Saturday, July 26, 2008

Music, Memory, Madness

Past tense: In the 1990s, I read Chris Hedges' daily New York Times dispatches from Yugoslavia while I nursed our newborn boy, my grounded career as a photojournalist silently juxtaposed to Srebrenica's horrific mass graves. I wished I could cover the war in Bosnia, even while I was safe and content on the couch, listening endlessly to Kate Rusby and watching Josef grow.

Present tense: Adm and I are producing Enisa's story of coming to America from Bosnia, distilling her courage and strength into a tight two-minute narrative. Simultaneously, a few days ago, big news of Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic's arrest after living openly for 13 years in Belgrade, disguised as Dr. David, a new age healer. I contacted Enisa for her reactions. She said, in her beautiful Bosnian accent, that the arrest was good news but that it stirred up a thousand bad memories.

While researching music for Enisa's piece, my friend Lucija Hadziselimovic gave me beaucoup leads, she being a veritable idea faucet. Through the winding path of discovery and grief, I found this tonic for my sorrow.

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