My Ears Hear Music Differently Now…
I believe this is because throughout my life, during my lowest times, it has always been music that sustained me. Music was the only thing I ever felt I could fully rely upon for support when I was grounded to my bedroom for a month; when I was in an uncertain or extremely stressful situation; when I was praising God in the choir; when I first really “made out” with someone; when I fell in love and when that fell apart, there was always a song in my heart. Now I actually find ways to fit lyrics to my pain. So I listen to music with my heart-break effecting my ears and find myself personalizing and redefining the meanings within.
I suppose we all do that. You can ask ten people what the meaning of a song or poem is and you will likely get ten different answers. (I think this is what angered me so in my college English courses; teachers want to assign definite, rigid meaning to a writers words, not allowing a reader to personalize the subject matter. In my opinion this is no way to experience any art). I recall a discussion I had late at night with my former spouse. He told me he received a poor grade in a literature class for not “realizing” a poem called (?)(I think) “Naming of the Parts” was about sex. He said the poem was about taking apart a firearm. I digress, my point is that it is normal to try to apply the meaning of art to something within the individual audience members experience. So now, everywhere I go I am reminded of the pain of my divorce in places where no painful memories or emotions existed before.
Pink Floyd has always been one of my favorite bands. I could listen to them all day. Here is an excerpt from “Two Suns in the Sunset” from “The Final Cut” album.
Like the moment when the brakes lock
And you slide towards the big truck
”Oh no!” ”[scream] Daddy, Daddy!”
You stretch the frozen moments with your fear.
And you’ll never hear their voices
And you’ll never see their faces
You have no recourse to the law anymore.
And as the windshield melts My tears evaporate
Leaving only charcoal to defend.
Finally I understand the feelings of the few.
Ashes and diamonds
Foe and friend
We were all equal in the end.
I used to think these words were about death in an automobile collision, now I think the wreck is a failed marriage and the loss of “two Suns” feels like death. Much like the loss of my 4 kids feels like a quadruple homicide in which their once deep love for me has been cut out like my beating heart.
In movies I can give you a prime example of a meaning changed for me forever. The Tom Cruise version of “War of the Worlds” to me has become a metaphor of a family struggling to work out custody, a step-father, a rebellious teenager and a helpless little girl are all issues faced by the Cruise father figure. His arrival at the home he once shared with his wife and children is so descriptive of the divorced home; an airliner has crashed into it nearly obliterating any resemblance of the home’s prior comfort, desperate, he is forced to spend the night there with his confused, scared, saddened children…
So you see, divorce, especially one as terrible as mine, changes your view of so much…