I can carry a tune. I may not be divalicious like Mariah, Aretha, Gladys, or Whitney but I can sing a song and put my spin on it. I realize that I don’t write about myself as a musician very much on this blog because I am, well, writing. And because writing is now my vocation as well as my passion, I write about the ups and downs of starting a writing business. Still, I’ve made music through all of this madness. Mostly in my room. Mostly when no one’s home. Mostly with the knowledge that no one will hear my songs.
I can carry a tune. I place my clumsy fingers on the piano and somehow manage to remember my years of lessons enough to compose a song that’s burdened my head and heart. I sing it for all it’s worth. I write it down. Every so often, I record it on my phone or computer. I let the song go wherever it’s meant to go, and I’m just left with this empty, relaxed peace. I’ve never taken drugs in my life (yes, seriously — another knockout of the artsy-fartsy stereotype), but I imagine this is why people smoke weed. They want to feel like this. I can say with certainty that the feeling is addictive.
I don’t carry my tune as often as I used to. Perhaps because this feeling is so addictive, and I get so high that I’m afraid. I sing and have hallucinations of stages and bands and hot lights and eager audiences who want to hear my songs. My words, my rhythms, nestled snugly in this tune that I carry. I love these trips so much that I hate them. After all, writers are supposed to hide behind their words. Their pages are masks.
Today, I carried my tune. I hummed it, hummed out my feelings, my frustrations. Then I found the words within the notes. Then I found my heart within the words. Then I sang the damn song. I got high, and those visions came rushing back. And I want another hit. I cannot get enough. It’s got me hooked.
I’m looking for my next tune to carry.