tremble clef

Monday, June 19, 2006

Ane Brun, "Temporary Dive" (2005)

"I fell down in that hole again/I am a lump of jelly, I am a dead fish/I look up at the blue sky/And I know it's just a temporary dive."

In this sparse, chilly, and beautiful song -- think Suzanne Vega in her "Cracking" or "Small Blue Thing" moments -- Norwegian folkster Ane Brun sings of the "holes" that we fall into. Despite the arctic bleakness of the melody, the lyric speaks with a voice of hope: such holes, she tells us with faith, are merely "temporary dives." Somewhat worringly, it's not the first time she has fallen: "again." If, on the one hand, the repeated nature of these setbacks gives the lie to her certainty (if she is falling habitually, is each fall as much "temporary" as they are part of a serial failure?), it paradoxically also provides the proof to that faith (since she must have had the experience of getting out, again and again).

Faith and blue skies only go so far, though. The holes, they are everywhere. "And even though I read maps to avoid them, they change locations everyday/And somehow, all of my traces, they vanish." Still, one carries on, because the alternatives are untenable. "But shall one stay put? Shall one stay low? Shall one not go? Just to avoid this hole?"


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