Issue #238 / June 2023

I must confess I got to know you just today. One of my classmates said this website inspired her, and I got interested. We are at an art school in Chelsea. I was reading some questions – coronation, father’s death, tattoo, inspiration and love. I couldn’t help but start crying. I don’t know why. It’s 6 pm in the library. It’s sunny, and I am clearly sober. I wonder why this page makes me so emotional. I think it’s really beautiful what you are doing. It’s such a humane act. I just wanted to tell you this.


Dear Ryu,

This is my first File for a few weeks as Ive been busy in the studio working on a new album. I’ve spent the last few days reading more than a thousand questions — a vast, sustaining river of need and joy and grief. I had become, to put it mildly, overwhelmed and so I asked my wife, Susie, how I should approach it. Lightly and with a smile’, she said.

Later that night, when I reopened the Files, I landed on your letter straight away, Ryu. Something resonated. As I read what you had written, I thought of the deep, mysterious reserves of feeling we all carry around with us that are suddenly and inexplicably triggered by small recognitions of our common struggles. I thought of the intricate sorrows that are threaded through our lives, binding us all together, the shared tears that wash clear our eyes to better see the many tasks set in front of us. And I remembered what Susie had said – that we should go lightly among them. If we are consumed by these things then we become of little value to ourselves, each other, or the world. This is something I must learn and relearn constantly.

Anyway, I am very pleased to meet you. To introduce myself, my name is Nick Cave and I am a singer who has somehow ended up with a website where I answer peoples questions. I have no idea how I arrived at this place, nor where this thing is going, but here I am waving to you across town, lightly and with a smile’.

Love, Nick


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