Back in the CompuServe days, I would take the team to lunch quite often at a place called Windchimes. Nothing fancy. We’d lunch and learn. Nothing formal. Upon returning to our place of work I’d make some unlucky soul sit in my car and listen to a song. I’d turn the car off and tell them to lock in and extrapolate the lyrics to our work and life. I’m sure they thought this was beyond weird. One of my favorite artists was a dude about my age named John Mellencamp. He was an Indiana boy and I could relate to his small town roots and seemingly easy way.
He’s gotten more soulful and thoughtful as age has humbled him, you know. I have two new favorites of his. One is titled A Brand New Song. Check it out. It’s all about the power of authentic OPUS. Another is titled Longest Days. This one is depressing and I love it. John begins this song by reminding the listener that life is short even in the longest days. He’s trying to wake us up. Damn.
He continues with a refrain we all eventually realize – It seems like a long time ago I was where I was supposed to be. No end to what I could dream. Walked like a hero. Everyone called out my name. Death was a mystery. I was too busy killing it, you know. But nothing lasts forever. Best efforts don’t always pay. Some time you get sick and you don’t get better. You pretend not to notice that everything has changed. Your looks and friends are gone but you act the same. Deep down you know you got no flame. Who knows then which way to go?
John finishes it off by reminding us all that eventually all we got is a rear view mirror. Someday you too will be done. All you’ll have will be reflections of where you’ve been. So what does the normal human do? Face the brutal facts of reality? Nope. Keep singing a brand new song? Nope, not that either. Most simply take up residence in denial. Talk about depressing.
Life is short even in its longest days. You and I will not be here forever. Are you singing your song and living by design or default? Fear of death or love of life? Or are you living in denial and not thinking about such things. Maybe you need to listen to a little Mellencamp and reflect while you still have the gift of time and a sound mind. Maybe you ought to put on A Brand New Song and Longest days, get a copy of the lyrics, and then write what you’re feeling. You know sometimes it’s unhealthy not to slow down and learn by looking back. Sometimes, in fact, it’s imperative to slow down, friend. I mean c’mon man, you know there’s nothing waiting for you up there anyway…
Live hard. LOVE harder…
1 thought on “Longest days…”
Beautiful and painful.
As it should be.