This is ported over my MySpace blog from mid-October. But I figure, if we all still have souls, it remains relevant. If some of us have become soulless since then, perhaps even more so!
I was talking to one of my new roommates the other night and he mentioned finding the song of your soul. You know, that moment where, in the midst of the shambles of ill-made choices and fears and doubts and life in general, you stumble across that thing that you really groove to. The light breaks through the darkness, however briefly, bringing you back to who you really are and what you really want.
The song of his soul was awakened in this case by an episode of a prison drama narrated with show tunes, but that’s beside the point. I knew instantly knew what he meant. This weekend I was lucky enough to have a moment where I stumbled across the song of my soul.
On Saturday I went to Lit Crawl, the closing event of the annual Litquake festival. The basic idea is that over the course of three hours, readings occur in thirty-five venues across an eight-block strip of the Mission District. You drift from one to another, like a pub-crawl except that you imbibe words along the way. I found myself having an attack of the heebie-jeebies while drifting. Not reading anywhere myself brought up fears of being a literary failure. A friend who was supposed to go with me had flaked at the last minute, and going around by myself brought up feelings of being a lonesome loser (it really may be time to start dating again soon). Being jostled in sweaty, crowded bars made me feel like I was being jostled in sweaty, crowded bars.
In the midst of this charming bouquet of emotions, I squeezed myself into a corner near the stage in Amnesia for “The Beat on the Page”, a reading by local music writers. As Katy St. Clair read her tale on being propositioned by 81 year-old country/bluegrass legend Charlie Louvin (it’s on her MySpace blog, I recommend checking it out), my cares began to fall away. By the time Wendy Farina (excellent musician and writer and also an eminently MySpacable personage) took the stage to perform her piece about a fifty-year-old woman who has just joined a punk band as a drummer and acquired Jimi Hendrix as a dream music spirit guide, my soul was positively humming.
These were my people. This is what makes my muse beat her little wings and wake me up at inconvenient hours to start writing. This is the song of my soul. And when I hear it I don’t want to be anyone else, anywhere else than me, right here, right now.
I know you know what I mean, because you have a song too. And so, my tens of readers, I invite you to write in and tell me about the song of your soul…