Hey there, Meredith Wilder here. Melinda is busy working away at the Borner Farm Project’s Pizza Night and wanted to keep this blog-a-day going. Lucky for me, today I’m flying back to ABQ from LA and have time to write. First off, I’m honored she would trust me to write something. Secondly, it’s too perfect that today’s prompt (from three years ago) is to “choose five songs that inspire you.”
1) Wilderness by Middle Brother
I’m keeping Melinda’s first choice because it actually would have been on my list, too. She wrote, “I could listen to this song every single day and not tire of it.” Same goes for me. I was driving around with the guys from Wildewood the first time I heard it and ever since then, that moment jumps out at me when I think of immediate connections with songs.
The line that means the most to me right now is:
“I’m most happy when I’m dreaming of success
And all my good friends call me wilderness”
There are so many different levels of success. To me, the success that makes me happy to dream about is the kind where I am giving back as much happiness as I am fortunate enough to experience. Not there yet… maybe I need more wilderness in my life.
2) Second Chances by Gregory Alan Isakov
Everyone I know who loves G.A.I. as much as me wonders what the hell must have happened to him. Whatever it was gave him the ability to write the most painfully beautiful songs I’ve ever heard. On the contrary, this song is slightly hopeful. The line that has been stuck in my head lately seems to be the moment he stumbles upon some kind of long-lost self-respect:
“I’m running from nothing, no thoughts in my mind
My heart was all black but I saw something shine
Thought that part was yours, but it might just be mine
I could share it with you if you gave me the time”
3) Chelsea Hotel by Leonard Cohen
As my boyfriend and I drove up to the Observatory in LA last night we listened to this song. It is brutally honest all throughout as Cohen reflects on a specific memory and man… the last line:
“I remember you well in the Chelsea Hotel,
that’s all, I don’t even think of you that often”
I think one of my biggest fears is only being remembered by a few people and only for a few moments but maybe that’s all that’s left once we leave this earth. (?)
4) Follow the River by Calexico
This is my song for Melinda right now. Once she decided to move to Wisconsin my whole life changed. We’re both learning more about independence than we ever could have of she stayed in Albuquerque.
“Still have the wounds that the sun won’t ever heal
Surrounded by the emptiness of everything, everyone
I’m not giving up, I’m getting there
No I can’t give up yet, I’m getting there”
We’re getting there, Melinda!
5) Peace in My Time by Simon Joyner
I recently saw Simon Joyner live. In my humble opinion it was a one of the best shows Albuquerque has ever had. Joyner is a personable artist and while he is not outwardly demanding in his performance I found myself completely pulled in and immersed in the set. This song showed up in my life when I wanted nothing more than to hold on to a love I had even though the timing was all wrong. This line was a warning for me even though I didn’t know it:
“So may broken hearts brace for that avalanche on the horizon
You and I got our scars looking for love beneath the last one”
Reading through Melinda’s choices from three years ago was tough. She was very hopeful and wide-eyed and even kind enough to put one of my songs on the list. A lot has changed since then but it all proves how even if we are sure of ourselves and what we want, life might have a different plan. And the songs we choose to listen to will remain proof of where we were.
That’s all I’ve got!
Thanks for reading my guest entry. Did you miss reading Melinda’s blog as much as me today?
Saved by second chances,