My Special Song

Photo by Gabriel Rochette

Here is the thing: I am obsessed with Iceland.

Don’t ask me why. I have never been there. I have no relation. I strongly dislike the climate. That Bjork chic is a little disturbing. And their economy is in the crapper.

…but so what?

It’s Iceland.  It’s magic.

I feel drawn to this place like I have lived there a hundred years. Like I know every frozen nook and glacial mass east of Reykjavik.

I do not believe in reincarnation, but if I did, I’m confident you would have found me toothless and cleaning fish, or milking goats, or something equally unglamorous, in Iceland.

Sometimes, when I am at my worst, when it’s the middle of the night at the bottom of winter and I am scraping the dregs of Depression, one of the only things that calms me down is putting on headphones and listening to a series of Icelandic lullabies.


Does that sound weird? Yeah, I guess it does. But it works for me. It gets me through the night. Some people get through these sorts of nights by reading, some write, some drink…and some people, like me, resort to music. Weird and foreign music, devoid of rhythm and harmony. Noise. Cold white noise. I do not speak Icelandic, so I can’t understand a word of it, but it helps me cope. And for that I am eternally grateful.

Round about a year ago, I heard a preview of a song that sounded just like one of those Icelandic lullabies, but for once, the words were in English and I could understand. It was “Holocene” by the indie American band Bon Iver. And it was glorious.

But as much as I loved it from the first moment, I thought for sure it would remain some obscure song that nobody but me would like. As though I was special as a snowflake and it was written for me and only me.

Well. Apparently those Bon Iver guys had different plans. They decided to let other people listen to my special song. Then they went it sold it all over the world. Then they went and got themselves a Grammy nomination.

Seriously, where do they get the nerve?

Fine then. I’ll be the bigger party here and make peace with everyone sharing my special song, even though it won’t feel so special anymore. If you haven’t heard my special song, here is the video.

PS: Guess where it was filmed?

Yup. That’s Iceland.

Congrats to Bon Iver and best of luck with my special song at the Grammys this Sunday 🙂

Update: Wahoo! Bon Iver won.


  1. Lori says

    They won, Peaches! I’m sure it was your undying adoration that swayed the academy. 🙂

  2. Claudia says

    You should go to Iceland and see for yourself. If been there three times now, the beautiful scenery soothes the soul. The people up there are so friendly, nice and creative, and crazy in a very good way. Gotta love them.
    I felt at home from the first time being there, as strong as you discribed it, as if I would actually come home, at last. The first time, I stayed only for four days, but every time I travel there, I stay for a bit longer… It’s worth every minute.

  3. amy_hannah says

    I know that this is a comment on a post that is four months old, so you may never read it, but I wanted to say that I was having a really blah day and I rediscovered your blog and am now guzzling my way through the whole thing- and it’s making me feel a whole lot better! you are stupendous (and bon iver ain’t bad either)!

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