A few years ago, someone asked me what I’d say my Life Song is. I thought it must be a Thing, but apparently it isn’t. At least, a) I find no reference to the idea anywhere online and b) my DJ son has never heard of the term. So now I can say definitively what it means and now it can be a Thing because I’ve said so.
At the time and forever since, I’ve believed it to be a song that’s been with you for a long time, a song that has always resonated with you, that evokes deep feelings within you, a song for which your fondness never seems to tire. It won’t necessarily be associated with a particular time or incident in your life, but rather, with who you are on a deep level.
So here’s mine. I actually have two that I cannot choose between: “Over the Rainbow,” written by Harold Arlen and made famous by Judy Garland in the movie “Wizard of Oz;” and Bruce Springsteen’s “Hungry Heart.” At first they seem vastly different, don’t they? But I think only in terms of style.
To me, both songs evoke a feeling of yearning, of wanting something beyond the ordinary. Have a listen to Willie Nelson’s version of “Over the Rainbow” or Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s and of course only Bruce’s “Hungry Heart” and see what you think.
I cannot quite explain why both songs speak to me in just the way they do. I have always been a dreamer, always had high ideas for how I’d live my life. I do very much love the ordinary, in which I often find the extraordinary, as well as contentment. But as a creative soul, I’m always looking for love. Look what I’ve made, please love it, and, therefore, love me. Feed me! Feed my hungry heart.
So what is your Life Song? What song has spoken to you for most of your life? What song has resonated deeply for you beyond a particular incident, person, or time in your life? What would you want played to celebrate your life, when that time comes? I’d love to hear.
“And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche
“If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music.” ― Albert Einstein
“We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams.” ― Arthur William Edgar O’Shaughnessy, Poems
If you’re looking for my cards or art, you’ll find all of that on my website. If you enjoy these letters, feel free to forward this one to anyone you think might like it. And if someone forwarded this one to you, you can sign up here to receive the letters right in your Inbox. Finally, you’ll find past letters and poems here.
Thanks for listening,
P.S. MerryThoughts is the name of my first book, out of print at the moment. The word is a British one, referring both to a wishbone and to the ritual of breaking the wishbone with the intention of either having a wish granted or being the one who marries first, thus the “merry thoughts.”