What Are You Looking For?

Translate

Mile Markers

Sunday, December 6, 2020

Kye's Music & Lyrics: "Farewell Transmission" by Songs: Ohia (The Magnolia Electric Co., 2003)




Songs: Ohia



~~*~~
 

The whole place is dark
Every light on this side of the town

Suddenly it all went down

Now we'll all be brothers of

The fossil fire of the sun

Now we will all be sisters of

The fossil blood of the moon

Someone must have set 'em up
Now they'll be working in the cold grey rock
Now they'll be working in the hot mill steam

Now they'll be working in the concrete
In the sirens and the silences now

All the great set up hearts
All at once start to beat

After tonight if you don't want this to be
A secret out of the past
I will resurrect it, I'll have a good go at it

I'll streak his blood across my beak
Dust my feathers with his ash

I can feel his ghost breathing down my back

I will try and know whatever I try
I will be gone but not forever
I will try and know whatever I try

I will be gone but not forever

Real truth about it is
No one gets it right
Real truth about it is

We're all supposed to try
There ain't no end to the sands

I've been trying to cross
The real truth about it is my kind of life's no better off

It's got the maps or if it's lost

We will try and know whatever we try
We will be gone but not forever
Come on let's try and know whatever we try

We will be gone but not forever

Real truth about it is there ain't no end to the desert I'll cross
I've really known it all along
Mama here comes midnight

With the dead moon in its jaws
Must be the big star about to fall

Mama here comes midnight
With the dead moon in its jaws

Must be the big star about to fall

Long dark blues
Will-o'-the-wisp
Long dark blues

The big star is falling
Long dark blues

Will-o'-the-wisp
The big star is falling

Long dark blues
Through the static and distance

Long dark blues
A farewell transmission

Long dark blues
Listen

Long dark blues
Listen

Long dark blues
Listen

Long dark blues
Listen


~~*~~
 

When I found out Jason Molina died,
I started crying for no reason.
I didn’t even know who he was,
had never heard a single song by him.
I have no idea why I reacted so viscerally
to reading about the death of this person
with no familiarity to me.
But I did, so I listened to his music.

There is no justice I can do with my own words
to the beautiful poetry of lyrics like,
“Mama, here comes midnight, with the dead moon in its jaws.”

As for “the big star is falling,”
I remember this comet coming through in March:
https://phys.org/news/2013-03-naked-eye-comet-sky.html
right around the time of his death.
Almost like it came to bear away his soul.

“The real truth about it is my kind of life's no better off
It's got the maps or if it's lost”

I found myself singing those lines
after almost every meltdown I had for a period of several years,
wondering if other people would be better off if I were dead.
People sure seem fucking miserable around me sometimes.
I felt like a curse, a stain.

Many years ago, I got caught in a riptide.
I didn’t know what it was or how to escape from it,
but I screamed to my god for help,
and a voice of insight gave me an idea,
and I made it back to shore by swimming diagonally.

On the many dark days after the meltdowns,
singing those lyrics,
I’d look out at the river near our home
and wonder if I didn’t belong at its bottom.

I’m not suicidal. I have harm OCD.
But its deranged voice can be loud when I feel adrift and alone.
It wasn’t that I
wanted to go in the river.
It was that it seemed that perhaps I was
meant to drown,
and had cheated.
And ever since, the effect of my life on others was rotten.
 

Maybe someone would get fed up one day and push me in.
Or maybe it’d rise above its banks one day and grab me.

Strange I didn’t realize until after my autism diagnosis
that my brain was trying to tell me something specific with its choice of lyrics:
I was using the
wrong map.
Of course my life kept getting worse.
I was trying to treat my meltdowns the same as my panic attacks.
But a meltdown is not a panic attack.
And the additional demands I was placing on my brain
along with the increased incoherence of wrong maps
and directions was just making the meltdowns worse.

Moreover, I was denying my inner voice and my research and experience.
Who doesn’t feel like they belong at the bottom
of the sea when they keep pushing themselves under?
I treated myself like I deserved to drown.
So I felt like I deserved to fucking drown.

Part of the deep tragedy of these lyrics
and their accompanying despair is that when
we feel that way—that maps aren’t making a difference—
it isn’t necessarily that no map can help us.
It’s that people (often well-intended) keep giving us the wrong ones,
and we don’t have the knowledge or the confidence to reject them.
And until we do, we never find the maps we need.
We just keep shoving our heads underwater
and wondering why we can’t breathe.

I’m sorry the world lost you so soon, Jason Molina,
and that your demons dragged you down.
Your comet shines bright.