I probably shouldn't admit it, but in spite of my principled derision for "reality TV," I do have a soft spot for the dance ones--whether they're celebrities or regular folks, I admire and envy the ability to express so much in so few words. From their faces to their postures to the routines that've been choreographed for them, those folks know how to convey such emotion--unfettered joy when they're in their elements during solos, ecstasy when they know they've nailed a brilliant routine, heartbreaking sorrow when the routine's dramatic arc calls for it, even rage--it radiates. It's quite energizing to watch, almost makes me want to get up and dance myself--and I can guarantee the results would be nowhere near as pretty. What a gift they have.
Musicians, also, make me envious. Real musicians, when you see or listen to them in their elements, can both with and without words, convey energy and sorrow and love--passion, I guess. And when you listen to singer-songwriters--it's intensified. Listen to early Jewel--her voice practically cracks with emotion in places, to the point where only the coldest hearts wouldn't break. Or in one of the live recordings of Chuck Ragan, one of my favorite musicians, you can hear the smile in his voice as he feeds off of the music and the fans. (His love songs, also, oh man. They make me melt. His wife is surely a lucky woman.) Even some of the more produced, mainstream music has something in it--a catchy beat, an infectious rhythm, something that makes the day just that much better from having listened to it, something that puts a hum on your lips or the urge to just belt it out.
Dance, music, all forms of art--wordless expressions of the same passion. Writing and words are their own form of expression, and I won't deny that when I'm in my element, when the words practically trip over each other in their race to get to the keyboard, my face is probably as joyous as the dancers I admire, my fingers swift (though not necessarily as graceful), my body taut with so much pent up energy as I try to get it all down. It's more solitary, though, and I rarely see the audience for whom I am performing. And it doesn't have quite the same flair.
I'll keep writing, though, as much for myself as for any recognition. Words are my passion, and, with work and practice, one of my strengths. Sometimes, though, I wish I could just let go, and in the words of Chuck Ragan, "dance like nobody's watching, oh, and sing like nobody cares."
Now playing: Chuck Ragan - Do You Pray