6 Joni Mitchell Songs to Cure a Broken Heart

Henry Diltz

There's nothing better for getting over a breakup than finding the perfect songs to express your emotions. No one knows that better than the legendary Joni Mitchell.

She first broke onto the folk scene in New York. She began writing lovely tales of relationships that have since become staples of nearly everyone's broken-hearted periods. For a few decades now, she's mended a lot of hearts.

In honor of Mitchell's 70th birthday today, here are six of her songs that are truly capable of healing a broken heart:

1. "I Don't Know Where I Stand"

Breakup Stage: When there's new distance in the relationship.

Breakup Wisdom: "I know that I miss you / But I don't know where I stand."

2. "Blue"

Breakup Stage: When you're deciding if it's over.

Breakup Wisdom: "Crown and anchor me or let me sail away ... You can make it through these waves."

3. "Down to You"

Breakup Stage: When you're mourning and need to be reminded that better times will come.  

Breakup Wisdom: "Everything comes and goes / Marked by lovers and styles of clothes / Things that you held high and told yourself were true / Lost or changing as the days come down to you."

4. "River"

Breakup Stage: When you're regretting pushing your loved one away. Especially appropriate around the holiday season.

Breakup Wisdom: "I'm so hard to handle / I'm selfish and I'm sad / Now I've gone and lost the best baby that I ever had ... I made my baby say goodbye."

5. "A Case of You"

Breakup Stage: When you're recognizing there were flaws in the relationship.

Breakup Wisdom: "I remember that time you told me you said / 'Love is touching souls' / Surely you touched mine / 'Cause part of you pours out of me / In these lines from time to time."

(Bonus: The woman who warns her, "Go to him, stay with him if you can, but be prepared to bleed.")

6. Both Sides, Now

Breakup Stage: When you've accepted the breakup and are finally moving on. 

Breakup Wisdom: "I've looked at love from both sides now / From give and take, and still somehow / It's love's illusions I recall / I really don't know love at all."

As Mitchell said about her album, Blue, "At that period in my life, I had no personal defenses. I felt like a cellophane wrapper on a pack of cigarettes. I felt like I had absolutely no secrets from the world and I couldn't pretend in my life to be strong. Or to be happy. But the advantage of it in the music was that there were no defenses there either."

Because of Joni's openness, listeners can always find resilience and solace in her music — lessons in how to be strong and happy, even in the face of heartbreak.