my life is a musical

tonight i took a bush van to porto novo (by myself! at night!) for class. i find that listening to my ipod shuffle on bush rides really helps to put things in perspective. odd. i know. but it’s like i have to have a backdrop of familiar music to remember just how unfamiliar my surroundings are. watching a woman walk down the road with a huge load on her head and a baby on her back… common enough… watching that same woman while listening to coldplay? or robert earl keen? or ani difranco? exotic and surreal.

so as i got comfy in my 6 inches of space this evening, i pressed play, wondering what the musical genius that is my shuffle would select for my listening pleasure. “all the trees of the field will clap their hands” by sufjan stevens. i closed my eyes, exhaled and smiled. here are the lyrics…

If I am alive this time next year,
will I have arrived in time to share?
And mine is about as good this far.
And I’m still applied to what you are.
And I am joining all my thoughts to you.
And I’m preparing every part for you.

And I heard from the trees a great parade.
And I heard from the hills a band was made.
And will I be invited to the sound?
And will I be a part of what you’ve made?
And I am throwing all my thoughts away.
And I’m destroying every bet I’ve made.
And I am joining all my thoughts to you.
And I’m preparing every part for you.

in the same way that the music colors my surroundings, my surroundings filter the music. words take on different or deeper meanings, songs become new again. i would discuss just how this song became new to me tonight, but i can’t write well enough to do so. and it wouldn’t mean the same to you anyhow. i mean, the lyrics are just one part of the entire experience. how can i possibly describe the effect of pitches, sound color, syncopation and repetition? and then all the memories that come with it… early mornings alone at MEA, contemplating preceptorial papers and fund raising while closing out grants… who was i then? who am i now? okay, enough already…

i’ve blogged about sufjan before. if you’re not already a fan, check him out.


3 thoughts on “my life is a musical

  1. chris says:

    This post made my morning – I’m about to send you an email about it…

  2. suzz says:

    lau, i want to be on your blog list. and also, i want your comments on my blog. then, it’s almost like we are just writing in each other’s diaries, instead of chatting over wine at metro. i know things are still crazy and overwhelming right now– but i am envying you the adventure of it all. and also the warmth. it’s cold as anything in reno!!!p.s.– are you bjork now? 😉

  3. My boyfriend recently claimed that Sufjan could possibly be “his Ani or Tori.” I’ve never given him enough of a chance, but now I think I must!

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