I recently discovered the wonderful music of Emilíana Torrini. Her sound and voice are similar to that of Björk, another great singer-songwriter from Iceland, but just a bit less ‘over the top’. If Björk was the music of my early twenties, than Torrini has taken that place in my late thirties. I enjoy all of her music and can listen to it for days on end. One song especially caught my attention. The lyrics are a bit difficult to understand, but that leaves plenty of room for anyone’s own interpretation. It talks about another in-between in which life happens: the space between pleasure and pain.

Between the pleasure and the pain
Wishing your life away
No more sinister than sane
Briefing your life away
Between the flicker and the flame
No one can explain
Baby blue is born again

{Baby Blue, from the album Love in the Time of Science}

I have wondered about this space. Does pleasure not often involve pain? Can I really enjoy something without getting hurt? Or without hurting others? The desire for pleasure is perhaps most painful. To stay in that space between desire and pleasure means to waste your life away – it gets you nowhere. The flicker never becomes a flame and gives birth to a Baby Blue sadness.

I do sometimes feel that sadness and am happy to have it expressed for me in a song.

{Listen to Baby Blue on Spotify or YouTube}

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