Literati! I commend Susan Brittain for entering our courtyard once again, bringing in one of the favorite colors of every writer. Aren’t we all a bit blue beneath the surface?
by Susan Brittain
Ella Fitzgerald embraced the Blues, her notes ﬂowed, powerful, rich and seductive.
My Blues were unchanging and ﬂat.
Picasso had his “Blue” period, mine was immeasurable.
The Blues by age seven, sang me a song of the open road. “Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more.” A blue ﬂashing light at midnight told me different.
Billie Holiday at age ﬁfteen wailed the Blues, I knew all the songs by ﬁve.
Duke Ellington played, “Take the ‘A’ train.” My Blues pleaded, “Take the death train.”
Joni Mitchell sang “Blue” and became famous, I sang “Blue” and became invisible.
My Blues seeped into every cell of my body, sang its mournful tune, piece by piece.“Broken promises, friends getting you down, dead end jobs. Hey brother everyone gets the Blues!”
It stole my hopes, my dreams, my life. My Blues pounded its chorus line, “Don’t work, don’t strive, I’ve got your back. Have I ever let you down?”
The Blues blasted, “It’s hip to be pitiful, pathetic, past caring!”
At two in the morning it shook me awake and howled “This is all you get.” Then quietly whispered as I sank to my knees, in darkened rooms,”Now you’re on board.”
The Blues shrieked when I walked into my therapist’s; sat outside chain smoking. Waiting.
Singing that sad tempo, “You’ve got the mis-ﬁt Blues.”
The Blues became my addiction, my love, my heart, my soul.
The Blues jammed a farewell tune, “Get on board,” as I stepped onto a quickly descending elevator to the emotional basement of hell. Going down was easy, I knew I wanted the basement. Faster, faster, faster, the Blues pounded, wailed, suffocated, numbed.
I stepped off, as the Elevator cable snapped and crashed through the basement ﬂoor to the gates of hell.