Broken hearts do heal from soothing sounds of music


There are a few things in the world that are as beautiful as music. What makes it ever so wondrous is in how people connect to different kinds of music and to different aspects of music.

Have you ever seen a jazz lover sitting under a tree with a beer tapping their foot to a tune so beautifully that even the tree leaves start to sway to their rhythm, cats and dogs sit still and close by without the usual racketeering?

I do not find jazz fascinating as a genre but I love watching the people who love it in their happy moments.

I just don't trust people who listen to deep house in the house on a Sunday, the type who need to constantly tap you during a song to say ekwa katara. First of all, that's not what a guitar sounds like, Black Coffee lite.

Second of all, how uncultured must you be to be blazing house music on a Sunday? Have you not heard of Amadodana ase Wesile, who raised you if you reach for Vinny da Vinci instead of Rebecca Malope on a Sunday?

The fact that I am here, stringing words into sentences should tell you what aspect of music I am drawn to - lyrics, words.

This is largely informed by my deep and unyielding obsession with the human experience, what it is versus what it should be and what it could be.

Words are the most basic of our means of communication with each other. Body language can be a means to communicate, but it is susceptible to being misconstrued, the reading thereof depends on people's personal experiences and stored information.

Words convey meaning we all know to be in that particular word. That you can read and follow this column to this point, while you may not know where I am going with it, is because of our shared knowledge of what these words mean.

Words also carry feelings and thoughts and it is through these that I am constantly reminded of just how similar our life experiences are. Things like pain, and heartbreak especially, have a way of making us feel alienated from each other, and from the world. The words of others help us explain our own pain, even if it is just to yourself and no one else.

We go through some really heart-wrenching circumstances and often it can feel that no one understands our woes. But imagine a woman who has been struggling with infertility, and the comfort she gets from a song like Rebecca Malope's O mphe Ngwana.

Sometimes that's all we need, the understanding that it's not a unique experience, that the world did not single you out for that pain.

Three weeks ago my family and I woke up to the biggest nightmare of our lives. I don't know if there are any parts of our hearts left to break. I don't know if I will ever have the strength to put into words the darkness we've been plunged into.

But I was listening to the radio during the week and Miley Cyrus's deep voice reminded me that "nothing breaks like a heart". And it sort of gave me permission to exhale and finally say what I have felt for the past three weeks, that our hearts are broken.

I am sure the journey to heal will be cushioned by many more songs, I will always be incredibly grateful that music exists.

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.