Reading Matters

‘Our love became bipolar’

Here’s Carly Simon describing her 11-year-marriage to James Taylor in her new memoir, “Boys in the Trees.”

“Many marriages rise, fall, steady out again. You blurt out something unmentionable, reconcile again, and on and on into sunset. James’s and my marriage was like any other, because when all is said and done, marriage involves two people, who need food to subsist on and a house to provide them shelter from snow, wind, rain and too-hot August days, where they can bustle around, sleep, and rest their aching feet.

“The only differnce here was that James and I were both performers, private people in the public eye. Blame that, or our individual natures, but the waves and surf patterns defining our marrige were, I daresay, bigger and more turbulent than in most marriages. Our love became bipolar, switching from love to hate, and back again, sometimes within a day. The pleasure with James was pure euphoria, whereas the pain was, for me at least, almost unendurable. Throughout it all, I was ever aware of my watchfulness, a lighthouse sweep vigilantly seeking out clues that James loved me, that the two of us would be all right, that we would manage to get home safely. Because no matter how many years have now gone by, James for me, will always be a big part of what I call home.”

-- From “Boys in the Trees: A Memoir,” by Carly Simon. Flatiron Books, $28.99.

Dannye: dpowell@charlotteobserver.com

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