If you would have asked me a month ago, I would have looked for the answer in a picture book. It seems like a picture book sort of question, doesn’t it?
“Snow came singing a silent song,” writes Lynne Rae Perkins in Snow Music. In this book, winter is quiet after a snow fall, but there is a whole symphony of sounds if you listen for them. Cars, trucks, and animals all sound different in the winter. There’s a beauty in the whispers of snowfall and the loud scrapes of trucks clearing the way. There’s a beauty in the differences.
For the past several weeks, I have had a different answer to the question. I have had Haley Bonar’s new EP Wntr Snds on repeat, and these six songs are spare and intimate in a way that creates just the warmth that we need in a cold, cold Minnesota winter. “Like Ice and Cold” is my personal favorite. In this song, winter sounds like change, like hope. Maybe it isn’t so different from Snow Music.
If you need a little encouragement to see what winter can offer during this sub-zero week, try one of these and listen closely.
Find Snow Music at your local library or indie bookstore. Or get more wintery picture book suggestions here.
I’ve written before on this blog and in this zine of the creative block I experienced upon becoming a mother. People have always said that having children changes you, but I didn’t expect that I would have to fight to keep my identity as a writer just because I had a baby. It used to be easy to put words to paper, and I thought it would always be easy. I’m a different person because I had to decide to keep creating myself as a writer.
One of my favorite local artists, Haley Bonar, spoke of her transition to motherhood in this interview:
“She’s a really amazing baby, and she’s so sweet and smart, and I do everything because of her — including that time I have to myself. I use it very constructively, and I write songs way more than I did before I had a baby — which sounds insane — and I’m so inspired by it, because there’s so much joy and so much pain and so much everything that goes into that first year. Everyone that has a kid goes through that, and it’s not anything new, but you kind of grieve yourself a little bit, and you have to get over that, and you become the most strong and powerful and confident version of yourself, because you are essentially caring for this other person. Yeah, motherhood is amazing.”
I can relate to that. It is pretty amazing, and so is Ms. Bonar’s music. Here is a video of a song from Golder:
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Haley Bonar played at the Walker Art Center instead of Loring Park for Music and Movies in the Park due to weather, which was a shame since by that point in the day, it was quite lovely outside. Nonetheless, Ms. Bonar played a great set. She looked so cute on stage with her baby bump!
And yes, it was my little one who started singing along to “Kid October” and got a laugh from the crowd. :)