you live, you learn

Alanis Morissette performed in Oakland tonite, revisiting Jagged Little Pill on it’s 10 year anniversary. Aaron managed to snag front row center seats, allowing me to view her every facial expression, every emotion while i vividly flashed back.

In 1995, my cousin handed me a copy of Jagged Little Pill, telling me that i would like it. It hadn’t been released yet; he had a review copy. I put it in the tape player and it got stuck, where i left it on repeat play for over six months. So many things were connected with that album. The beauty pageant. My neck. The party. But more than anything, there was Clark. Tears rolled down my face as Alanis sang “Perfect” and i flashed back to learning of his death, running out the house in hysteria and jumping in my car, speeding down Oregon Pike until i spun out in the ice, crying Alanis lyrics intermittently combined with screaming, car in the middle of the intersection. I saw him there, remembered his voice and our last conversation, remembered the night when he hid in the dark waiting form me to come home from work, grabbed my hand to place a sleeping River in my palm.

We all had our reasons to be there
We all had a thing or two to learn
We all needed something to cling to
So we did

It’s amazing to realize that we carry our pasts with us always and the little triggers quickly collapse all temporal distance. Within the sadness, i felt so much joy listening to her, realizing that i too am ten years older and her words were in the past for both of us.

You live you learn
You love you learn
You cry you learn
You lose you learn
You bleed you learn
You scream you learn

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3 thoughts on “you live, you learn

  1. Maurice

    Made me think of a passage from Merleau-Ponty: “Others for me exist less in their center, as Kafka said, as in the wake of their lives. Their past rushing behind them and ahead of them seems to snatch them up and carry them along like a thing in the path of a flood. Most of the time people always seem a little further down stream than right in front of you, their past propelling them forward into the future.”

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