Bliss and the Working Artist

The first words that passed through my mind when asked how my life as an artist-musician had given me bliss were, “the Agony and the Ecstasy”. I thought about it for a few days, and then came to the conclusion that bliss was the Holy Grail of creativity. Of course, there are varying degrees, different shades of bliss; the feeling that comes with taking on a difficult piece, slowly dissecting and rebuilding it until you are it’s master, commanding it to your soul, to your fingers or whatever your canvas…that’s definitely a kind of bliss, that fluidity between you and your art. There’s the bliss that comes from pure artistic spontaneity, prefaced by the ability, after years of hard work and practice, to deftly steer …

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The Jazz Concert-by Kirsten Nash — FICTION

The cedar shakes on the sides of our house were faded and worn, blackened by rain and mildewed with neglect. While the summer sun kissed the rest of the world, it came to rest on our house with a slight sense of distaste. Usually. This morning was different. This morning the sun would dance proudly on our dingy rooftop, tossing its’ bright orange smile over the coastal rain forest to introduce the rest of the day. And a very special day it was. This day there would be a concert, a jazz concert and I was up by five in the morning to make sure it didn’t slip by without me. I was six years old. I loved jazz. When the sun finally licked the …

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Young, Gifted and Black-A Tribute to “the Goddess”

Many years ago, when I was in my very early twenties, I left Vancouver Island to tour the backwoods of Western Canada with Elektraglyde, a group that invented itself out of the then Malaspina College Jazz program we were enrolled in at the end of 1983, which then morphed into “DV8” as members came and went. We were going to be rock stars, that much we were sure of, and although the incredible energy I was carrying around loved the release that “rocking” gave it every night, my heart was never really in it…which I guess is part of why we didn’t get to that goalpost. I was raised spending a great deal of time with my grandmother in the first few years, in California, …

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It’s All About Perspective…

I was thinking this morning about a conversation I had with a friend last night about personal responsibility for the choices you make, how they affect your destiny and how your ability to use perspective to…well…to put things into a perspective that can get you a view to help you make sense out of the pitfalls, the missteps and that feeling that someone or something has done you an injustice along the way. Of course, sometimes injustices happen, but it’s how you deal with them that makes the difference in all aspects of a person’s life. The last couple of books I read were “Pale Fire” by Vladimir Nabokov and then “Hunger” by Knut Hamsun. Both had themes of paranoia, the wanting so badly of …

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A Feather and a Scale

This morning I woke up, full of piss and vinegar as the saying goes, having just had the best sleep in months, after a particularly nasty run of insomnia, lasting a couple of weeks this time. I’ve never been a great sleeper…it takes a lot to knock this “Eveready bunny” out; when the world turns off, the quiet jumps to life like a massive canvas to dream on and that’s often when my best creativity gets to work, that and in the very early morning. After getting the boy off to school at 7:15 and all the madness that that usually entails, I raced to my guitar, craving those strings so much after a weekend away without them. I’ve been working on the new tunes …

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To a friend…

Just got on the train from Bath to London, Paddington Station, once again watching the patchwork of green and golden hills flying by, interspersed with brick walled train stations, each with their own unique character, industrial lots and a hodgepodge of hedge and grass walled hills thrown in. Dotted along the countryside are centuries old farmhouses, power poles and in the distance a church steeple or castle rook draws my gaze when I break from typing to muse on the past couple of weeks in Somerset. We stayed in a lovely converted barn just off of Dark Lane, near Witham Friary, names that can’t help but send my writer’s imagination off on creative tangents every time they pass through my mind. Why two weeks in …

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“Shiner: On Being Grateful”

A couple of nights ago, while leaving the bathroom in our vacation rental house in the lovely English countryside, my eyebrow came into a rather unfortunate contact with an “invisible” glass shower wall edge, resulting the following morning in a palette of angry purples and reds showing up on my swollen left eyelid, it’s pots of colour slowly blending and edging under my eye throughout the next day. I had spent about half an hour icing it after the initial bump and frequently for the next couple of days, hoping that would be enough to avoid said discolourations. However when I showed my friends back home a picture of my eye, I knew by their shocked reactions that there was nothing much to do but …

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Scissors

Scissors —- by Kirsten Nash ——— Fiction It was morning, late morning. At least I think it was morning. The sun was shining in through slat-blinded windows, radiating down from midpoint in the sky. Bright, but not too warm, so late morning it would have been. Yes. When I was a little girl, I liked to spirit the scissors from the ledge of my grandmother’s sewing machine table. Withdrawing into myself and the wall beyond Granny’s pulsing feet in the space under that grinding machine, I would open and close those scissors, one little hand on each steely grip, marveling at the sound they made in transition. Open. Close. Open. Close. And I would smile to myself, a small smile at this weight of power …

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“Those Voices”

When the lights go down there’s no one else around she steps out in the silence like she was dancing on a cloud Those who love her stay others go away guess that’s what keeps a girl remembering who she was when the skies were not so undecided when the stars bowed to the sun when a soul, so strong, could be divided they’d come…she’d hear those voices singing Somewhere in the cool night breeze the world stood still while she believed that anything can happen in a dream But the truth is that miracles are seldom what they seem Dancing on as the floor fell from beneath her feet she gazed down the street at passers by reaching out her hand she tried to …

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Katie and Me

Katie and Me Fiction-by Kirsten Nash Katie and me were sitting in the field and we were smoking. We were smoking grass, and not the kind of grass that you could brag about behind the backstop at school, but the kind of grass that you rolled in the paper insides of cigarette package foil. You needed a Bic lighter to run the flame under the tinfoil part until it kissed the paper goodbye. When the paper was lifted from the glue, we curled the hay up in it, because that’s what the grass really was…shredded hay, and we licked, twisted and snapped at the edges of the paper until we had a cigarette. We were desperate for any vestige of sophistication, and so we took …

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