I Heard a Song

ORIGIN UNKNOWN; BLAME MY MUSE

Actually, that’s a lie.  The initial inspiration for this piece of creative writing came a couple months ago when I was listening to the haunting song “Hallelujah,” written by Leonard Cohen.  Since that night I’ve been toying with a haunting song of my own, in written form, and then…..

Well, then my muse whispered to me, as she often does, and gave me the notes necessary to play this melody.

I hope you enjoy it!

THE OPENING CHORD

The opening chord truly sets the tone, four harmonious notes which hint of a darkness, played together, crashing down upon the listener, pinning him in place like some butterfly in a glass case collection for all the world to see.  But this butterfly is still alive, unable to break free from the chord, fully aware that pain is never transitory, suffering is sometimes optional, and life can, at times, be anything but beautiful.

A’s are beautiful by themselves, as are C’s, D’s, E’s, F’s, B’s, and G’s, notes from heaven, notes from the divine imagination, notes meant for the angels to sing and the birds to speak….but…..

Add a sharp at just the right moment and the colors are muted, their brilliance thwarted, their hue diminished and rendered objectionable, one sharp, an uplifting of a finger on the keyboard, a slight adjustment of digit on ivory, and a portent of sinister forces appears.

What is to follow, we ask in a whisper, our heart rate spiked, the endorphins kicking into high gear in their rush through our system, for surely no good can come from such an opening chord, and we crouch in anticipation, averting our eyes, wishing we could avert our ears……and then……

AND THEN…..

Playful fingers dance along the keyboard, frolicking, laughing, a lambs-on-a-summer day prancing across the meadow, no horror at all, no sudden off-with-their heads result but instead a melody to spring, a relax-all-is-well journey, a C chord to an F chord, a G and then back to C, light, even humorous, our averted eyes turn skyward in celebration, our breaths escape in relief.

It repeats, this refrain, then repeats again, playful sprites in the woods, the gods smiling down upon them, impish pixies bounding over brooks and bouquets of wildflowers, their flutes creating a musical backdrop for the natural orchestra, lighthearted and….but wait….what was that?  The sound of dissidence, ever so slight, almost an afterthought but no, it was intentional, a flat where flats fear to tread, and then……

STORMY WEATHER

The uninvited note fades and silence fills the room, a foreboding settles into place, we wait for the void to be filled but cringe, knowing, hope against hope, that one flat leaving us with thoughts of lost loves, lost loved ones, lost dreams, lost visions and directions, an unwanted cornucopia of melancholy spreads across our mind as we transport back to the shoulda, the coulda, and the woulda, like a malfunctioning projector machine-gunning images, forcing us to duck for fear one will stick and the sadness will be repeated.

And we know what is coming. We have, after all, lived it, and two counts later that opening chord repeats, followed by the nymphs dancing and the flat, in rapid succession now, the chord, the frolic, the flat, over and over and over again, our heads spinning, our wills weakened, we silently implore the maddened gods to bring it all to rest, give us peace, allow us some solace, this can’t be happening, this can’t be real, this can’t be……

But it is…..

The song of life.

2016 William D. Holland

 

William D. Holland

Really, when it comes right down to it, I'm just a human being.I could list this, and I could list that, and I could attempt to dazzle you all with the landscape shorthand of my life, but strip away all the b.s. and I'm just a human being who has tried to do more good than bad during my lifetime, and who firmly believes the most important thing in this world is love.

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William D. Holland

Really, when it comes right down to it, I'm just a human being. I could list this, and I could list that, and I could attempt to dazzle you all with the landscape shorthand of my life, but strip away all the b.s. and I'm just a human being who has tried to do more good than bad during my lifetime, and who firmly believes the most important thing in this world is love.

22 thoughts on “I Heard a Song

  • September 19, 2016 at 12:59 PM
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    Hi Bill! I love Leonard Cohen too. I think one of my most favorite songs of all time is “Dance Me to the End of Love” I even wrote a poem about it for Elizabeth Edwards (John Edward’s wife) who was dying of cancer and loved that song also. So sad and beautiful. I will check yours out too.
    Welcome!

    Reply
    • September 19, 2016 at 1:09 PM
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      Thank you Jackie…I, too, low that song “Dance me”….it’s nice to be here where creative freedom is appreciated and encouraged.

      Reply
  • September 19, 2016 at 3:21 PM
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    Bill…great to read your work. I love where you took your creativity. This piece opened my eyes to the different possibilities there are to express ourselves through our writing.

    Reply
  • September 19, 2016 at 3:34 PM
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    Jamie, thanks so much for the kind words. There are times I have no idea where I’m going with a written piece until I get there. This was one of those times.

    Reply
  • September 19, 2016 at 4:07 PM
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    Wow! Excellent, gotta love Cohen and that lovely muse of yours. Very creative. Enjoyed it on many levels.

    Best,
    Mel

    Reply
  • September 19, 2016 at 4:41 PM
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    Thank you very much, Mel! I don’t know where my muse comes from but I’m sure glad she visits from time to time.

    Reply
  • September 19, 2016 at 5:43 PM
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    They are indeed, Phyllis! Thank you!

    Reply
  • September 19, 2016 at 6:27 PM
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    Well done Bill, some lovely phrasing and imaginative expression from notes to words. Great imagery throughout. Kudos.

    Reply
  • September 20, 2016 at 8:11 AM
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    Very creative, Bill. Some of my poetry has been inspired by Leonard Cohen songs too. Well done.

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  • September 20, 2016 at 8:15 AM
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    Tony, I appreciate the kind words. Thank you!

    Reply
  • September 20, 2016 at 8:16 AM
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    Audrey, I’m trying to follow in your footsteps. I have a long way to go, but thank you!

    Reply
  • September 20, 2016 at 8:16 AM
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    Thank you very much, John!

    Reply
  • September 21, 2016 at 5:17 PM
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    Bravo and applause. This was wonderful. I love that song by Cohen. Now I am going to be imagining little lambs and nymphs dancing over my piano keys. Thank you for the vivid imagery.

    Reply
  • September 21, 2016 at 7:37 PM
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    Thank you so very much, Rasma! The thought of those nymphs dancing over your piano keys will have me smiling the rest of the week.

    Reply
  • October 11, 2016 at 8:52 AM
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    You haven’t written anything like this for a while. It has that ‘stream of consciousness’ feel to it; you write what you feel. This piece really shows how much you’ve grown as a writer.

    Reply
    • October 11, 2016 at 9:03 AM
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      Hi Zulma! You’re right of course. I got away from this and started doing it in my novels instead. In other words, I still do it, just a different medium. Thanks for that…I appreciate the affirmation. We all need it.

      Reply
  • November 15, 2017 at 7:00 PM
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    Greetings Bill. I am missing you on TCE, so came back to read one of your posts – making connection. I love this article and enjoyed reading it again. Great work indeed.

    Reply
    • November 16, 2017 at 7:51 AM
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      Thank you Phyllis! I really wish I had more time to post here and be active, but time is not a commodity I am in ample supply of these days. I promise to return as soon as I find my way.

      Reply

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