I’ve spent the last thirty minutes trying to find perfect Joni Mitchell song lyrics to share to give an example of her brilliance and why I’ve been sucked, officially, into a fresh Joni Period.
Like Jupiter orbiting the sun, like the awarding of various golf and hockey trophies, The Joni Period comes around every X number of years, then goes away again. The Joni Period affects the tides. It surely impacts the weather in some ozone-y way. You know you’re in a Joni Period if you’re a thirty-six-year-old woman who writes poems in her spare time and are struck suddenly with the desire to listen to Court & Spark twice through while you do paperwork at your dining room table. You don’t listen to Court & Spark by accident. You’re in a Joni Period.
This means is that you will sing along to “Raised On Robbery” at the top of your lungs while vacuuming your condo until “Down To You” comes on and you have to turn off the vacuum and just stand in the center of the room and do some lame swaying and attempt to harmonize. You will think about your girlfriends over the course of your life so far and how Joni was one of them even though you’ve never met her and never will. You will feel like a character in an Erica Jong novel.
When I was in high school, a piano player my family knew up on Washington Island gave me a copy of Blue. If there is one job I have in this life, it ought to be to make sure every young lady I meet gets a copy of Blue. The pacing, the melodies, Joni’s it’ll-grow-on-you voice, the experience put to notes; the album is a flawless specimen of a grown woman’s brain on life. That piece of art was crucial to my development as a person. I know every inch of that album and most of her other ones.
The Joni Period will last a few weeks. Drink lots of water. Go for a walk amongst trees. Then go back to hip-hop or you will be totally disoriented and need to take some long road trip by yourself and wear white cotton dresses and maybe buy a dog and be deeply satisfied.