Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The open of autumn

Autumn is my favorite season, and it is increasingly so every year, it seems. The new smell outside, the colors, the feel of the cool around my face with the rest of me bundled in a sweatshirt and other cuddly clothes.

Also, if you've known me for any length of time, you know I love art and music. There's always a reason behind both, a message to be conveyed: a nebulous feeling, a message of grace, a laugh... and very often the full meaning isn't spelled out. Books after books have been written in the attempt to pick apart the ancient pieces of art - what the symbols where and all the artist meant to say through them, the lighting, and the very colors chosen.

I sometimes wonder how accurate they really are - if the artists would laugh in the faces of the interpretors if they were alive to read the accounts.

Music though... music is like poetry. So much meaning can be behind simple phrases, ordinary words chosen for very specific reasons; meaning and reasons only the author can ever relay to their fullness.

The song at the bottom of this post was written by Caedmon's Call a decade ago and it was one of my favorites. But I don't know that I've ever fully understood the full message. If you're familiar, please try to turn the tune off in your head and just read the text, then tell me how the interpretation sounds.

Have you ever done that? I mean, songs do all sorts of weird things to the syntax of sentences for the sake of the rhythm and tune. You take a set of text and put the comma in a different place, you have a new sentence! I experience this a lot as I'm typing up the lyric sheets for Sundays - when they're sent to me as four words to a line when a line will fit eight, I combine them, but I try to do it grammatically correctly, with use of commas and such. And oh my gosh, it bothers the crap out of me when people put commas in where they don't belong simply because there's a pause in the song. Or for example, the last verse of Close of Autumn. "And the chains around me" is an incomplete thought. Who knows what it was meant to say? But if you add an apostrophe to "chain's," it becomes "and the chain [is] around me.

Okay, so, which chain? The chains of doing a lot of talking, as in the next phrase, or the chains of anger, in the phrase before? And is that "chains" negative or positive? By that I mean, do you drop the anger as something to ground yourself so that you aren't swept away by the tide of life... or does its weight hold you down, disallowing you to move on in life, so you choose to "drop it"? But if the chain to the anger is around you, and you drop the anger, you'll sink with it. Of course, if the "water" you sink into is the will and the grace of God, then it's a good thing. But anger? A good thing?

Has anyone else wondered about this song, or am I just slow?

When I'm cold and alone, all I want is my freedom and a sudden gust of gravity - I stop wailing and kicking just to let this water cover me, cover me. Only, if I rest my arms, rest my mind, You'll overcome me and swell up around me! With my fighting so vain, with my vanity so fought, I'm rolling over....

'Cause in just the same way the stream becomes swollen (swollen with cold, up over the ground), when my heart draws close to the close of autumn, Your love,
Your love abounds.

All this time I'm thinking, wondering, "How would it be to breathe in deep?" I guess I need to be careful when I ask for a drink - just might get what I ask for! And I know just what you'd say to me, that's why I don't ask you! ...what would I ask you? I'm like a bullheaded boy these days, crying "My toy's gone!" ...You're shiny and new.

Guess I'll drop my anger here before I float away... and the chain's around me. An awful lot of talking; I don't leave you much to say. You didn't ever leave me and my greatest fear was you'd leave me here. A long time back my feet could touch the bottom....

No comments: