The Song

I am in love with a Song.

The Song makes me uncomfortable, it makes me writhe inside. It’s all my loneliness and sadness and fear and yearning for something I can’t describe all wrapped up in two and a half minutes. I just listen and weep. The Singer is utterly inconsolable and so am I.

The Voice is a deep, metal purr. It’s a flash flood over gravel, a rolling growl that makes every other sound in the world shrink away. The words are tragedy, but the Voice, that rumbling, gritty Voice, is agony. I’ve never heard anything quite like it. The Song is pure rage and heartbreak, a sharp pain captured in an extraordinary expression of grief and regret.

The Sound feels like the hollow, sucking rejection of your ego when you love someone and they don’t love you back. It is breathless fantasies about someone you can never touch. It is the roller-coaster drop in your stomach when you have a first kiss with the most beautiful soul you’ve ever met. It is the anticipation of thrusting your hands into someone’s hair and pulling their face close to yours. It is the tangled desperation of human need while the world burns to cinders around you. It is loss. I listen to the Song over and over again to feel all of those things. I hate that it hurts and I love that too, and I have to keep playing the Song because I might forget.

The Song is holding a mirror up to my life, partly mocking me, partly understanding. It feels alien and also exactly as I would expect it to feel. I don’t know what the Writer was feeling when they wrote the Song; I only know what it says to me. It whispers: you are a failure. It hisses: no one will ever love you. It sighs: I understand you. I see you. Let me hold you much, much too tightly.

Sometimes there is a Song that matches you in a snapshot in time. It may not have struck you the first time you heard it, and it may not rip your heart to shreds in a couple of months. But when the frequency of the song and the sine wave of your existence merge into one, the obsession begins. This is that Song right now. I can’t listen to it because it hurts too much, and I can’t stop listening to it because it feels like nothing else can reach the hollow at my core.


Planes Mistaken for Stars: “Never Felt Prettier”


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