Picking Up Broken Pieces – Newest YouTube Video

Picking Up Broken Pieces

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This is the newest YouTube video with music for my upcoming book, “Inside The Forbidden Outside. The poem runs across the bottom. You can also read it right here.

It is my plan to put out a new video every two weeks, hoping that by the end of the year all of the pieces to my project will be completed and ready for editing. It has taken me three years to get to this point, having no idea what I was doing when I started. What a learning process. It has taken more determination and dedication than I thought I had.

For example – this video took 63 video clips I had to upload to my computer, after I found the ones I wanted, and then upload them into the software program I am using to make the video. Each video took 7-20 minutes to upload to the program. The clips then have to be arranged in the order I wanted and tested and retested. I’m still learning the word editing that has to be inserted into the different frames. It took about 20 hours to make this video. During that time I can’t work on the book or write blog posts. I can’t work on my music websites or keep up social media, so everything moves slowly as I circle through as much as I can in one day.

I don’t take any days off. There are no Monday through Friday workweeks. There is no paycheck for my efforts. When I wake, I get a cup of coffee that gets cold and I begin working. This project – for Jamie – and I don’t kid myself, it is for me, to show what I can do after more than a few years of making music.

If you don’t have deep determination to accomplish something, you may begin, but you won’t finish. You’ll put it aside after you convince yourself you can’t do it. If you can’t motivate yourself, or if you listen to people tell you that you can’t do – you won’t, and you will blame other reasons for why you failed. But blaming yourself probably won’t be one of those reasons.

But to do this I need your help – your support. I have a mailing list for my newsletter ITFO News. But I also now have a mailing list for my music and videos. You can easily subscribe to at at my website: Sonni Quick. When I come out with something new I’ll let you know. Listen and share if you like it. That is the best support you can give me. Subscribe to my YouTube channel. People look at that number when they go to YouTube and determine if someone is worth listening to. Growing those early numbers as quickly as possible is important.

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My Name is Jamie – wordpress blog on Jamie’s life and info on prisons and the criminal injustice system

Sonni Quicks Piano Improv –  Additional YouTube videos of the music soundtrack for Inside The Forbidden Outside. New videos are released as they are made. When you subscribe and share, other people have the opportunity to learn about the book being written which will help Jamie start a life when he is released. He needs your help. If you have read his story on the blog you understand why. Thank you.

My personal music website  – sonniquick.net

Skunk Radio – Indie radio out of London. My personal page

Soundcloud – all of my music can be found here plus music I have personally liked from other musicians. You can also play my album “Stories without Words”

Jamie Life in Prison at Facebook . . .Blog posts and news about injustice in the worldS

Improv Piano music of Sonni Quick – at Facebook . . . music news and other musicians

Twitter – My Name is Jamie

Picking up Broken Pieces – Poetry

Broken glass

Picking up Broken Pieces

Pieces falling one by one
Scattered at my feet
I bend and try to pick them up
but I couldn’t reach beneath
the bottom of the lowest stair
where broken dreams did sleep

I see flashes of my deepest dreams
Too late to make them true
Time has passed I can’t go back
I don’t know what to do
Pieces crumble into dust
when connecting even two

They cut my fingers if I try
Blood seeps between my fingers
When I try to hold my broken dreams
the scent of memories linger
The pain, the loss of years gone by
The echo of no answer.

 

This poem is on the newest music video I’m making. It should be ready in a couple days – hopefully. The rewriting of my book “Inside The Forbidden Outside”  has taken quite awhile since I began writing.  Because I write piano music I began recording a soundtrack for each chapter. A month ago I started making videos and adding poetry, so it is a four part project. What began as a book on Jamie Cummings life in prison has become much more. Time intensive it certainly is.

I decided to publish the poetry so you can read it at one time. In the video you’ll see it one line at a time throughout the video. The poetry has the same title as the music, which is also the title of a chapter in the book, which is in the 2nd draft stage.

I have posted a few chapters I have written but I haven’t posted this one. You will find them on many other blog. If you do a search on the title of the book it will even pull up the first draft chapters.

The title of this poem correlates to the time during Jamie’s prison term when he finally has to mentally deal with, and accept, loss. In the beginning he had an unrealistic hope that if he was good he could get out soon. The 17 year sentence hadn’t really sunk in. I think that is most likely common thing with most people if it is their first time in prison. How did anyone deal with the ride to prison, go through the red tape – alone – and face a prison for the first time with men you had to present the right face to. Taking care of yourself now had a new meaning,

Losing a woman he loved, losing the role of being a father, quickly losing the support of his family, who no longer came to see him enough to pretend it counted. Three to five years between visits – maybe. He lost any type of meaningful communication with anyone in his family, and he never had any friends who mattered.  No one answered his letters. On rare occasions his grandmother wrote and told him some things that happened, long after they happened, but they weren’t the type of letters where he could write back and forth about what he was going through.

He came to the point of realizing he had to accept it and let it go. He knew that to keep waiting for someone to write, and making excuses for them in his head, had to stop. He didn’t want to think about why they were too busy to answer even one of his letters.  He had to make it okay or it ripped him apart. He didn’t want to think he didn’t matter. It was painful and he was lonely, but he had to get it right in his head.

People in the free world could never imagine life in a small cell completely a-l-o-n-e without anyone who gave a damn. Many of the men he met inside had no one who cared. And no one who helped get the small necessities that made their existence tolerable.

I got angry. I was angry at his mother for saying she didn’t write to Jamie because it hurt HER too much. 12 years, and it hurt HER. Damn, it makes me angry when I write these words. She said them to me and she also said them to Jamie during one of her rare visits. He lost everything and everyone and it hurt to think he was never a priority in his family’s lives. So he had to put it away. He couldn’t change it. It was these feelings of loss he couldn’t change that prompted this poem, “Picking up Broken Pieces”. The music is sad and melancholy. For me it tells the story. You can hear it here.

When I started writing to Jamie in 2007 how could I stop? How could I justify abandoning him, too. It was a commitment. I looked forward too his letters. We’ve sent over 800 by now. It is a diary of his life. It needed too become a book.

He is the father of one of my grandsons. That made him family. Okay, my daughter moved on. She wanted to leave him behind. She had to. 17 years when you are only in your mid twenties is too much separation – unless you had no choice, like Jamie. She later resented me for writing to him. She was trying to forget him and I wouldn’t let her. I’m sorry if it was painful for her, but I want going to stop writing fot that reason.  If he wasn’t able to have anyone in his life then there was no way I would abandon him, too. He needed me. Our letters were deep and thought provoking, making him think beyond what had happened and realize why it happened. If you spend a lot of time in a solitary cell and don’t have the right things to think about, you go nuts. Many do. It was important to me to teach him ideas about life and how to change direction. Him being okay and being through this was important to me. Out of 17 years has had only 5 to go. Only 5. A long time still, but time is passing.

Several years ago I started his blog: My Name is Jamie.  Many off the posts are portions off his letters. Then came the idea of writing his story. I did a tremendous amount of research and reading to understand our prison system. I also started the monthly  newsletter – ITFO News. (I’d publish more often but I don’t have the time unless I can get some – free – help from someone who believes I what I do.

This second blog, Watch and Whirl and trying to keep up with social media is all day ( night) project. In my off hours I write and record music.

This is what Jamie has done for me. He gave me a life – a profession that is much enhanced from what it was. We have been there for each other. There is much more to the story. If you haven’t yet, go to the other blog and start with the white pages at the top,

Enjoy, Learn and Understand. Become a penpal with an inmate who would cherish your letters about a life he can’t live behind walls. Most inmates are not what the media portrays.

Sonni

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ITFO News

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If you know an inmate who writes poetry or is an artist or has a story you’d like to tell you can email me at: itfonews@gmail.com

My personal music website  – sonniquick.net

Jamie Life in Prison at Facebook . . .Blog posts and news about injustice in the world

My Name is Jamie. Life in Prison – blog on Jamie’s life and other articles on our prison. Educate yourself to reality, not what mainstream media tells you.

SoundCloud – Picking Up Broken Pieces

I recently put a blog post on my other blog that has a new piano recording in it. I wasn’t going to reblog it, but you can read it here if you want to. Today I only wanted to focus on the music.

My dream from very early childhood was to compose the most beautiful music in the world. A childish dream but never forgotten. I didn’t play well at the age of 7, but I could hear it inside me. I just didn’t know how to get it out. Even as an adult, through years of playing professionally and practicing every day it still wasn’t there yet. I have stacks of songs I wrote and lyrics and piano arrangements but it still wasn’t what I heard inside.

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Then I lost it all. I thought I was done. My piano gathered dust for 12 years. I lost my identity. At least I thought I did. I didn’t know who I was. I had always known, “I was a musician.” I felt I had lost the right to call myself a musician. I felt like a part of me had been amputated and it was a painful blow to my life. 

Then Jamie Cummings entered my life – the man in prison from my other blog. Through years of knowing him, his pain was stronger than mine. Then I nearly died in need of a liver transplant. That pain was like none I’d ever felt before. The recovery was very long and some of the damage done is what it is. Pain and I are good friends. It let’s me know every morning, I didn’t die in my sleep.

But something changed. I needed a way to express the pain. Not what I was feeling about me, but the pain I carried for Jamie – his pain and his loss. No one who should was recognizing his pain. It is a horrible pain when you realize that the people who should have cared – didn’t, and you are left to rot.  Because without any love at all you begin to die inside. People told him, “I don’t write to you or help you because it hurts ME so much that you are in there.”  That doesn’t make any more sense today than it did the first time I heard it. He and I understood our pain.  Even through the hell he lived in he worried more about me than about himself. Where does a friend like that come from?  How could I let him down, no matter what people thought?

I started to play again. I can’t really explain it, but instead of creating music from the outside by developing a cord structure and building a melody around it, I crawled inside the music and let it play itself. My fingers know what to do like a typist knows a keyboard. I knew what I was feeling so I mentally got out of the way and let my fingers express it. I don’t listen while I play. I just play. I hear it in the background like it comes from somewhere else. I record everything I play. I sometimes don’t listen back for days so I can hear it as something new. I can never replay anything because I improvise as I go. After that it is gone.

When I listen to music I recorded 2 years ago and those recorded recently, I can hear the progress and it is getting closer to what is inside. I’m not done yet. Where is it going? I don’t know. The process and progress is exciting. There ARE advantages to aging – experience. The more I immerse myself in the emotion I want to convey, the more that feeling emerges. Yes, there is, technically, an occasional wrong note – but are they really wrong notes?

I enjoy sharing my music with people who want to hear it. I know it may not be everyone’s style. Even listening once means a lot to me. You sharing it from soundcloud or anywhere else puts it out to new people. More people hear it. Leave a comment. Add a like. Stats are the name of the game. Who says a 62 year old woman is too old to keep creating something new?

Put your head back. Close your eyes. What does it make you feel? Play it again. Where does it take you? Can you do that for me?