I don’t want to be over bearing in my concern, I love my freedom, too, and I want him to love his. My favorite thing as a mother is watching him play fifteen or twenty feet away, discovering his world, which is unique from everyone’s, and feeling content to be in the same universe. I’m never conscious of giving to him, and that’s the way I would like it to be with everyone.

But it isn’t, and that is something I’m learning about. These hard times seem to be getting harder for most of us, and neighbors will need each other more, strangers may become buddies, and friends may turn their heads. I read and I listen and I watch and I am dubious about the near future of this country. For me, this is a time in history where the individual needs to risk going against the tide of the times, needs to balk at the group and say what’s heavy on your heart, what’s making your soul shutter. It’s time to give the gift of your self, not in dying, but in expression.

My feelings, my vantage point, are in my new cycle of songs coming out, in my paintings, but I don’t feel right about elaborating on them now, on the internet. Not because I wont take a risk, but because a risk at the wrong time is foolish, and at the right time is brave. On Norman Maler’s desk, in his writing room up in the attic where he worked ten hours a day, was, amoung his research, a paper with a paragraph that could freeze your blood. But what did actually give me chills was the note he hand wrote next to it. No one that night noticed it but me, as they ogled at every materiel detail of his life. I showed it to Gigi and she showed it to the host, who shrugged and said, “I cant believe I’ve been up here so many times and never read that.”

This is what I’m saying, we must stop being blind to the writing on the wall. We, as a people, are going to be faced with losing ourselves, or giving ourselves, and it wont be supreme unless we believe, truly believe, in what we are doing it for. So if you don’t believe in something, start expressing what you do believe in. I can’t wait to share my new work with you.

Sophie B.

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