Been listening to music while doing other stuff lately, and when lines I especially like come up in the songs, I've been posting them to Twitter.
Due to the 140-character limit, I've had to truncate a few of them, and in some cases left off attributions. Figured I'd repost here, where I have a bit more space to work with. Dates and times are the timestamps of when I posted 'em.
It started with a Vienna Teng song. Don't know that I can explain the effects of her lyrics on me, but I like 'em.
but hold back—
where is safety?
—Vienna Teng, "The Tower" (9:16 PM Feb 11th)
And then a Brad Paisley song came on, and it seemed like a fitting pre-Valentine's-Day echo of that safety-vs-danger idea:
If love was a plane, nobody'd get on.
—Brad Paisley, "If Love Was a Plane" (9:28 PM Feb 11th)
Of course, it is, after all, a country song; by the end of the song, he says "Even knowing our chances are small / We line up at the gate with our tickets" and so on.
A little later, I found this one running through my head even though it hadn't come up in iTunes:
May the rain run off your shoulder when you're caught in a storm;
When the frost comes a-calling, may it find you safe and warm.
May your place be set; may your promises be kept;
May you never forget you are loved.
—Fred Small, "Willie's Song" (9:50 PM Feb 11th)
The next night, more Vienna Teng came along; this is my favorite bit of one of my favorite songs of hers:
It's the season of bowing our heads in the wind
And knowing we are not alone in fear,
Not alone in the dark.
—Vienna Teng, "The Atheist Christmas Carol" (1:05 AM Feb 13th)
In perhaps somewhat the same vein, iTunes continued the next morning with a doubly seasonally appropriate song:
You stopped and pointed and you said, "That's a crocus,"
And I said, "What's a crocus?" and you said, "It's a flower";
I tried to remember, but I said, "What's a flower?"
You said: "I still love you."
—Dar Williams, "February" (11:38 AM Feb 13th)
(Even though I feel a little silly quoting that song in a California February; I didn't even know what a crocus was until I went off to college out East.)
(Morrisa's reply on Facebook cracked me up: "Crocus? But you just met us!")
That night, in a very different vein, came my favorite hip-hop song (he said, as if he knew enough about hip-hop to have a favorite). My favorite lines from it derive from Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye, but they were too long to fit in Twitter even abbreviated, so I went with a short punchy bit:
Your firearms are too short to box with God.
—Black Star, "Thieves in the Night" (12:02 AM Feb 14th)
But aside from that song, somehow iTunes really seemed to be in sync with my kind of melancholy mood that weekend:
Oh, this rain it will continue in the morning as I'm listening
to the bells of the cathedral; I am thinking of your voice . . .
and of the midnight picnic once upon a time before the rain began.
—Suzanne Vega, "Tom's Diner" (9:30 AM Feb 14th)
And I had saved up my other favorite bit of that Vienna Teng song for posting on V-Day:
It's the season of eyes meeting over the noise
and holding fast with sharp realization.
It's the season of cold making warmth a divine intervention.
You are safe here.
—Vienna Teng, "The Atheist Christmas Carol" (9:45 AM Feb 14th)
This entry's getting long, so I'll save the rest for another entry.