Thursday, 31 March 2016

A million years ago. . .

I only wanted to have fun
Learning to fly
Learning to run
I let my heart decide the way
When I was young
Deep down I must have always known
That this would be inevitable
To earn my stripes I would have to pay
And bare my soul

Do you often reminisce about when things were easier, you know, that easier time when things weren't as complicated, when you didn't have to make adult decisions and just do whatever you wanted to do without having to worry about consider other people.  I'm not saying that you were formerly some kind of negligent individual who was entirely selfish and didn't do anything for anyone, but just that, there is something quietly satisfying about doing something for yourself that doesn't require some kind of checking-in process with other people; you were just truly free.  How much did you have to pay to earn your stripes?  What are those stripes anyway and what do they represent?  If a leopard can't change his spots, could a tiger or zebra change his stripes?  We spend so much time trying to earn achievements and win challenges and collect tokens - but we lost sight of what's important.  Only each individual truly knows deep within - what priorities should rise to the surface of their lives.

I know I'm not the only one
Who regrets the things they've done
Sometimes I just feel it's only me 
Who can't stand the reflection that they see
I wish I could live a little more
Look up to the sky, not just the floor
I feel like my life is flashing by
And all I can do is watch and cry
I miss the air, I miss my friends
I miss my mother, I miss it when
Life was a party to be thrown
But that was a million years ago

When you think that you're the only one that has been through this, the whole phase of regret that you find yourself in, you might find that it leaves a bitter after taste in your mouth where once sweetness and joy lived.  As sad as thing song is, I think it's has a melancholic beauty of a melody that can haunt the listener and very easily entice them to put it on repeat, like constantly, like, it never ended until you pressed stop. One thing that I love about Adele and her music is the simplicity in which her accompaniment is stark in contrast to the richness in her tone, the texture of her voice that we get to hear in its fullest range of dynamics in this song - low and sotto voce for the verses and then full voice in the choruses to illustrate the word painting that only true artists can inject into their music performance.  It's that sonic magic that resonates deep within one's soul - something I love insanely about music.

When I walk around all the streets
Where I grew up and found my feet
They can't look me in the eye
It's like they're scared of me
I try to think of things to say
Like a joke or a memory
But they don't recognise me now
In the light of day

Do you spend your time trying to make other people feel comfortable?  Like you constantly have to go out of your way to be hospitable or you think you have to test a 'tough crowd' by being someone you're not.  Why are people scared of you?  What did you do or what was done to you that they will never understand?  Why can't people recognise you? Trying to think of things to say shouldn't be so difficult.  Most of the time you can just ask the right questions to make people talk about themselves so that you can listen.  In the light of day, sometimes harsh reality can set in or you can see things for what they truly are and see it all in scale.  Some things aren't as big as they appear to be.

I know I'm not the only one
Who regrets the things they've done 
Sometimes I just feel it's only me 
Who can't stand the reflection that they see
I wish I could live a little more
Look up to the sky, not just the floor
I feel like my life is flashing by
And all I can do is watch and cry
I miss the air, I miss my friends
I miss my mother, I miss it when
Life was a party to be thrown
But that was a million years ago

I hope you learn eventually that regrets are not meant to be opportunities to dwell on past disappointments or a failure to recognise actions that should have been taken, but rather that they are lessons that you learned to improve your current state of mind, to inform your future course of actions, to find the inner peace within yourself to know that you were meant to do those things or say those words in order to realise how loved you are by everyone else who truly cares about you.  We don't need to prove anything to anyone anymore.  The more that you subscribe to that, then you will have lost the game before you've even started playing.  There's no need to miss things, no need to miss people.  If time is irrelevant, which it definitely is for me, then you will see too, that you can live a little more right now, and not just think that you had it all a million years ago. . . 

Getting better. . .

This blog post is for everyone who helps make me feel that my life - it's getting better all the time. . 

I used to get mad at my school (No I can't complain) 
The teachers who taught me weren't cool (No I can't complain)
You're holding me down (Oh) turning me round (Oh)
Filling me up with your rules (foolish rules)

I guess there would be some times in your life where you had some bad memories of school.  There would have been some teachers that you had, who might not have ever thought you would amount to anything in life and written you off when you were a child.  Either you cried at the thought of their low opinion of you, or you used that as fuel to improve your lot in life, to really dig deep and focus on proving their assumptions about - completely wrong.  Did you succeed in being able to rid yourself of the rules that they imposed on you?  As an adult now, would you consider them to be foolish rules?

I've got to admit it's getting better (better)
A little better all the time (it can't get more worse)
I have to admit it's getting better (better)
It's getting better since you've been mine

I think as much as you allow negative energy to get in the way of your destiny, you must start turning the tide yourself and start thinking about how much you should be appreciating all of the things that you have in your life.  Having an attitude of gratitude may be hard to sustain but once you start practicing what that actually means in your life - you will find that you are better off, that things will actually start to get better, because you have a better approach to how to live life, and who you choose to make you life, even better by living together, growing together in that better life.

Me used to be angry young man
Me hiding me head in the sand
You gave me the word, I finally heard
I'm doing the best that I can

Have you had trouble trying to tell someone that they have anger issues?  Maybe it was hard to broach that particular topic or start to have that conversation that could centre on some simple questions like - why are you so angry?  Are you often angry like this?  What does being angry in this way help to achieve?  We all understand that being angry allows the person a chance to release some of the pent up frustration about a situation that has gone awry or hasn't followed a plan, or you feel that you have been wronged in a situation and you want some retribution or some acknowledgement about it.  Maybe taking our heads out of the sand is a good start to getting on a pathway to this.

I used to be cruel to my woman
I beat her and kept her apart from the things that she loved
Man I was mean but I'm changing my scene
And I'm doing the best that I can (ooh)

Does it make men feel better to be cruel to their women?  Does it make him feel more manly and more of a champion to use and abuse women for their male egos?  I'm just asking these questions, as patriarchal societies have a lot to answer for - particularly if they exercise these ways of being.  I hope that men start changing their scene and start realising the worth of a woman.  They forget that they came out of mothers, who carried them for nine months before they were born.  I personally don't understand how a man can mistreat a woman in such a heinous way, unless of course his love for his mother and healthy respect for women is only surpassed by other things that he allows to take precedence - like money, fame, control and ultimately, power.

I've got to admit it's getting better (better)
A little better all the time (it can't get more worse)
I have to admit it's getting better (better)
It's getting better since you've been mine

When do you start to believe and think that things are getting better?  I guess it's when you make a decision that things actually are better, no matter how dire a situation seems, it all comes down to a matter of scale - how big people seem to view a problem.  What may seem like a potential crisis to someone may seem like something minuscule to someone else.  I think it's possible to see the good in any situation.  It takes a lot of determination, willpower and just plain old patience, but there are always opportunities for improvement, there are always pathways that can lead to success - if you want it to.

Getting so much better all the time
It's getting better all the time
Better, better, better
It's getting better all the time
Better, better, better
Getting so much better all the time

I hope you realise how much better your life is, wherever you are.  I hope that you are able to smile and laugh with your friends and appreciate how important good people are in your life, and it wouldn't hurt to show appreciation for their love and support - so thank you to all my friends.  I have also found that life gets better all the time, when we are able to make meaningful connections with new people who are able to elevate our thinking and allow us the scope to understand the beauty of humanity in action - so thank you to everyone who makes me feel this way.  I'm just so excited that things are getting so much better all the time. . .  

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Under the table. . .

I've been having conversations with lots of people around about love lately.
I've mentioned unrequited love before in many previous blog posts, and I've also explored ideas around being afraid to venture into love, being afraid to fall in love, because people are afraid to feel.  This song speaks to me about moments in one's life where there is a mismatch of feelings, that imbalance that occurs when you can't contain how your love can overflow, whereas you can be faced with someone who seems incapable of love, but in reality, may be out of practice, never really loved anyone before, or they've been burned when they tried to venture out in that battlefield of love.

It already started
I tried to stop it but I already know
You are something I should do without
But I won't
Under the table
Just keep wishing I'll come out but I don't
You are something I should do without
But I won't

Why do we find ourselves drawn to unsuitable people?  Is it because we think we can change them or that there is more to them than meets the eye, which is probably more pronounced or obvious when you are the complete opposite in nature to them.  That complete opposite in nature business then leans itself or gives weight to the old adage of "opposites attract".  But what do opposites actually attract?  Heartache?  Moments of madness?  Questioning our own sanity and the lengths that we go to in the name of love to achieve our own ends, because the means that we follow through on may abuse what love is supposed to be and taint, forever ruin, what love is supposed to be in one's life - a mutual understanding of faith and trust in each other, a genuine desire and healthy respect for each other and knowing that each time, you are always just there for each other, not there for self, but for each other.

Please tell me that this could be easy
I'm tired of waiting for permission to love
Heartbreak is your game, but I'm learning
My heart could be yours, won't make it your home

I guess it can be a difficult or challenging thing when someone isn't prepared to accept your love, will not allow you to love them because they are probably just as afraid to be loved inasmuch as you're so confident to love.  I find that quite ironic in a way, when you're ready to love someone, but they aren't prepared to be loved because they don't know what that feels like, because maybe deep down inside, they can't understand how you could possibly love them when they are struggling to find things to love about themselves.

I'm already falling
I couldn't help it, didn't think of the risks
I got a problem, a problem when I look in your eyes
You're mine and you know it
I'd still do it even if we were cursed
Won't you be my problem it's okay with me if it hurts. . . 

This final verse reminds me of the trailer that I watched for Crossbreed the latest installment in the Twilight series.  That intense feeling of being drawn to each other and even though you know it's a train wreck, a car crash, a plane crash, a bomb waiting to go off - you can't help how you feel.  That fascinates me - the feeling of not being able to actually control your feelings.  That would be a huge adrenalin rush.  I had the opportunity one year, I think it was the year that Twilight the book was released, and Barack Obama had re-released his memoir Dreams from my father.  I had a choice to make between the two books - and I decided to purchase the Obama memoir.

Sometimes you need to break away from something intense like this because at the end of the day you really need to get our from under the table. . . 

Home. . .

Thinking back when we first met, I remember what you said
You said you'd never leave me yeah
I let go of your hand, built my castle in the sand
But I'm reaching out again and I'm not letting go, till you

I don't know who you subscribe to when it comes to believing in a higher power, or what you believe in that helps to centre you as an individual within this world.  I always find that this song speaks to me on many levels and even though I've heard it so many times, sung by so many different people in many different circumstances, but I can never go past the original recording of this song by Brian McKnight.  How often have you let go and decided that you knew what was best for yourself only to find that it was the wrong decision.  Of course, if you're like me, there are never any mistakes in life, because you are meant to learn about everything that happens to you - good or bad.  You can't have one without the other - that's not the type of world we live in.

Hold me, mould me, sometimes I feel so all alone
See I gotta find my way back home so why don't you
Shape me, make me, wash me whiter than the snow
I gotta find my way, back home

There's something that comes with submission to that higher power and acknowledging that without trusting and believing in Him (or Her, I'm not fussed about what gender preference you have) you would be lost.  We can only ever allow ourselves to be shaped, made and washed because we have placed our trust and utter confidence in being taken care of in this way.  No matter where I turn I see so many instances in the world where there are tragedies and victims of those tragedies.  It almost seems as if the world loves reporting bad news all the time, our social media networks are completely saturated in it.

Master upon my knees I pray
I just wanna be the clay, put your arms around me yeah
Place my life in your hands, Lord I know I'm just a man
Though you understand, this time I'm not letting go
Till you 

Do you want to make something of your life and do something worthwhile, meaningful, but you don't know how?  It's important that you start to surround yourself with people and connect with people who can help you to achieve this.  It is important to find and connect with people you can trust, people who understand your desires to serve, to be better than what you think you are, better than what you were lead to believe rather than what people perceive you to be.  The only person you need to convince that you're worthy of being someone that can be used as an instrument of purpose - is yourself.

Anoint me, appoint me, sometimes I feel so all alone
See I gotta find my way back home, so why don't you
Chastise me, baptize me, wash me whiter than the snow
I gotta find my way
Cos I'm lost and alone, I've been wandering long enough to know
Humbly I search for you and I'm not gonna rest till you

It was always going to be a lonely journey thinking about how you were going to serve the masses, be a dutiful member of your own family that looked out for them as well as thinking about how much people have come to rely on you within your own community.  Can you handle the pressure?  Can you handle the stress?  It is too easy to compare yourself to others around who you think have it easier than you.  They only have it easier because they have yet to realise what their true destiny is - to be a human with purpose and drive to make the world a better place than when we entered it.  I mean, this is the only reason for why we are restless and reckless people - we are impatient with how slow life can seemingly be, but what is time but a portal that has a beginning and end point - the duration in between can't be accurately measured because it depends on who's looking.  One millennium in our world's lifetime may only be one second in God's time.  That has always fascinated me.  Makes me wonder if that's why people are in different time zones in this world.  And I'm not just talking about the international dateline when I refer to that.

Choose me, use me, sometimes I feel so all alone
I am on my way back home, so why don't you
Direct me, bless me, wash me whiter than the snow
I am on my way. . . back home. . . 

I believe that when we reach a state of enlightenment within ourselves because we have searched and found answers that lead us to more questions - it is only then that I believe we are more on the path to going to our spiritual home more than ever.  I sometimes think that the reason we can feel alone sometimes is because we won't really feel a part of something until we have reconnected with those who have gone before us.

But I guess until that day arrives, there is still more that needs to be done here in this world.  No matter how hard things get, how hard the struggles may be, we must retain our faith in what will benefit all people.  I think about the America elections and I think about which candidates best reflect what is best for their people - the few who fund the elections with their money, or the masses of voters who would elect them into power?  I guess we'll never know how things are really meant to be until we are on our way back home. . . 

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

A horse with no name. . .

On the first part of the journey 
I was looking at all the life
There were plants and birds and rocks and things
There was sand and hills and rings

Being on a journey, actually, deciding to go on a journey can definitely be a daunting task.  Sometimes we might be on a journey that we don't know we're on because we might be pushed to our limits, we find ourselves stretched to the very limits of our personal endurance and strength.  Do you take the time to notice what you pass by on your journey?  Sometimes we forget to think about the other things that are around us when we are in dire straits.  We need to be more vigilant about what is around us.

The first thing I met was a fly with a buzz
And the sky with no clouds
The heat was hot and the ground was dry
But the air was full of sound

Do you do enough listening in your life?  Being aware of what is happening by opening your ears up to really hear and really listen to your surroundings is critically important for your survival.  When you hear those sounds, are they pleasing sounds to your ear?  Are they sounds that become cause for alarm?  I guess it's all about relying on your instincts more and recognising when you need to take action for situations that cross your path.

I've been through the desert with a horse with no name
It felt to be out of the rain
In the desert you can remember your name
Cause there ain't no one for you to give you no pain
La, la

When I think about riding through the desert with a horse with no name, I wonder how I came across this horse.  Did I befriend this horse?  Why don't I know the horse's name?  To be able to find some respite after wandering aimlessly with this horse, suggests to me that I'm not just moving forward, going through the motions, but there is no set destination in my mind.  We can find some comfort from time to time but will we find the eternal peace and rest that we can rely upon?

After nine days I let the horse run free
Cause the desert had turned to sea
There were plants and birds and rocks and things
There was sand and hills and rings

Letting go of something that you think you need to ride out because it's the only way of moving, can be difficult to achieve, because there might be some collateral, but it's an extremely necessary exercise.  You will still see the same things that you saw in your journey when you first started out, but I guess the difference will be that you are now in control of how these things can flourish, you can start to appreciate life again and really start to see things again for the first time.

The ocean is a desert with it's life underground
And a perfect disguise above
Under the cities lies a heart made of ground
But the humans will give no love

It can be hard to get to know people and connect with them.  If we spend so much time swimming around in the ocean, only seeing what is on the surface, but failing to see what lies beneath, we will never really appreciate what we are confronted with.  What is the perfect disguise that you have been faced with?  Why has no love been given by us to these underground cities?  There is a sense that there is definitely more than meets the eye, but whether the eye is prepared to look is another dilemma altogether.

You see I've been through the desert with a horse with no name
It felt good to be out of the rain
In the desert you can remember your name
Cause there ain't no one for to give you no pain. . . 

I hope that from time to time, when you find yourself either caught in the desert or the rain, that you are able to respond appropriately, depending on your situation to your surroundings.  When we think about how there is a constant need, a core belief, that we must know who we are, and especially within extreme circumstances, that we find solace and comfort in remembering our names.  What does your name mean to you?

I hope that when you say your name to yourself that nobody is able to give you anymore pain. . .

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Feel good. . .

I don't know if it's because it's Easter Sunday here in Aotearoa and we're celebrating the resurrection of Jesus our Lord and Saviour, but I feel good about myself.  There will be times in your life where you don't feel good about yourself because of some bad decisions you've made, you've exercised poor judgement and there might be repercussions for that, but those don't define who you are - in fact, those are just part of the many moments that you will have in your life - but they don't encapsulate the essence of you and what you bring to the world.

I just wanna feel good everyday
I wanna wear a smile upon my face
I wanna feel the joys of the day
I wanna feel alive in every moment
Said I won't waste time on feeling blue
I won't waste time on things I cannot change
I'm gonna live these days as best as I can
Doing everything that feels right

There might be people who have set out to exploit you and make you feel like you're not even in control of your own life anymore, but you know what, you have the power to say no.  You can stand up for yourself and say you no what?  I'm done feeling bad about myself because you think that's how I should feel.  We too, like Jesus, can resurrect ourselves and rise above what people think we should be, rise above our own insecurities and doubts that have been planted by people who want to use us and make us do what they want.  It's not about them anymore.  Unfortunately in some cases, we might not be able to change those people, and it's not because we can't change them - but rather they see nothing wrong what they're doing and they're quite happy to keep doing what they're doing, to benefit from your misfortunes.

Singing la la la la la
La la la la la lalala la
La la la la la lalala la
La la la la la lalala la. . . . 

In previous blog posts I've sometimes been critical of songs that have nonsense syllables peppered throughout the songs, but you know what, in this song, it just feels good.  Are you going through a period of transition?  They say the only thing that's constant these days is change - but I would rather that I change not just for change's sake, but because I'm changing to be better than I was before.  I think this is opportunity that I present to myself when I have those chances to change - it's because I've recognised that there is something within me that is evolving, that will affect me in a positive way and I must allow the transformation to take its course - it's something I can't control, but nor would I want to, because I'm just becoming a better version of myself.

I wanna hear the laughter of a child
I wanna feel the hug from a loving friend
I wanna hear "I love you" every now and then
I wanna show somebody that I care
Cause feeling good is a choice that we all make
Just like a smile is a small effort you make
I love to feel the newness of a brand new day
Happy to be alive today

It is natural to want to surround yourself with things that make you feel good - heck, it's pretty super important in my book.  Too often we can allow, yes I say allow because we can ultimately do so much within our lives - whether we're willing to work for it or not - so we need to just go ahead and make things happen.  There are just times where you have to dig your heels in and tap that steely determination that you hide within yourself that's a little bit rusty and out-of-use because you haven't really exercised it in a while.  But that's ok.  You've got a chance to work on it now and start putting in the hard yards now to get everything to fruition the way you had always planned but seemed to take yourself off course somehow.

Singing la la la la la
La la la la la lalala la
La la la la la lalala la
La la la la la lalala la

I hope that if you aren't feeling good in you life right now, that you start to take some steps to remember what feeling good is like.  I don't think everyone can understand what you go through on a daily basis that would cause you pain, guilt and the ability to not feel good about you being in this world would be.  What is one person's joy may be another person's pain, because how we feel can impact on others without us fully realising it or never being able to understand how interconnected we actually are.

If feeling good is a choice that we can all make, it does start small and the less we feel that our own self worth or just the simple amazing way we feel about ourselves can be captured within our minds and souls and more importantly our hearts, then I know then that we are headed in the right direction to just let go of all pain and insecurities, minimise the scale of the trials and troubles that may lay ahead and just for now, be present in the moment and just feel good. . . 

Monday, 21 March 2016

Never saw blue like that. . .

Today we took a walk up the street
And picked a flower and climbed the hill
Above the lake. . . 

I have always been fascinated by people who have a really good memory, you know, the kind of people who have that mega memory brain that remembers names, events, places, things, people, what clothes people wore, what words were said or shared, what smells lingered in the air.  I've been told I have that kind of ability, one where I remember so much,  I often wonder whether it is a blessing or a curse in that sense, because it feels like even if you wanted to forget something, you can't really, because you will always remember.  Even something as simple and sweet as a walk up the street and remembering places that you walk past and just drink it in with your eyes.

And secret thoughts were said aloud
We watched the faces in the clouds
Until the clouds had blown away

Do you see faces in the clouds?  It's something that not everyone is able to do, but something I have been able to do as a child.  I guess it's something that comes and goes depending on how in tune you allow yourself to be connected to it.  Do the clouds blow away because we lose the ability to make out those faces as we grow older?  When we stop believing in things that made us feel safe and loved?  I guess it comes down to how you are able to see the world with someone who understands what you see.

And were we ever somewhere else
You know, it's hard to say

It can be hard to imagine yourself being somewhere else physically when you make a discovery about yourself or someone else and you are able to process this in your mind, recognising the present moment, taking it all in - not knowing if anywhere else ever seemed to be as important as where you are right now.

And I never saw blue like that before
Across the sky
Around the world
You've given me all you have and more
And no one else has ever shown me how
To see the world the way I see it now
Oh, I, I never saw blue like that

I think people don't realise how much they can give to others, even when you think that you don't give anything, in fact, you don't give anything, but in the act of not giving anything substantial, you're actually giving more than you will ever know, because that is the lesson that needs to be learned.  When you realise something. you will start to see colours so differently, you will start to see things that you have never quite seen before, you will be able to see and feel a blue that you have never experienced before.  This isn't a sad or bad thing, it's just a new way of experiencing something that is new, that is different, could be exciting and terrifying at the same time - and if that means that you need to embrace your greatness, that's your OMG moment - a reminder that I tell myself and others to do - to "own my greatness".  Even in my deepest and darkest sadness, I can still own my greatness.

I can't believe a month ago
I was alone, I didn't know you
I hadn't seen or heard your name
And even now, I'm so amazed
It's like a dream, it's like a rainbow, it's like the rain

You will come across people in your life's path that you won't be able to explain why you're connected but that doesn't matter.  You will spend your entire life trying to figure out what matters and even then, that comes in phases depending on what's happening with you, around you, without you.  Do you feel like the older you get, the less you know?  I think it's something that we shouldn't be afraid of embracing, particularly when we have been taught to value knowledge.

And some things are the way they are
And words just can't explain

What's important about knowing things these days?  Does it help get to where we need to be?  I guess it does to some degree, but most of the time we spend time exploring solutions, reaching towards answers that aren't easily found.  I don't feel that I need to see or hear about people anymore than I used to.  Think about it, the less we are open to what is to come, the less we are able to accept what comes with the fortitude that is required to withstand challenges and trials.  

And it feels like now
And it feels like always
And it feels like coming home. . . 

I hope that whatever you are going through in your life, that you will be able to appreciate what you have.  I hope that you will be able to feel what it is that you are feeling now, that you feel more at home than you ever needed, if you need it.  I hope that you can see what I see, because I am learning that even through it all, in spite of it all and despite it all, I am grateful that to know that I never saw blue like that. . . 

Sunday, 20 March 2016

Whistle down the wind. . .

Whistle down the wind
Let your voices carry
Drown out all the rain
Light a patch of darkness
Treacherous and scary

I don't really know how to whistle.  I've tried and failed on many occasions growing up so it's something I've been quite comfortable in accepting.  I guess it all comes down to technique but also if you're a natural whistler, then you're able to work on including some other embellishments to enhance your whistling.  When you have patches of darkness in your life that are treacherous and scary, do you know how to light them up?  Do you have the necessary tools to light up those patches of darkness and if you don't, are you able to access those tools when you need them?

Howl at the stars
Whisper when you're sleepy
I'll be there to hold you
I'll be there to stop
The chills and all the weeping

When you are vulnerable and in your weakest state, do you have the right support system around you?  Do you know who to turn to when you need someone to just hold you and not even have to say anything?  It may be difficult for you to know how to support your friends when they are going through some treacherous and scary times.  You want to be able to be a supportive friend and not what to say and do to make those dark patches in their lives go away, to try and be a beacon of light when they find themselves lingering in those dark patches.  Have you seen what's it like to see your friends go through such pain?  You might look in the mirror at yourself from time to time and notice yourself in some dark patches, or you just stop looking in mirrors and take less selfies because you don't like the look of yourself these days.

Make it clear and strong
So the whole night long
Every signal that you send
Until the very end
I will not abandon you my precious friend

It is always easier to be there for someone else, rather than be there for yourself.  I think as a society, I'm not talking about a specific one here, I'm just writing out loud I guess, but I am thinking about how we as humans can support each other better and be aware of the signals that we put out.  Granted there are genuine loving people who care about the welfare of others much more clearly than they do themselves, but there are probably just as equal amount of other people who don't care about the welfare of others but instead are motivated by other things that must come to the detriment of others.

So try and stand the tide
Then you'll raise a banner
Send a flare up in the sky
Try to burn a torch
And try to build a bonfire

What motivates you to seek help and send a flare up in the sky?  When do we know when the right time is to ask for help?  How do we know when we need to be rescued?  When can you seek a very public rescue for your private pain?  When I think of bonfires I can recall sitting around them with groups of people who were happy to let their fears and woes burn into the night with those bonfires, those fears and woes written on pieces of wood that we threw into the fire.  We would watch those pieces of wood burn, convert into embers that flickered upwards towards the night sky and feel that sense of relief and peace of mind that seemed to crackle in its comforting rhythm.  Do you have such a group of people in your life that you can surround yourself with?

Every signal that you send
Until the very end
I'm there

I am definitely grateful to all of my friends and family who have been there for me over so very many different points of my life and I'm sure you feel the same about your own life, about your own troubles that you have in your life.  I think at times the most comforting things I have experienced, that have restored my faith in humanity have occurred when I've been confronted with random acts of kindness, with small surprises I never expected or grand gestures that have been accompanied with tears of joy.  I guess as much as I can, I just want to be there for people as much as I can.  I just want people to know I can be there for them too :-)

So whistle down the wind
For I have always been
Right there
oh yeah. . . 

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Lovesong. . .

This blog post is dedicated to everyone who I love and who love me in return, to everyone who needs love or wants love but wouldn't know what love looked like even if it slapped them. . .hard :-)

People sometimes ask me about when I write, who do I write about, as they're interested in knowing if I am writing about a specific person.  I think sometimes I write about several different people but the way it comes out in the piece, it sounds like I'm writing extensively about one person.  This song is a track by The Cure but I prefer Adele's softer rendition.

Whenever I'm alone with you
You make me feel like I am free again
Whenever I'm alone with you
You make me feel like I am whole again

I think it's important to spend time alone with someone.  There is something chemical that happens when people connect - on whichever level you prefer or naturally inclined to.  It's also important to connect with someone who helps you feel free, who makes you feel whole when you might constantly surrounded by people who make you feel trapped or less than complete.  If at all possible, avoid having contact with these types of people.

Whenever I'm alone with you
You make me feel like I am young again
Whenever I'm alone with you
You make me feel like I am fun again

Of course there is the flip side.  What if someone feels young with you, or feels like they are fun again because of you?  It may come as a surprise to you that might mean the world to someone.  Unless you're a mindreader or they have the confidence to tell you or don't realise how unfiltered they sound telling you about how you make them feel and the effect you have on them - that's always pretty cool to hear.  I love hanging out with people who make me feel young and who make me forget the dramas that threaten to control my life.  Instead I choose to connect with those who are able to think about life the same way I do.

However far away I will always love you
However long I stay I will always love you
Whatever words I say I will always love you
I will always love you

Do you tell the people you need to, how much they mean to you?  Do you sometimes find it difficult to be free with your feelings and let them know how important you are to them?  That they don't feel like they can learn more new things about themselves unless you tell them what they need to hear, like they are seeking some form of approval from you?  I think it's important to look in the mirror and talk to yourself and say kinds words to yourself.  We should stop seeking approval from others, but find the courage to love ourselves.  We can't possibly love others in really meaningful ways, if we aren't in love with us first.

Whenever I'm alone with you
You make me feel like I am free again
Whenever I'm alone with you
You make me feel like I am clean again

When someone can make you feel clean again, then you know that you have a very deep spiritual connection with that person.  When you no longer feel judged and no longer feel less than yourself, you feel less than great because others want you to be weak and feel that way - then you only have yourself to blame for those negative emotions, but you let your weakened state accept the things about you that are untrue.  I have talked before in previous blog posts about self esteem and how we need to build that up for ourselves.  Building self esteem is critically important and the funny thing about it - it's something that you must learn to do on your own, nobody can teach you how to believe in you - because you have to action that for yourself, that's why it's called self esteem - it's about the esteem that you have of yourself.  I can't give you that.  Nobody can. All we can do is hold you in high esteem when you exude confidence by fostering your own self esteem.  Sounds simple doesn't it?

However far away I will always love you
However long I stay I will always love you
Whatever words I say I will always love you
I will always love you

The only distance I can think about being so far away is being separated from those who now dwell in another world.  I can feel remnants of them that remain in this world when I am alone.  So I think for the most part, I can focus really hard on the spiritual remnants of those who linger behind in places and things and even people who echo those sentiments that hark back to those I have loved and have now left me.  When I think about how long I have stayed with people before I have moved on in my life, has been because I have felt the courage to leave them, if they didn't leave me first, through no fault of their own, without any intentional design and or machination of the human mind.

However far away I will always love you
However long I stay I will always love you
Whatever words I say I will always love you
I will always love you

Throughout our lifetimes we will always love people that we must eventually leave or will eventually leave us.  We cannot stay and stray, hoping to linger as long as possible until they disappear, just because we wanted to catch one last glimpse of them before a final goodbye.

When I think about the words I have said or the words that have been said to me - I always remember the lines that didn't seem to mean much at the time, but now those words torment me and torture me in the recesses of my mind, coming out to play and ring in my ears when I hear something or someone that once again triggers those words, like a broken record that manages to find its way to the jukebox of experience that I think doesn't work anymore, but now I know, works when it needs to.

I hope that how love plays out in your life, whether you are open to it or not, whether you have stumbled over it and almost lost it forever, whether people are trying to encourage you to move on with a new love when you actually can't afford to focus on someone else's needs other than your own or whether you are meant to be in love but find yourself in love with another - all of these are different scenes of love that must be played out because we are meant to learn about love because whatever words I say I will always love you, I will always love you. . . 

Saturday, 12 March 2016

When we were young. . .

Everybody loves the things you do
From the way you talk
To the way you move
Everybody here is watching you
Cause you feel like home
You're like a dream come true

When you return home, do you feel like you're actually coming home?  There will be people that follow your every movement, your every appearance and wonder what you're doing and how things are panning out and whether you still resemble the hometown spirit that you seemed to exude as a child with everybody else.  I guess this must be how celebrities feel when they return home, do they remember where they've come from?  Their humble beginnings before they got a big break?  Do you think about your past and how you used to be back then?

But if by chance you're here alone
Can I have a moment?
Before I go?
'Cause I've been by myself all night long
Hoping you're someone I used to know

If I reflect I can recall some moments when I've come across someone from my childhood who I shared many wonderful memories of learning together, and those memories make me smile and keep me entertained when I am alone.  We can often reach out to people in our past to remind us about how good they made us feel, to remind us about happier or simpler times before things got too complicated and we can't seem to make any head or tail about how seemingly complicated our life has become.  All we have to hold onto in that instance is hope, the hope that time doesn't change people too much that they don't see you as an embarrassment or a symbol of when they thought they were a nobody.

You look like a movie
You sound like a song
My God
This reminds me, of when we were young

Have you been enthralled by someone in your past?  That moment when you realised that you were enchanted by someone or maybe people were enchanted by you?  It can be hard to hear sometimes when you come across someone from your past and they can recall what you were like when you were young, when you were young together.  They can either recall your immaturity and signal times that you would love to forget, or they can recall times when you displayed great strength and character that you associate with yourself now and you think wow, I was like that even back then.  I always think it's important to connect with people from your past so that you can see how much you have grown, you can see how much they have grown, and whether you can continue this connection so that you can grow together.

Let me photograph you in this light
In case it is the last time
That we might be exactly like we were
Before we realised
We were sad of getting old
It made us restless
It was just like a movie
It was just like a song

I hate those moments when you approach somebody from your past and they pretend not to know you.  I don't think you should be mad about it though.  People's priorities have changed.  You might have changed a lot when you were at grade school.  I think about a famous example on social media when a sentencing judge in America was addressing an prisoner and she recognised him from when they were in school together.  He broke down in the court and cried.  I think when we grow up we forget about all of the dreams that we had as children.  We let life wash over us and mix us up with some interesting if not completely out-of-whack situations that can break us or make us.

I was so scared to face my fears
'Cause nobody told me that you'd be here
And I swore you moved overseas
That's what you said, when you left me

I hope that you aren't scared to face your fears.  The thing about being afraid is that it eats away at you if you let it, like it's some kind of tissue eating disease that can threaten to consume you (literally) from the inside out.  There will be that initial shock of seeing someone from your past though, particularly when you have had no warning, you might have parted on bad terms and things were awkward then and now you see each other in the flesh again and you don't know what to say or do.  How would you break the ice again?  Is it worth breaking that ice?  Would you leave well enough alone?

It's hard to win me back 
Everything just takes me back
To when you were there
To when you were there
And a part of me keeps holding on
Just in case it hasn't gone
I guess I care
Do you still care?

I have found that the secret to happiness in life is to remember times when you were happy and use the feelings of happiness from those times, and transfer this into your current life situation.  We have this nasty habit as humans to not be content or satisfied with our lives, because we always want something more or something better.  The secret to happiness is to well, just be happy.  Choose happiness above all else and if you are in the hardest and most turbulent part of your life right now, hang on to hope that you will get through.

Let me photograph you in this light
In case it is the last time
That we might be exactly like we were
Before we realised
We were sad of getting old
It made us restless
I'm so mad we're getting old
It makes me reckless
It was just like a movie
It was just like a song
When we were young

I am a firm believer that we are in stages of turmoil because we are meant to learn lessons from these difficult and challenging times.  Even though it hurts and we assume that things get worse as we get older, but need not worry about being restless or act out by being reckless because we think we are losing our youth, we are in fact coming into our own and becoming who we were born to be, signalled by all of the happy times we experienced, signalled by the good times now and what's around the corner transferred from the feelgood days of when we were young. . . 

Friday, 11 March 2016

I don't know how to love him. . .

I don't know how to love him
What to do, how to move him
I've been changed, yes really changed
In these past few days, when I've seen myself
I seem like someone else

Sometimes you can be unsure about why you come across people, or the fact that people come into your life without any sufficient reason or easily understood purpose.  I think that's what serendipitous moments or fate, destiny, call it what you will, seems to throw at you when you least expect.  Do you actively reflect about the connections, friendships and relationships that you have in your life?  I think it's really important for you to consider these, because they are about as tenuous as a toothpick keeping a window open.  I find it fascinating when you struggle to figure someone out, not knowing how or why they think the way they do.  It can be the difference between awkward or comfortable silences - one finds you a nervous wreck while the other wraps you up like a warm woollen blanket.

I don't know how to take this
I don't know why he moves me
He's just a man, he's just a man
And I've had so many men before
In very many ways
He's just one more

What sets people apart in your mind?  Do you genuinely want to label or put a name on what makes people gravitate towards you or alternatively speak ill of you?  When you are confronted with questions about why you are connected, you will come to understand that it's more to do with people trying to understand a rapport or a bond of kindred spirits that defy explanation.  When you are confronted with questions about why you are disconnected, you will come to understand that it's more to with people trying to denigrate or cast aspersions on what they can't explain about you, the undefinability that seems to hang heavy in the air that nobody can see, but everybody can definitely feel.

Should I bring him down?
Should I scream and shout?
Should I speak of love,
Let my feelings out?
I never thought I'd come to this
What's it all about?

How sure and certain are you about yourself?  Do you trust your thought process, your actions and where you intend to end up?  Do you understand yourself well enough to know what triggers good or bad decision making?  Do you understand yourself well enough to know what influences good or bad decision making in others around you?  How do we cope with not knowing how to do things and faking it until we make it?  I used to think that indecision was a horrible state to find yourself in, but I quickly realised that it's ok to be lost, feel lost, until you learn how to figure things out, fly by the seat of your pants and learn things the hard way, the long way, until you find your way.

Don't you think it's rather funny
I should be in this position
I'm the one who's always been
So calm, so cool, no lover's fool
Running every show
He scares me so

It's ok to be scared.  I just don't think that you need to let your fear consume you.  It can be a dangerous position to be in when you allow yourself to be scared and fearful in this way - you should probably spend some time knowing how fear manifests itself in you, what triggers it but more importantly how you can allow yourself to overcome it.  How can you push past your fear?  Name what you are scared of, push past it and let the fear die that painful death that it should.

I never thought I'd come to this
What's it all about?

There's that plateau we reach when we can't decide whether we're coming or going.  How do we cope with this in our hectic lives, when we're rushing around being all busy and not taking the time to explore the openness of that plateau, that the barrenness of it may be exactly where you need to be to take some time out and start feeling about things and people rather than filling your head space thinking about it all the time.  What's the "it" anyway?

Yet if he said he loved me
I'd be lost, I'd be frightened
I couldn't cope, just couldn't cope
I'd turn my head, I'd back away
I wouldn't want to know
He scares me so
I want him so
I love him so. . . 

I hope that once you allow the fear to subside, that you will be able to figure out how you are meant to love others.  When someone tells you that they care for you and have labelled you as something special in their life, then accept it.  We can often read too much into things, misconstrue something, get signals wrong, and not understand what we're feeling inside when we spend time with people.  All of those unknown variables, I tend to think it's ok to feel those things.  We are in a rush to try and figure things out, to set our minds at ease, when in fact, all we need to do is spend the time trying to understand what we look like and feel when we stumble across unexpected junctures or junctions in our life journeys.  I guess one thing I can be certain of is I don't know how to love him. . . 

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Scar. . .

He left a card, a bar of soap and a scrubbing brush next to a note
That said "use these down to your bones"
And before I knew I had shiny skin and it felt easy being clean like him
I thought "this one knows better than I do"
A triangle trying to squeeze through a circle
He tried to cut me so I could fit

It's important to surround yourself with people who are able to support you in whatever endeavour you are pursuing.  It's also important to be able to step back sometimes and take stock of what it is that you're doing when you're with others - are you constantly comparing yourself to them because they seem infinitely more put together than you are?  I think there is some real danger when you try to be like others, trying to shove yourself through the motions or shapes that don't fit you, because you aren't meant to fit in that way, but really value the differences that you bring to your connections, friendships and relationships.

And doesn't that sound familiar? Doesn't that hit too close to home?
Doesn't that make you shiver; the way things could've gone?
And doesn't it feel peculiar when everyone wants a little more?
And so that I do remember to never go that far
Could you leave me with a scar

We've talked about hindsight in so many previous blogposts that I've lost count.  The thing about growing up and becoming an adult is that we never stop learning about ourselves, as we shouldn't ever stop learning because our environment (yes even our eroding environment at the worst of times) and the company we keep and even the strangers we expose ourselves to - the big entire mess has the potential to leave you with a scar as evidence of your follies (or thinly disguised wisdom if you can see beyond the follies to the real lesson).

So the next one came with a bag of treats, she smelled like sugar and spoke like the sea
And she told me don't trust them, trust me
Then she pulled at my stitches one by one, looked at my insides 
clicking her tongue and said "This will all have to come undone"
A triangle trying to squeeze through a circle
She tried to blunt me so I could fit

Have you thought about who you are able to trust?  You might like to see yourself as a very trustworthy person who has integrity and is able to really assist others, make other people feel like better people and become an asset in their lives rather than an ass.  When do you decide that as much as you have started building yourself up, that you might actually, after a long extensive examination in the mirror, actually come to realise that you need to come undone; that you might need to start again and unpick those stitches that you thought were required in order to help you heal, but hey, maybe it's time to bleed a little again, just so that you can let that wound heal faster.  How many times do we find ourselves trying to conform to other people's shapes?  Do you find it an exhausting exercise?  Is it even a useful experience?  How should we move forward, move ahead and ensure that we become better informed about how we approach those different shapes the next time we are forced to be squeezed through said shapes?

I think I just realised just in time, although my old self was hard to find 
You can bathe me in your finest wine but I'll never give you mine
'Cos I'm a little bit tired of fearing that I'll be the bad fruit nobody buys
Tell me, did you think we'd all dream the same?

You know what, you don't need to give anybody any of your wine.  They are more than welcome to bathe you in their wine, if they think it can entice you to give up yours.  But you don't have to do that.  When we see ourselves as bad fruit, the bad apple perhaps that might spoil the bunch, how will we be able to move forward and fulfil what we need to complete, on our pathway to eventually celebrate the greatness that has been inside us all the time?  I guess it's to celebrate what's within us when all we are able to see are our scars on the outside.  What dreams do you hold that you have yet to make reality?  When you look at your scars, do they hold you back from what you need to do?  When you look at certain people do you get annoyed with yourself because you think that you could've made better decisions that would've taken you somewhere different?  Somewhere better than your current situation?

And doesn't that sound familiar? Doesn't that hit too close to home?
Doesn't that make you shiver; the way things could've gone?
And doesn't it feel peculiar when everyone wants a little more?
And so that I do remember to never go that far
Could you leave me with a scar. . . 

We can all dodge bullets if we concentrate hard enough, but that would be too easy wouldn't it?  We can also choose to ignore our intuition and carry on making poor decisions that can cause scars to appear, particularly too when people are continually trying to get and more of you, despite the fatigue.

So I guess you could leave me a scar, but hey, I can handle it.
My strength that comes from within, the will to survive and triumph over adversity, means that even if the scar exists, it will soon fade in the passing of time because the pain only lasts as long as the wound is open.

There's something to be said about being happy and joyous as a result of the passion that you are able to bring to your work, but more importantly, you can already start to see that if you do go too far, that you are able to remember that scars, even though they are an ugly reminder of some pain that you have experienced, they soon heal :-)

Monday, 7 March 2016

I know you know. . .

I've written about Esperanza Spalding in a previous blog post (see Fall in).  I have great respect for performers who can play instruments while singing at the same time.  I think the most difficult instruments to be able to play and sing together in this way is definitely the bass and the drums.  I've had the great fortune of being able to watch many musicians live who can do this effortlessly.  It takes great skill, effort and constant practice to be able to do that.  I play piano and sing (not as often as I should) but people think that is difficult to do.  I don't think it's as difficult as with bass and drums.  I think this is because at least with the piano, you can play some melodic motifs that are similar to the vocal, whereas with the bass and drums - it's all purely rhythm and for the most part, this goes against what the voice is doing.  I'm not saying it's entirely impossible - it just takes work.  But I know you know.

The way you look at me when you think I'm not looking, tells me
Your heart's a sleeping giant worn out by someone you loved before me
I see you're scared I'm unconvinced by what I've tried to say
That I am yours and that nothing will take me away

Listening to jazz in this way brings back so many memories of playing jazz in high school.  There's something about the way the rhythm, harmonic accompaniment and melodic line weaves its magic around me that gets me every time.  It's a perfect backdrop to the mood of the lyrics, the mystery of the situation and how you're unsure just as the unsettling bass line which is meant to keep you off balance and a little bit off centre - but it feels good doing that, so why change it right?  I wonder if you have the same confidence that the singer possesses, especially when you can name or label something faster than the other person who seems to be moving from the outskirts or fringes of your life and making his or her way closer to your epicentre.  Why epicentre?  Because I know you know.

The way you always call me with some question, and every time
Try to pretend that you didn't just call me just 'cause I was on your mind
Too soon for you to say out loud but I know
You love me and though we don't say, it already shows

Has that happened to you?  When someone has called you with some question and you've sat there thinking - what is this question really about?  You kind of know but you don't say anything, instead you consider the question and think about an appropriate response to give.  It's ok to love in whatever way possible - the kind of love that doesn't exist by society's standards and it shouldn't either.  Why conform to something that you don't subscribe or ascribe to?

You already know but I'll sing it again
I love you babe and nothing will take me away
I know that you know but I'll sing it again
I love you babe and nothing will take me away

This is the chorus and I just love how hectic and intense it sounds in comparison to the easy flow of the verses.  I wonder if this was deliberate on the part of Esperanza to show us that even though the chorus is meant to be the hook that everyone remembers and is drawn to, it isn't necessarily meant to be smooth sailing. The melody line makes me smile because I think about it taking me away, not anywhere far, just enjoying the ride and not really worrying about where things take you.  It seems tricky to articulate but I know you know.

I wait for you to open up, but it's not a bore
You're just what I've been looking for, why do you keep your head in the sand?
Whoever you loved before me, that ran's nothing like me, nothing like me, nothing like me

In this bridge section at 1:39, you get a sense of the dream like state, with more intensity in the drums to highlight the change in the scene, wrapped up by the piano solo at the end.  I love the way in which the piano accents the syncopation of the song with its harmonic accompaniment before eventually coming to a close with the bass exploring the fuller extent of its range and rhythmic diversity.  When you come across someone who is hard to get to know or doesn't really seem like they're not bringing everything to the surface, that they're in fact keeping their head in the sand - are you equipped to bring them out?  Have they asked you why you're so different yet you can understand them?  You probably shrug your shoulders and smile and when they ask you repeatedly, yet refuse to answer in a satisfactory manner, you know they're thinking in their heads - I know you know.

The way you look at me when you think I'm not looking
The way you call me up just to see what's cooking
The way you look at me when you think I'm not looking
I look at you that way too you just don't know that I do

You know when people look at you or call you or have your voice in the back of their mind and know that you would think something is funny if they relayed back to you - they are just things that happen and things that either make you smile, laugh or cry.  There's something enigmatic about knowing things about each other but you can't explain it.  I know some people would need to have the answers and need to be able to understand why things are.  Do you need to know what's cooking?  Are you the one doing the looking?  Do you look that way but they are oblivious?  Whatever the case may be, just enjoy life, connect as often as possible with whoever as much as possible as we all eventually come to realise that, despite your protestations, I know you know.

I know that you know
You already know. . . 

Everything I own. . .

You sheltered me from harm
Kept me warm, kept me warm
You gave my life to me
Set me free, set me free
The finest years I ever knew
Were all the years I had with you

With the change of season (it's Autumn/Fall here in Aotearoa), it always brings with it the changes that come in one's life.  You remember for a glimpse, for a moment in time, the memories that were ensconced in each season.  Have you been reminiscing lately?  The finest years you will ever know may well have been with someone that you are no longer with.  We will always appreciate how good we had it during those times, when we felt warm, felt sheltered but didn't even realise it at the time.

You taught me how to love
What it's of, what it's of
You never said too much
But still you showed the way
And I knew from watching you
Nobody else could ever know
The part of me that can't let go

There's something that can be said for people who can teach you things by not saying much at all.  Have you been in a relationship or had a connection with someone who didn't really verbally communicate with you because they relied on you doing all the talking, they relied on you being able to sense what was going on inside them and being in tune with them?  Do you pay attention to what's going on around you?  Do people pay enough attention to what's going on with you?  Do we show each other the way?

Is there someone you know
You're loving them so
But taking them all for granted
You may lose them one day
Someone takes them away
And they don't hear the words that you long to say

I guess we need to think about how much we really care for others.  We can't afford to be quiet and not say what we really want to say.  It is a chance we must be prepared to take when we must disclose our feelings to people, even when we run the risk of not being accepted, when we run the risk of being rejected, we must still be prepared to go there and learn about not being accepted and being rejected; not be mad at that but just expect ourselves to grow in our knowing of ourselves.  Are you secure in the knowledge that the one you love will be there, even when you take them for granted?

I would give anything I own
Give up my life, my heart, my home
I would give everything I own
Just to have you back again
Just to have you once again. . . 

I hope that you understand how important it is to cherish and treasure who you are with.  This is important because we can't give everything to get someone back.  But I guess if you're prepared to give up those things - your life, your heart and your home, you should really be thinking about sacrificing those things when that someone is there with you - so that you don't have to worry about having them again, even just to have you once again. . .