This song broke my heart five times today. And it’s not just because summer lightening turned the sky lavender as I drove home in the rain, the perfect Gaslight scene.
First I simply couldn’t get the chorus out of my head, because the vocal line’s so beautiful. And the guitars are so mournful. Have we all not buried the thought of someone somewhere so deep that we’d never have to feel it again?
But then, it made me think of unrooted family trees, and about answers, the need to find them within ourselves, our families, our compound histories.
“And I’m not looking for your love
I’m only sniffing out blood
Just a little taste of where I came from”
So it’s a beautiful song, and I keep listening to it (along with the rest of this fantastic album that I will surely bring up again). And then it really sinks in that, perhaps unlike our sorrowful narrator, I have a mom and a dad, who I really should call even if they have no idea what the hell to say to me anymore. I have so much to ask them — what is stopping me? One day I will not have the chance. Some never get it to start. There is much about my own history I do not understand, and the mysteries are buried about 150 miles north at the state line…
“And at the bottom of this river
Is where I put you down to lay
So I can live with it
And in my heart, heart, heart there are these waters
Where I put you down to lay
While I learn to live with it
Keepsake, until I’m free”
The Gaslight Anthem, Handwritten