I’m listening to River of Orchids, arguably the most perfect piece of music XTC ever crafted. It’s on repeat. I’m singing too quietly for my house to hear, but my eyes are closed as I’m typing this and I’m swaying like the most classic of butterfly catching hippie girl. Pluck, and the strings echo the sound of a drop of water exquisitely caught. Unison, tears, a little thread of hair, two fingers, pluck. It’s something complex simmered down into it’s simplest components. A long haired orchestra, a chorus of flowers. Alchemy, singing into gold. Want to walk into London on my hands one day. The harmony is untouchable, flawless, layered in every direction like the air on windless day in a sunny field full of glory. This is my hindsight soundtrack to everything good in the world. It’s both childish and meaningful, lushly encompassing a world of celebration. Visual paeans flit past my mind when I put this on too long. Winding scenes of incongruous joy.
I put it on because it’s beautiful, because I’m a little bit nervous. Someone interesting is coming over for dinner and a movie. Something cyclical and charming is required, something that reminds me of stand up memories. The mural we had in the basement always disappointed me, it was always a little too dull yellow for my tastes and they never asked me to take part in any way I felt I could respect. I took pictures anyway, when we left, of that wall that I painted topless, smearing white paint with a demoniacal grin. The home-made bars on the windows were covered in gray electrical tape.