why don't we trust time?- a day at vancouver folk fest

why don’’t we trust time?

i had a beautiful day today. one of my nearest and dearest and i, loaded 4 kids into her van this morning and headed down a serpentine highway, cut into the cliff crowned coastline, to the vancouver folk festival for the day. an overcast day, (which to be honest isn’t the worst idea when you’re about to spend 9-12 hours outside), where clouds caressed green-capped grey cliffs on our drive, opened to sunshine. which is good. because although our april and may were as hot and gorgeous as the peak of summer, the last couple months in lower bc have been fickle, and moody, and more reminiscent of fall than summer. so yay! we got a dose of summer in a consciously chosen moment to create a dose of summer!

for context, the vancouver folk fest was part of my life for over 18 years. a time and space every summer where one could guarantee crossing paths with folks you loved but never got to, in the day to day of busyness that we call this post-modern world. a time and space where musicians, language crafters, storytellers shared their wares, their scars, their heartbreak, their hope. a time and space where a massive group, a collective of humans, stopped for long enough to listen, to let seeds plant in minds and hearts. to let smiles in, and to watch watch watch humanity play out all around you in a giant green, willow kissed park, along a bay backed by mountains. suffice to say, it can be so many many things. and there’s nothing like a massive seeding for a dose of inspiration.

but to ramble less, and get to the point more…

why the title of this piece? revisiting the folk fest this year held a reunion quality to it, while at the same time shone laser light into how time passes. there were so many many people playing this year who contributed to quite large parts of my story, of how i came to be here, a little more me each day. a group of friends and lovers who had all braided their stories together somehow without knowing the length of the yarn. new bands made from new configurations of old bands. poets truly, in sonics and words. dissonant voices that were not so afraid to share their gifts that they didn’t. courageous folks-musicians. for many, there is nothing so resonant with their soul as sharing their lives through this medium. but it doesn’t make a difference really. because, while there is natural talent, there is no way around needing to practice to learn, to master. and that always takes time and guts and compromise no matter where you find it. and patient-musicians. i learned this on the road with many of them on a variety of occasions. there is so much waiting. i guess now i could call it being, but who am i kidding-waiting. waiting to get to wherever you are driving or flying to, waiting to sound check, waiting to play, waiting to get payed, waiting to get back to whatever random bed you were sleeping in that night, waiting to see those you might miss, or to get back to the simple tasks of living in a home, watering plants, cooking a meal instead of eating food prepared by others. i learned a lot of respect for those who choose to make their livelihood through playing music. and years ago it caused me to recognize that i had surrounded myself with musicians in relationships, producing shows, tour managing, merch chick-ing- and,perhaps, i wanted to play. and so i did. i picked up a guitar and sucked for so long, caused myself pain, worked it like i’d had to work learning how to surf, and eventually gained enough competency to get out all this energy that is nikki through song. ended up writing over 120. in many ways, because of a bunch of the folks who were present there today on so many stages.

and today, 10-15 years later, with babies,  losses, mergings, evolutions and so many, many stories, i got a chance to peer through time. and it made me wonder, with the complete perfection of everything always being exactly as it is, why we don’t trust time more, or at all really? there are so few constants in the world. (i could even hear in my own head there-well nikki, time isn’t constant). but actually, in it’s binary form, it is. the linearity of time is a constant. and the circularity of time is a constant too. while it does not stretch the same at any given time for any given person, we all do know, from experience, that time does accelerate or decelerate based on our experience of space. it’s this notion that’s the constant here. and so while we look to the forever of relationships as a mast to hold up our sails, or to money, who’s literal value alters day to day, or to ego, which is mostly a summation of our experiences, which are certainly not constant-and we try to create our compass points from these mutable references, we actually not only do not trust time, we often very much fear it. we feel governed by it. we reference our lack of it regularly in todays western societies. but it’s actually there. like a father who will always have your back, and your front, who watches over you and sees you through whatever you need at the speed at which you need it. and in writing this i am realizing the answer, or at least part of it, to my own question.

in our culture we may degrade the mother(the earth), but we do not trust the father. this is metaphoric loves. and i will only address the masculine here. that is what i am talking about. while we hold no respect for the feminine-space creating and holding, intuition, creativity, the invisible, (the ocean) and do for the masculine energies in this northern western world- the energies of production, action, doing, external reference points, release, (the boat)- we actually do not trust the masculine. we, man or woman, have learned not to trust the masculine. because as it has been sculpted and uncallibrated in it’s balance with an unhealed feminine in our modern world, the male inside each of us has taken over, had bullied our intuition, our trust, our ability to just sit and be, our capacity to create, our capacity to create life (look at fertility rates) into, in some cases, disappearing all together. i am not talking about men and women in any way. i am talking male and female, masculine and feminine energetics that hold polarity and form, that create balance, that hold shape, that make life. and as we have all become aware of the tyrant that lives inside us, and have settled with living with him, we have turned our hearts away, shut them down, and let them die. we have continued to live by the tyrant’s wishes for fear of our own safety and security, letting our soul die in the process. at some point, instead of having space and time co-exist in balance, we threw space to the wayside, and threw all our money on time.

but we don’t trust it. perhaps, it is not just healing the feminine that is required, which is so much of what my personal work has been this last decade. perhaps, it is as much learning to forgive and subsequently trust the masculine. to balance it again with all the fecund power, the creative force, the wild and untameable, dark and hidden, changing and morphing that is the feminine, the female, the mother, the woman, the ocean.

and so, an invitation-let out the ocean that is your female inside you. release her from the tyranny of production, or value, or worth. let your brushes fly on canvass like swords, sing to yourself and anyone who will listen, wail and cry. create, listen, hold space, grow gardens in your yards, on your porches, in the soul of yourself and in the hearts of your friends, families and those you love and most importantly FEEL!!!!!!!! and maybe, maybe, through our own individual work, we can slow down time in this here space we find ourselves in, and learn to trust, respect and revere both the beautiful male and female inside us.

i thank you all my sweet and talented loves. i thank you friends who i got to spend some time and space with today. i thank you for the ways you have made me more myself. i thank you for the love i feel inside, in all its shapes and sizes, for each and every one of you. time-it’s such a cool thing;)