Thursday, August 21, 2008


Coldplay is one of my favorite bands.
they have been touted as "one of the best bands of the 21st century," and I hate to be so plebian, but I truly like their music. and their lyrics. I place them in the same category as I do Sting: what I call "thinking man's music."
as this is all so terribly personal and subjective, I expect most all of you to feel differently. which is great. and if you'd like to stop reading right now, feel free. because I'm going to write about chris martin and his band for a bit.

coldplay's newest album features the song viva la vida, which could be taken as a rather sad discourse on leadership ~ or perhaps just arrogance ~ set to a bright, catchy tune. I can't help but sing it, and bum-bum-bum-bum-BUM along to it whether it's playing or not. and there is a part when the band oh-oh-oh's behind chris' voice, and this has created a vision for me: I see the band in the studio, recording this. at the appropriate time, they all lean slightly forward, into their microphones, and elongate their chins as they stretch their mouths into the oh's, and I feel their ecstasy. they are doing what they love, and they are great at it. they are at the top of their game, and they are creating something millions of people hear, love, and find themselves connecting with. what more can we ask from our career, our calling, our place in the world?

"The time I feel most alive is when we're playing. It's the only time that my head makes any sense." this is what chris has to say about his experience, and I just want to curl up inside those words and wear them. you know about my back-up singer fantasy: when I sing I can feel what he describes. (except it's not the only time my head makes sense.) when I write, or when I'm soaring and swooping down the hill after a climb, his words pinpoint my experience precisely. I am alive, brilliantly alive, I am connected, and it's okay for every cell, iota and inch of me to be me.

and back to the "thinking man's music," my favorite line in viva la vida is, "be my mirror, my sword, my shield." this line ran through my head this morning as I was riding, maybe because it was so dark I couldn't see a thing. perhaps I thought a mirror, a sword, a shield, a something might help me find the road!
I love this line. every time I hear it I think about couples, about partnership. this is what we want from a partner, or at least what I believe most of us want. my mirror: love reflects back to us our strengths, our gifts, our beauty....who would not want this? my sword: protect me, help me fight my way through the difficulties out there, make it easier for me. my shield: defend me, show the world what I'm all about, represent and champion me.
this is what came to me in the dark this morning, while the crickets chirped, unknown creatures scampered and scattered in the shrubs just feet from my right shoulder, and the stars watched over me:
visions of mirrors, swords, shields, ecstasy, completeness.

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