Right now I’d love to live
like Laurel Canyon Carole King
the beehives and false lashes
replaced by wilder tresses
not locked in the Brill Building
for other folks to sing
not having to wipe the baby’s ass
with pen in one hand
diaper in the other
writing a song for an old friend
or a brother:
Just like Laurel Canyon Carole King
A Natural Woman
happy and free
feelin’ Beautiful –
Some Kinda Wonderful
in my own skin.
© Experimentsinfiction 2021, All Rights Reserved
Image credit: By Capitol Records – Original publicity photo, PD-US,
About this poem
If they asked me, I could write a book about how much I love Carole King. When she started out as a songwriter in the 1950s, and was married and pregnant by age 17, but this did not stop her prolific output as a songwriter. I saw a tv interview in which she talked about changing diapers (nappies) with one hand and penning music with the other.
All through the Sixties, working with husband Gerry Goffin, she wrote songs which became hits for other people. Tunes so many people know and love: Will you still love me tomorrow? The Locomotion, and Up on the Roof to name but a few.
Carole split from Gerry Goffin in 1968 and went to live in Laurel Canyon L.A. and this is where she literally found her own voice, writing and recording the album Tapestry in 1971, which would become a multi-platinum selling record and revered as one of the greatest albums of all time.
I have referenced several of her songs in this poem:
- ‘For an old friend or a brother’ is a line from the song ‘Goodbye don’t mean I’m gone’ from the 1972 album Rhymes and Reasons.
- ‘Natural Woman’ and ‘Beautiful’ are famous songs from Tapestry.
- ‘Some Kind of Wonderful’ is from the album Music (1971)
And here she is singing ‘Goodbye don’t mean I’m gone:’