Not a lot of words today. I am writing other things and there is only so much energy left afterwards to go into the blog.
On September 17th, 2001, David Letterman was the first of the late night shows to return to the air waves after September 11th.
Tori Amos traveled by car (airlines were still down) from Florida to perform that night. She did a cover of Tom Waits' "Time".
You may think I am a crazy fanatic over Tori and perhaps that is true. But we look to performers to capture, to mirror back at us, emotions we are feeling, or emotions we have felt. Ones that we weren't quite capable of or equipped to name at the time we felt them. Experiences that we feel only intuitively. Good writing does the same thing. It says:look. It names all the ineffable moments of human experience that we might be too deeply entrenched in to name ourselves.
Tori does this. If you have seen her live, you have seen it for yourself. Any performer will tell you crowds have energies. The collective energy of all the people there that night. Tori harnesses that energy. She uses it, she names it. The woman downright wields it like a sword. She opens up a space for us to experience things that, until then, were only gnawing around the edges, visible only out of the far peripheries. Here, she did it after September 11th. The hardest spot to hold in your soul is a tender one. We feel tenderness and immediately try to push it away. Reacting in anger or throwing up defenses to make ourselves hard again. Tori held that tender spot open. The place of sadness, of sorrow. The place that needs time to heal. The place where hope is asking if it's too soon to nudge back in.
Well. To me she did, anyway.