26 April 2005

Counting Crows

Today I pondered a curious deep empathy with a fragile friend far away. I thought of that soul struggling with a profound sadness, yearning to be valued and wanted. I sat on my lunchtime park bench counting crows. One for sorrow, two for joy, three for a girl, etc... They can be called magpies.

Sometimes a connection stops you in your tracks. Eleven years ago I would have thought, "I need to get me a little oblivion" but these days I accept my emotions. Black and white feathers strut about me inspecting the ground for scraps. They come singly and in pairs causing me to smile and re-start the familiar rhyme. I lean back and turn up the volume on my mp3 player. The man sings, "Omaha. Somewhere in middle America."
The crows come and go, flapping and squabbling. I turn the music louder and suddenly think of crying. The park is tiny and invariably empty but I resist the feeling. Then the man sings "Yeah we stare at the beautiful women. She's perfect for you. Man, there's got to be somebody for me" and I feel a huge lump in my throat. Eyes unblinking, I sink into the music.

I stare out over my usual stretch of water which shimmers like silver today.
"And I'll walk on water every chance I get." Why the fuck am I relating to these songs so powerfully? I lock my emotions away don't I? Well I am certainly 'all or nothing' I won't sit on the fence. As a soft rain starts to fall the man sings "I am anywhere but in between."
Now I don't think I can go back to work this afternoon.

I glance at my watch and see 1.50pm, the rain gets heavier. Funny how you get used to the volume of music. I nudge it higher and am reminded that it's raining in Baltimore
"I need a phone call, I need a raincoat."
My friend is clear in my mind and I think they are listening to good music too. I get up and walk.

"I'd like to hear a little guitar,
I think it's time to put the top down."
Counting Crows - Raining in Baltimore

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