Just say yes.
To all the impossible,
beautiful questions of love.
Just say yes.
To all the impossible,
beautiful questions of love.
the broken glass of your soul
and I will lead you to the moonlight
and show you the kiss
that already sits upon your forehead,
to soothe you.
On the fourth day of Christmas my soul took me back to the river.
The feeling was the same, though.
The feeling of the river washing all the sharp bits out of me.
Making me soft again.
Just like when it’s me and only me in the world.
Today, the river became me.
And I became the river.
And I now know why I was drawn back to this calm and sleepy place.
It was because I had something to learn.
I had to learn to recognise the feeling that takes hold of me when the river bubbles and the wind blows warm on my skin.
I had to give it a name.
It’s name is ‘peace’.
And I’ve come back to the river so that I might share this peace with you.
Ps. Go find a river. Listen to it. Feel it. Life is too short to let the rivers of this beautiful life pass us by.
Song Writing. It’s the mash-up of my two great loves: music and writing. In fact, to be truly romantic about it, I really must confess that songwriting is also a mash-up of my heart and my soul.
I’ve written about my love of music before but the fact of the matter is— I’ve not written about it enough, and shame on me.
Because music is life.
It’s one of the most powerful universal tools we have available to us, and it should be celebrated with all the pom poms held high. Or, at least, I think it should be celebrated, and I dearly hope you’ll agree.
I know I’ve been banging on about that word lately: humanity, but I’ve come to think that it’s the sharing of our most human moments that brings meaning to these lives of ours. And here’s where music comes into it. Music lifts us, doesn’t it, it connects us? It’s our chance to link broken hearts and say, ‘You too? Doesn’t matter. We’ve got this.’
Song Writing—as with many of the creative arts disciplines— is cathartic. For me, sitting in front of that lovely little electric piano of mine, putting my inner world to music… it’s like writing a journal. It’s therapy. And it is the only energy I’ve ever felt that so closely resembles the feeling of ‘home’.
But ‘my baby’ (yes, that’s what I named my electric piano, lol) is getting old. What happens when she finally says, ‘No. I will not play for you, today, Brooke. I will not play for you ever again.’ Gosh. I can’t even think about it.
So, I’ve decided to write all the heartbreak out of me before it happens, turn my impending pain into a heartache that others can relate to: the demise of a great love. So! Let my therapy be yours. Let’s do this broken heart together, shall we?
I know that I can live without you
But do I want to try?
My everything is breaking
And you’re the reason why.
I took your song for granted
I made you play my life
Now every minute’s burning
With every twist of the knife
But I know life will go on
And to me, you’ll just become…
My forgotten love song.
(I have posted a video of me playing this song on youtube for you to have a listen to, just for a bit of something different, a bit of an interactive blog post of sorts! Please, feel free to check it out!)
We are like two dots on a musical theatre map of the world. And every time I fall into a moment where it’s just him and me, and all the musical love hearts…I just can’t help but feel changed.
Allow me to explain.
For so many of my girl hours, I lay like a starfish on my Nan and Pop’s shagpile carpet, blissing out under giant headphones that came to feel more like home to me than the daggy relic they really were. Even after twenty or so years, I can feel the softness of the black leather on my ears (and isn’t that so completely amazing?)
Anyway. The girl. The music. I listened to whatever C.D I could find behind the glass doors of that triple decker sound system. It was like I’d come to crave music, as though every day it called to me, promised me that sunshiny feeling that only music can bring. And of course, I said: Yes. Let’s do this.
Every time I laid myself down in front of that sound system it seemed like the universe was whispering to me, like it was answering all the questions my young girl heart had not yet thought to ask of it. And actually, when music was happening to me there was no need to ask anything. In fact, there was no need to even think.
So, I didn’t think. I just listened and I felt.
One album in particular stirred up my inner butterflies, scattering them off to every corner of the room and back again, without fail. That album was: The original 1985 London Cast recording of Les Miserable. To this day, that album—and that show— takes my breath away.
And now we return to the reason for this post. The man. The voice. The moment that speeds up my butterflies and connects me to another human in a way that is so profound it has me shaking my head in wonderment whenever I think of it.
Because the thing is, this. There is a voice on that album—the voice of a man, who has such a minor part in the show I don’t even know how I found him. I don’t know his name, he doesn’t know mine. I don’t know his smile, he doesn’t know mine. All I know is that for two bars of the song ‘Red and Black’, a man sings. And I close my eyes. And I hold my breath.
I mean, it’s really quite amazing, don’t you think? There is a man out there—a singer and actor, whose identity remains a mystery to me—who will never know that there is a girl in this world who melts inside every single time she hears his voice.
Isn’t-that-epic? Isn’t that the stuff that makes hairs stand on end?
Life, huh. It really is all about the human connection.
Even the connections we don’t know exist.
Give me a rose to colour your glasses with.
Not just any rose.
A pink one.
Painted with the darling of the happiest day.
Doesn’t a pink world feel lovely?
So rosy and sweet and soft.
Like a kiss upon the nose.
Like a hand upon a cheek.
If everyone in the world wore the glasses of love.
Glasses of rose.
How bright and lovely the days would be.
How bright and lovely the world would be.
May there be a rose for anger.
A rose for pain.
A rose for every minute the world needs more bright.
Because darling is the world that’s kissed by glasses of rose.
And darling are the people who wear them.
Moon River, wider than a mile,
I’m crossing you in style some day.
Old dream maker, you heart breaker,
Wherever you’re going,
I’m going your way.
Two drifters, off to see the world.
There’s such a lot of world to see.
We’re after the same rainbow’s end,
Waiting ’round the bend,
My huckleberry friend,
Moon River and me.
Sigh. xx Brooke
The darling moon
Fell in love
With the Sun?
Would two lights shine from the black?
Would day-time drift
the lovers into the open
Where they would shine
A single ray
on a hill by the sea.
Never too bright, never
a smudge of char on the
The darling Sun
Fell in love
Mister darling brown eyes is not the darling of this post.
He is not my husband. He is not my Son. He is not even someone I love or have ever loved.
He is where all this started—this Darling Blog of May, and so must his story be told.
Now. Where was I? Ah, yes. Mister darling brown eyes.
And that fateful night, so many years ago…
It was the end of a very fruitful twelve weeks of acting class and a bunch of us—serious actors in the making— spilled out of the classroom for the final time. We were huddled against the Melbourne cold, stomping along the grey of it all, searching for a place to warm our fingers, a place to hold us while goodbye sank into our aching bones.
So. To the pub it was, then.
We were a mixed bunch. Some of us bright-eyed and fresh-faced (me, nineteen then), others weathered and creased—courtesy, no doubt, of years of face pulling under hot, stage lighting.
Then there was him. Mister darling brown eyes. And mister darling brown eyes…well. He was all the lollypops and rainbows. He was leather jacket and jeans. He was hair like ribbons of dark chocolate fudge.
Eyes so deep they saw right into the guts of whoever they chose. And right now, thanks to the two of us being shoulder to shoulder, those brown eyes chose me.
Mister darling brown eyes. The cosy little corner. The euphoric moment mister darling brown eyes took my quivering hands and declared his undying love for me.
(Cough. No. That’s not what happened.)
In actual fact, mister darling brown eyes gushed about his girlfriend— who was adorable, apparently—and I nodded, smiled and talked about my family, the weather, ice-cream, fluffy ducks. It was, of course, only a matter of time before the topic of conversation turned to something…serious.
‘Are you fan?’ he said.
‘Not so much,’ I said.
And all the crickets sang. And all the angels wept.
‘Never mind,’ said mister darling brown eyes. ‘I can fix that. I’ll recite you a sonnet.’
He went on to explain that Shakespeare is best heard, not read. Shakespeare is rhythm; Shakespeare is dreamy, lilting, song. Mister darling brown eyes lowered his face and smiled, dared me not to be moved by this sonnet of his, dared me not to be changed.
I nodded. (Okay. I may have tilted my head and sighed a little, I can’t be certain.)
‘Go on,’ I whispered. And I leaned back in my seat and proceeded to fall in love with love.
Not with mister darling brown eyes, no.
With Shakespeare, sonnet number 18, to be exact.
So, no. Mister darling brown eyes never did become my husband (which is lucky because I needed that title to give to my gorgeous hubby, Dave.)
Mister darling brown eyes was a gift to me because, without him, I may never have heard about those rough winds that shook Shakespeare’s darling buds of May.
And this, my Darling Blog of May, would be nothing but thirty-one days of blank pages.
Now, where would the darling be in that?
The aching quiet.
You’d know it, I’m sure.
The moment something could have been said but wasn’t. The moment silence was filled with a smile, a giggle, a tear.
That’s what I think the aching quiet is.
An ache of the highest happy.
An ache of the deepest sad.
I’ve met the aching quiet many times in my life.
It’s the glance between would-be lovers in a crowded room; The bashful smiles that live with them for days and weeks and months.
It’s Dad, at the game, when his little girl socks the ball a mile; It’s the face in left-field, who never saw that coming.
It’s the woman who discovers the burger guy’s name and number on her chip bag; It’s how high he flips the patty when she sees it there and smiles.
If words are what life sounds like… the aching quiet must be how life feels.
The stuff of life that reaches the very bones of us, the yarn that weaves us together and makes us all the same.
The aching quiet, I think, is the pauses between the words. The deeper meaning of what we say.
It might even be a gooey caramel surprise for some. (Uhem, me.)
I really do love the aching quiet.