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.
8 thoughts on “Susan Brittain crashes through the surface from blue to definitely red state!”
Powerful. Emotional. Susan has a way of releasing her bitter past and turning it into beautiful pieces of written art.
Her “blues” were but the seed that has grown into a beautiful rainbow of inspiration.
Beautifully written Susan, as always!
(C-town loves you!)
Powerful emotions – human, real. Bravo for putting pen to paper, friend!
Such a vibrant piece of work!
What a beautiful cascade of associations and imagery. This is elegant and plaintive and heart stirring and a very acute picture of lifelong depression..
“Some say the blues are for blacks. I know I’m pretty white. But maybe, the blues are exclusive to blues. You ever think of that? I know its black and blue some night.” — Rives. Great piece. Raw and full of emotion.
A blues’ scale is only five notes, but it ranges from a resolvable complaint to the loss of hope in the keys of purgatory to hell. This blues run is a mood elevator that snaps and drops emotions to the base of the skull.
The Blues are for everyone – mean and dirty. Or they can be but an expression of the emotions that float through our being, but only for moments. It just depends on how much attachment you place on the Blues. Its at the ‘crossroads baby, the crossroads’.
I maybe on the other side of the fence here, but I felt an underlying pulse of hope running throughout this creative moaning. There is a quick to your step, it is in the writing, and tells me this is yesterday’s news as far as you are concerned. I would be willing to bet you don’t even smoke anymore?