Patti Smith interview with Terry Gross that my-friend-Rachel recommended to me last week on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Rachel knows a lot about Patti Smith...I know very little. Only that she's a poet and her music was a huge deal during the punk revolution of the 70s and 80s, she was part of that generation of Chelsea-Hotel artists, and that she's got this easy no-makeup just-woke-up androgynous manner about her. I'd love to look like that. Give me Tilda Swinton any day over say, Angelina Jolie (though I do heart Angie).
Anyway, Patti is promoting her new book "Just Kids" dedicated to her friend, onetime lover, and soulmate Robert Mapplethorpe whom you may know for his erotic often sado-masochistic style of photography. If you listen to this interview, you can hear two things in Patti's voice: 1)She's cool-calm. If you're like me you'll want to know how you can figure out how to find her and soak in some of it. 2)She fiercely loved and believed in Robert...they fused their passions and hunger and found a purpose for art and life together. She had this to say about how she found peace after the pain of Robert's death in 1989 of complications from AIDS:
The idea that time heals all wounds is not really true. Our wounds aren't really ever healed. We just learn to walk with them. We learn that some days we're gonna feel intense pain all over again and we just have to say 'Ok, I know you. You can come along with me today.' The same way that sometimes we start laughing out in the middle of nowhere remembering something that happened with someone we've lost. You know, life is the best thing we have....and I think it's very important to not be afraid to experience joy in the middle of sorrow.
If you can carve out 46 minutes and 16 seconds to listen to the interview--do it. It'll make you feel good...and we all could use a couple more things to make us feel good, right? As for me, it's already past noon, so I'm off to hunt down coffee, donuts, lavender soap, and brown eyeliner (so much for the "easy no-makeup just-woke-up androgynous" look, eh?).
Photo taken in 1976 by Robert Mapplethorpe