...and then there was EVE

Susan Sontag

Episode Summary

There was a time when writers were stars and treated as such. They held rocknroll status like Kanye West and when they said something, even if it was silent it was an event. Sontag made thinking sexy. Charismatic, controversial, flawed and complex; so much about what she saw and how she saw it was emblematic of the twentieth century. Sontag is my personal hero, the kind that you hold on a pedestal from afar, the kind of idol you would be scared to meet in person!

Episode Notes

Contact : andthentherewaseve24@gmail.com, @jeannamusic

Mixed by my son Jasper Jeurissen  : jeurissenjasper@gmail.com, @jasperucci


Episode Transcription

I am a watchful night owl, patient and wise. Keen to minute detail and astute observation. I am insatiably hungry. My head disconnected from my body, I use my vantage point to connect the riches of ancient philosophers to present analog gold miners. There is no way forward without looking back. But most importantly, the only words worth a dime are that I love you deeply. I just wish it didn’t ache so much. 

I find it baffling because I have countless notebooks filled with my thoughts as well as entries of the initials of all the people I have been with but also loved. This is not my first time. So why now ? Why L. ?   I want to take my time with this. I want to understand my desire so that I can consciously dissect the feeling from the thinking. I don’t want to feel my way into this and think my way out of it either. Male/Female, Hetero/Homosexual, Old/Young, Black/White, Form/Content, Ethics/Aesthetics, Consciousness/Sensuousness are not opposites at all, they are simply aspects of one another. I have worked hard to make peace with the constant pull from both directions. I am aware that I can be capable of causing pain and destruction, I sincerely wish it could be different but that is not who I am. Most people are afraid to step out of stereotypes and into a life of experiences. While I’m listening to myself write down these words, I realise how strong this makes me sound. I’m also afraid of a lot of things but right now, at this moment even with a war raging over my head the thing I’m most afraid of, is you...

I wonder if I am worthy ? You are as stripped down of artifice as one can get. Your austerity and living, breathing lack of metaphor are the values and characteristics to which I have sworn my intellectual and philosophical allegiance. With you, there are no hidden meanings. I want to give myself to you the way that  I have given myself to Sarajevo and the people of this country. I am humbled by their courage and I want to be here with them regardless of the danger. I feel the call of moral duty and noble civic action and that is what brings me back here time and time again. This is a defining moment for Europe and for the rest of the world but I seem to be the only westerner who is willing to put my body in the line of fire. I cannot stand idly by while and regarding the pain of others. 

Sarajevo is waiting…we are waiting for help to come. 

Sarajevo is waiting…we are waiting for help to come. 

I am up at dawn wanting to finish writing everything I want to say to you but know I never will. L. in a couple of hours I will be on a plane back to New York and I will run to your door. I will have the smell of fear and gratitude to be alive on me even after a hot shower. It will take some time for me to free myself of the guilt of being one of a few to be able to leave a city that has been forgotten, to a city where the privileged do everything to be noticed by speaking loudly and obnoxiously above each other without the slightest worry that a sniper will shoot them down the second they walk out the door. The contrast of these two realities is jarring, eerie and the worlds silence, deafening.

« Is all the world a stage and life but a dream ? » 

And yet, being so close to death makes one leap to life and life has to be lived. I have to allow myself to feel the truth of love. The abandon. Un-cuffed, arms spread, free of metaphor. This is the most natural of human conditions and yet the most difficult as it requires us to lower the mask. Both daughters of alcoholic mothers, nothing about this will be easy.

There is a lot of me to process and I know that I will never glide through the air the way you do, I cannot defy gravity with your grace but I can be on the ground with my books and cigarettes and desire. And indeed, it is only through the act loving and being in love that the life of the mind can find its full expression.