Earlier this week my wife and I went camping for a few days just north of the city in one of my favorite places, the Hudson Valley. I have written about my love of this area, not to mention the happiness that a few days camping usually brings for us in previous blogs. A line from a song entered my head soon after we had arrived and gotten accustomed to our surroundings, unpacked the car, set up the tent, cracked open a beer, and after my wife had built a fire. The line summed up precisely what I was feeling at that exact moment.
“I can see the world from here
And it sometimes makes me want to disappear
Back to nature, and where we belong”
Even if I only go camping only once a year, it seems important to have those sorts of getaway moments in my life. I’m sure we all feel the same way at certain times, no doubt helped by things we see and hear on the news that make us want to shut down for awhile. As I sat at our campsite, the cold crisp air and bright colors of autumn working their magic on me, that lyric was stuck in my head and would not go away. Though sometimes that can be a problem out of fear that someone might find out that you are secretly humming along to a song you have professed to dislike, this was an occasion where I actually welcomed it being there. Funnily enough though, the same lines kept swimming around in my head, and even in that still and (mostly) silent air, I could not work through the rest of the lyric beyond the chorus. I find that a funny thing about lyrics sometimes. There seems to be some deep down, possibly psychological reason that we get caught in that sort of loop and it seems to coincide with what we are feeling/experiencing at that moment. Almost as if the rest of the lyric needs to remain impenetrable.
It remained stuck there the entire trip, and once home I had to play the song as soon as we had everything settled and stored away in an effort to appease my brain from thinking about it so much. As I scrolled through to find the song, and just before hitting play on my Ipod, it all suddenly and miraculously appeared in full to my brain in that split second between choosing the song and the music starting. Everything that had been missing mere hours before was suddenly recollected in an instant. The catchy drum opening, a glide of a bass note, a tambourine shake, and a strummed guitar before the opening lines are sung. Suddenly I could remember every nuance once again.
The song was Say It With Love by The Moody Blues. Though some people might disregard their music for various reasons I think anyone doing so does it at their own risk. They have a massive collection of hits over more than 40 years, managing to refocus their sound and stay contemporary throughout that span, which is no easy task in the fickle world of music. I have also written in past blogs about my prog rock phase in college and the Moodies certainly fell into that category for parts of their career, yet they managed to keep the hits coming. From Nights In White Satin, Question, I’m Just A Singer In A Rock & Roll Band, Ride My See-Saw, The Voice, Your Wildest Dreams, Legend Of A Mind and loads more those hits came from all members of the group, but early on when I started listening to them, it was the songs of guitarist Justin Hayward that I especially took a liking too. I seemed to feel a connection to his lyrics on a personal level more, much like with Say It With Love.
After coming out of the fog and familiarizing myself with the song again, I realized it was about so much more for me than that one line about getting back to nature. Yes that is what triggered it but I wondered if there was something more. When I played it the other day my wife commented on the phrase-Say It With Love, and she mentioned that she wished more people were able to do that in their lives. Just acting on those words- Say it with love. I realized as the song was playing that what had started out as an earworm about being back in nature had somehow developed into something more important. It is something I realized I need to incorporate into my own life more. Not just to my wife and family and friends and all of my fellow bloggers, but in all the interactions I have throughout the day. Sure there are moments where those words will fall on deaf ears, but looking at things more positively, and saying words with love and not hate or anger is an admirable goal. I think we are afraid to say the words sometimes but the Moody Blues said it right, and it is a useful phrase now that I remember all of the song!
“Wherever you go
Whatever you do
Whatever you say
Say, say, say…Say It With Love”
Say It With Love-Written By Justin Hayward
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