Song Lyric Sunday — Fear

To be honest, when Helen Vahdati announced this week’s Song Lyric Sunday theme is “fear,” my first thought was “more cowbell!” I really tried to find some song other than Blue Oyster Cult’s “Don’t Fear the Reaper,” but finally admitting defeat, I went to You Tube to find an appropriate video. Once there, the strangest thing happened. I found another Blue Oyster Cult song I liked better: “Nosferatu,” BOC’s homage to the 1920s German film of the same name. The cool thing was that the best videos paired the song with footage from the film. Here’s one of them:

 

 

Nosferatu

Deep in the heart of Germany
Lucy clutched her breast in fear
She heard the beat of her lover’s heart
For weeks she raved in dreams he appeared
From far Transylvania

Only a woman can break his spell
Pure in heart who will offer herself
To Nosferatu

This ship pulled in without a sound
The faithful captain long since cold
He kept his log till the bloody end
Last entry read “Rats in the hold.
My crew is dead, I fear the plague”

Only a woman can break his spell
Pure in heart who will offer hefself
To Nosferatu

Mortal terror reigned
Sickness now then horrible death
Only Lucy knew the truth
And at her window
Nosferatu

So chaste so calm, she gave herself
To the pleasure of her dreaded master
He sucked the precious drops of life
Throughout the long and cold dark night

One last goodbye, he was blinded by love
One last goodbye, he was blinded by love
Blinded by love

He screamed with fear, he’d stayed too long in her room
The morning sun had come too soon
The spell was broken with a kiss of doom
He vanished into dust, left her all alone

Only a woman can break his spell
Pure in heart, who will offer herself
To Nosferatu

Writer/s: DICKON JAMES HINCHLIFFE, DAVID LEONARD BOULTER, STUART ASHTON STAPLES, NEIL JOSEPH STEVEN FRASER, MARK ANTHONY STEPHEN COLWILL, ALISTAIR MACAULAY
Publisher: Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group
Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

And because I know you want to see it, here’s the Saturday Night Live cowbell skit:

 

Liebster Award Nomination

aMany thanks to Harley Kallisti, who has honored me by nomination for the 2018 Liebster Award.  Harley’s blog Passion and Chaos is a wonderful mix of her drawings, snippets of fiction that will become a novel she has been working on since grade school, and posts about her real life. She has a gift for story-telling; check out her blog!

The Leibster Award itself is more than an honorific given by one blogger to another. It has an actual prize awarded by The Global Aussie on December 31! You can learn more about it on his site, which is truly global, by the way, as it’s primarily devoted to travel.

Honored as I am to have received this nomination, I’m afraid I’m going to have to decline. I’ve spent hours today trying to answer 11 questions and come up with 10 random facts about myself that I’d be willing to share. These rules and requirements are just too cumbersome and invasive for me. I’m not a “peel the onion layers” type of person. Not to mention having to nominate between 5 and 11 other bloggers. So, thank you for the honor, but no.

Magic Everywhere!

Time was, magic was feared as the embodiment of evil. Feared, that is, until conventional wisdom somehow downgraded it to frivolity, all card tricks and smoke and mirrors. Either way, no self-respecting person would admit to seriously believing. So, what changed? Magic has been pushing itself into the zeitgeist for a few years now, at least since 1997 when Harry Potter burst onto millions of pages and, subsequently, movie screens. If Harry Potter is responsible for the resurgence of magic, that’s more a testament to the magic of J. K. Rowling’s pen than to the perceived power of magical incantations.

I’ve always considered myself to be a non-believer. Haven’t even read Harry Potter. Of course, I would have to have been living under a rock not to have Harry Potter and his magic somewhere near the forefront of my consciousness. I mean, four years ago, I even named my new kitten “Potter”! That doesn’t necessarily make me a believer in magic. Admittedly, I do love fantasy, however. Stories full of dragons, fairies, and elves have long been my secret pleasure. Part of it is a deep, wistful longing that magic in a supernatural sense actually exists. That longing spars with the comparably deep certainty that it doesn’t.

If it’s not real, then WHY is magic everywhere? Not abracadabra, hocus pocus, rabbits pulled out of hats, illusionary magic. I mean literally the word “magic.” Has it always been there?  As I’ve said, magic has been growing in popular culture for a while. Years. But just over the past few months I’ve been seeing the word “magic” increasingly often. I’m not looking for it, but the universe seems to be sending it.

You might think I’m crazy (superfluous Cars reference), but, like many other people, I believe the universe (or loved ones in the afterlife or God, if you prefer) sends messages. My sister-in-law, for instance, often finds heart-shaped stones and beach glass that she believes are messages from my late niece. Other people see butterflies, dragonflies, hummingbirds, rainbows, or some other sign that their loved-one’s spirit still lingers. I, myself, see multiple 11s everywhere that I don’t remember seeing until after my husband passed away over five years ago.

When I first began pondering the apparent resurgence of magic as a concept, I came to realize magic has been a background thread in my life since at least high school, when my boyfriend and I considered Jay and the Americans’ “This Magic Moment” to be our song. But I’ve only started seeing “magic” multiple times per day fairly recently. And not just in logical contexts, like when I’m listening to The Cars and their song “Magic” comes up on my playlist. No, I mean out of the blue references, like when I’m researching treason and stumble upon a book called “Magic as a Political Crime.” Or when I get an emailed ad from a tee shirt store, and the ad features a shirt saying “Black Moms are Magical.”  Or when researching morticians for a possible upcoming blog post, Parke’s Magic Valley Funeral Home pops up.

Why is this happening? What message, exactly, is the universe sending?

 

Although I’ve been trying capture my thoughts about magic for weeks now, the impetus to finish this draft comes from Linda G. Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt “-ic or -ical.” So, giving credit where credit due, even if my technique isn’t on point.

As a bonus, here’s Jay and the Americans’ “This Magic Moment” (from WABCRADIO77’s You Tube account because that’s what we were listening to at the time):

Aretha Franklin Remembered

Aretha Franklin may be called the Queen of Soul, but she could just as easily be called the Queen of Song. Her repertoire covered everything. Gospel, R&B, soul, country, jazz, standards, pop, opera  — you name it, she sang it. She is matched only by Stevie Wonder in having 20 number one hits on the R&B charts. From her first in 1967, “I Never Loved A Man”, to her last 1985, “Freeway of Love”, she was at the top of her game. One song she covered, surprisingly, was “Let It Be” by Lennon and McCartney. In fact, her version was recorded and released before the Beatles’. Here it is:

 

Her first number one, “I Never Loved A Man”:

 

One more; her second number one, “Respect”:

Woodstock 1969 in Bethel, NY

Woodstock poster

Forty-nine years ago today, the Woodstock Music & Art Fair opened for “3 Days of Peace & Music.” Festival organizers sold over 100,000 tickets, and roughly half a million people actually showed up. I had BEGGED my parents to let me go with a friend who had a ticket, arguing that, two months’ shy of being 17 years old, I was mature enough to go. Unfortunately, they looked at it as I was only 16 years old, about to enter my senior year of high school, and still a child. I’ve never forgiven them.

Richie Havens was originally scheduled to be the fifth act, but when the first four performers couldn’t reach Yasgur’s farm because of the massive traffic jam, Havens became the first act to perform. He played for nearly three hours, “stalling” to give other musicians time to get there. Toward the end of his performance, he improvised a song that was later called “Freedom.” Enjoy:

Midnight Confessions

Sometimes, a prompt immediately inspires but probably not as the prompt originator anticipated. If the inspiration is music, there’s nothing that can redirect me to writing a six word story! Inspired by J.I. Rogers’ Six-Word Story Challenge prompt “confession,” here’s The Grass Roots’ 1968 hit “Midnight Confessions.”

 

Midnight Confessions

The sound of your footsteps
Telling me that you’re near
Your soft gentle motion, babe
It brings out a need in me that nobody hears, except

In my midnight confessions
When I tell all the world that I love you
In my midnight confessions
When I say all the things that I want to
I love you

But a little gold ring you wear on your hand makes me understand
There’s another before me, you’ll never be mine
I’m wasting my time

Staggering through the daytime
Your image on my mind
Passing so close beside you baby
Sometimes the feeling is so hard to hide, but

In my midnight confessions
When I tell all the world that I love you
In my midnight confessions
When I say all the things that I want to
I love you

Yes a little gold ring you wear on your hand makes me understand
There’s another before me, you’ll never be mine
I’m wasting my time

In my midnight confessions
When I tell all the world that I love you
In my midnight confessions
When I say all the things that I want to
Na na na na na na na na
Na na na na na na na na
Na na na na na na na na
Na na na na na na na na

Writer/s: LOU TERRY JOSIE
Publisher: Universal Music Publishing Group
Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Stream of Consciousness Saturday: Bodily Functions

For the better part of today, my brain has been working in the background, mulling over  Stream of Consciousness Saturday’s prompt “bodily function.”  To be honest, I guess I must be sort of prudish, because all I could think of was bodily functions that are usually not discussed in polite company. (Thank you, Emily Post. You probably don’t remember her. She was the original etiquette queen. Waaaay before Miss Manners came along. But I digress.) Despite my prudishness, my biggest laugh today was reading Fandango’s take on the subject on his This, That, & the Other blog. He chose farts. You’re laughing now, too, I bet. Go read it; you’ll laugh even harder.

Anyhooo, part of my mulling was about autonomous bodily functions, those you really have no control over. (That does NOT include farting, because, as everyone knows, you can hold that in, for quite a while with practice. Again, digressing.) I mean something like blinking. Since this is SoC, I think it’d be cheating to leave now and do a little research, but I think the main reason for blinking is to keep your eyeballs hydrated. Every blink spreads a layer of useful tears.

Did you ever have a blinking contest when you were a kid? Or when an adult with a kid? Or when a drunk adult? Like farts, you can control blinking for quite a while (not as long as farts). Sooner or later, however, you lose control and blink. In my experience it’s sooner rather than later. I think it’s partly because my eyes need a LOT of hydrating but also because once I start thinking I can’t do something, if it’s a rule or a law, I can’t stop thinking about doing it. Like telling someone not to think about elephants. (Try THAT.) My will power tends to break down pretty quickly. Plus, it’s just my nature to buck authority.

The blinking game ends when the first person blinks. That person lost the game. Although the game is usually for fun, sometimes the stakes are high. For instance, first person to blink has to run around the block, or load the dishwasher for a week, or become a hostile foreign leader’s lap dog/puppet/patsy.

Photo credit “The Staring Contest” by Anthony Letmon; found on Wikimedia Commons