a few years ago, a dear friend gifted me with a poem for my birthday. not art supplies, not quirky jewelry, not anything expected—instead, she collaged words into an illustration of friendship and joy. although i rarely see her, i untuck this poem occasionally from my desk. i replay the words to remind myself that words matter. love matters. encouragement matters.

today, in the midst of this pandemic, i’ll read this poem before i fall asleep, for words can give us hope.

i don’t have a poem for you, but i do have a list of songs. whenever i listen to the lyrics of these artists, i feel a little more cheerful. i hope that you will too.

  1. Coffee by beabadoobee
  2. Everybody Gets a Kitten by Jeremy Messersmith
  3. We’re Going to Be Friends by The White Stripes
  4. Best Part by Daniel Caesar featuring H.E.R.
  5. Stay High by Brittany Howard
  6. Library Magic by The Head and the Heart
  7. As by Stevie Wonder
  8. 65th & Ingleside by Chance the Rapper
  9. September by Earth, Wind & Fire
  10. Good as Hell by Lizzo
portrait of beabadoobee, 2020
watercolor painting
9’’ x 12’’