Friday, April 15, 2016

M is for Lucy Maud Montgomery and Joni Mitchell - two rocking Canucks




My theme this year is the ABCEDARIA of Women who have inspired me.

M is for Lucy Maud Montgomery 

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And who might she be? The writer of Anne of Green Gables of course! Anne, who filled my youth with delight. I might still say, unfashionable as it might be to admit, rarely a day has gone by since I read all the Anne books (about ten or so) that I haven't considered some bit witticism or story in them. I never sit down with a church lady without thinking of the doughty Mrs.Rachel Lynde. I never think of the behavior of people who make verbal excuses for their rudeness while continuing their actions that I don't consider Anne's dressing down of a certain grumpy man. I think of her when I hear of local quilting bees, neighborhood improvement, hair dye and belief in faeries. I think of her when I make ice cream, when people talk about silly fashions, and hearing about the days of one room schools (like where my folks and my fella's folks went to school).

I have found out as an adult that things weren't always too rosy for Lucy. She, like Anne, lost her mother as a baby and was raised by grandparents who were more strict than fun. She married a minister who suffered with various mental health problems and she herself suffered from depression. She died, perhaps, of her own hand after struggling for years. (this is in question - there was a suicide note but some family members say it was part of a lost journal) At any rate - she gave and continues to give endless children delight with her stories and an alphabet without her in it would be simply wrong.

Do you have authors whose stories ring in your ears for years and years?

And M is for Joni Mitchell
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Only two women made it into the top ten of Rolling Stone's 100 best all time songwriters and the imitable Ms Mitchell was one of them. Her songs have been luring me into wonder since I first heard Both Sides Now when I was just a skinny ole baby hippy myself.  She has sung me through marriage breakups, loneliness, heartbreak, joy, childbirth, every sort of coming and leaving you can imagine and she still does it. I never see a frozen river that I'm not skating down it with her. I know Richard and Carey and the ladies of the canyon as if they were my best pals. I could drink a case of her and I would still be on my feet, I would still be on my feet. Thanks Joni - you never stopped being entirely you - one of a kind.

5 comments:

Margot Kinberg said...

Oh, I couldn't think of better choices, Jan!! Joni Mitchell - what a creative genius! And Lucy Maude Montgomery - no less so. Beautiful music and good writing - a perfect blend.

Hart Johnson said...

My childhood somehow missed Anne of Green Gables. I mean I have heard of her, obviously, but by the time I had, I was of the belief I was too old. I wish I had caught them somehow. Love Joni Mitchell.

Jan Morrison said...

Thanks you two - they are pretty far apart on the personality scale but nonetheless both fiercely themselves. And Tartlette - one is never too old to read Anne books. Truly. If you want something more Amurican but the same flavour - Girl of the Limberlost and Freckles by Gene Stratton-Porter. Not quite as good but still very good.

Bish Denham said...

Pave paradise, put up a parking lot. I hope her healing is continuing and that she'll recover in full.

lissa said...

who hasn't read the Anne books? though it took me longer to truly appreciate them as I wasn't smittened immediately like other people but Anne and Gilbert and the others kind of grew on you.

anyway, have a lovely day.