"drowning in a sea of faces, hardly keep my head above the surface..."

thirst (by deav 2003)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The end

I’m sad to say, but I did not like Back Spacer. That’s not the first time I don’t like a Pearl Jam album. Ok, grunge is dead, but the “sound”, no matter how it was labelled, no matter what demented effect it had in fashion and business (yeah, nothing to do with music…), no matter how dated it might seem, the sound itself was mind-blowing. I think that, to escape the “poser” culture around it, bands tried to run as far from it as they could. PJ was no exception.

As a “reborn” fan, I had the opportunity to go through the whole band’s discography about six years ago, and was a tad disappointed when I found out that sometimes only a couple of songs per album would make my heart jump. When “the Avocado” was released, I had just been to the first PJ concerts in my life, drenched in the emotion of the live experience. The album was a breath of fresh air, whole, furious, brave, breathtaking. Even the “bad songs” had their place in the story the album tells. Even the graphic design tells more than meets the eye (was I the only one to recognize the “singing head” of the Sandman universe?). I listened in tears, in ecstasy. Epiphany.

Well, life took me through other paths and all of a sudden there’s the new album. Listened once. Skipped a couple of songs after the first chords. Riot Act strikes back? Maybe I’m stuck in the past. Maybe I don’t understand evolution. Baby.

But then… Just Breathe. Ok, it’s one of those songs that, if ever played, will be one of Eddie’s solos, when the band is chilling backstage and he plays alone with the guitar and the harmonica. That would be all right, it would be in good company with other masterpieces like Dead Man Walking. Or maybe it’s one of those almost-boring-too-country-ish songs that Eddie writes sometimes. All right with me. But it’s not. It’s a gem. It’s beautiful. Moving. It slides through clich├ęs like a surfboard through maverick waves.

And then… The End. Listened like a hundred times, for more than three hours in a row. Burst into tears. It’s one of the saddest songs I’ve ever listened to. It’s probably one the most beautiful songs Eddie has ever written. And the voice? I really like the way he lets the voice come out hoarse, sort of aspirated, in that almost impossible high pitch progression. That’s totally his own. “I’ll take the blame, but just the same, this is not me…” Was it the arrangement, strings and all, one might ask? Risky, to say the least; it could have turned into the corniest thing ever. But it has not. It adds to the mood of the song. It’s respectful. Many, many, many tears later, my favourite lines: “Before I disappear, whisper in my ear, give me something to echo in my unknown future’s ear.”

All right, I’ll give it a second listen. It might win me over. You know, Pearl Jam saved my life once. Quite literally. For that I’m forever grateful. I’ll love PJ forever, even though I don’t automatically love every single thing that they do.

So, please, do come back to play. I’ll be there, me and my 10C wristband, standing for 12, 13, 14 hours, without eating, without going to the toilet, grabbing the rail, on the right side of the audience. I’ll even take a nap every now and then, head on the rail; the “Polar Bear”, the security guy, will worry about me again, wondering if I’m passing out. I’ll be fine, me and my endless grin and my chart with my song list, when the band begins to play. And I’ll jump, and sing along, and dodge the elbows of those tall people on my head and ribs. I’ll duck when they take some guy out of the crowd over me, the “hole on the rail”. I’ll probably be “rail cushion” to someone again. The hunger, the thirst, the pain, will vanish at some point. I won’t mind the heat or the rain. And when the guys go backstage to rest, I’ll stare at the spotlight when Ed begins to play The End on the guitar, no fancy strings needed, more intimate before a crowd than he would be if he were playing at someone’s porch. And I’ll cry my eyes out. Cry with my eyes open, so I won’t miss a thing.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

the heart of midlothian

by deav - 12 mar 2008

“tear my chest and grab out my heart
kiss it, lick it, toss it, stare
step on, dance on, spit on my heart
i won’t have a heart to care.”


by deav - 27 jun 2007

She was in light spirit. They were in the other room, it was clean, the bed soft with the rattling of recently washed bedsheets. The window was open and the clear starry sky could be seen, no neighboring buildings from that angle. He smelled of fresh soap and cologne, snoring by her side. His hand touched her arm in his sleep and moved forward to her waist. It became slowly aware of her, bringing him closer to consciousness. He moaned and moved his head to kiss her on the neck.

Why not? She thought, not particularly in the mood, wondering that it would mean another bath after. It was hot, anyways.

It was still quite simple, then. She could not foresee how harder it would become as years went by. He was gentle, as usual. He had not become hesitant, then frustrated, then angry and rough. Yet.

But even as she slowly began to fall in that state of abandonment closely followed by the strain of building pleasure, she could fell that something was wrong.

She suddenly realized that she was panting, not out of desire, but out of fear. She wondered in slow motion that he would not notice, he could not tell the lines carved between her eyebrows and her growing moans now from her usual face of lust. Unless she told him. She tried to wash away the escalating sensation of anguish. Why now? She thought, now that everything seemed to be all right? Maybe she could just bear it, for the sake of starting over. Because she wanted everything to be well again.

But she just could not. All of a sudden she realized she had stopped breathing. Behind eyes shut there were images floating, lurking and she knew it was not about him, it was not his fault. She did not want to see the images, memories of things she was unaware of having experienced. But she could not open her eyes, she would have to look at him and she could not look at him, not now. But neither could she just bear it, she could not control the urge to push him away. And she did.

But he did not realize it was not the repulsion that comes from unbearable passion, not this time.

“Please, stop!” She did not know if she had said it aloud. She began to struggle and squirm. He groaned startled when she punched and kicked.

“What?!” Still panting, he released her, scared, worry washing away with paleness the flush of pleasure.

She stopped with a halt, eyes wide-open, breathing heavily, tears still rolling by the side of her face into her ears.

Was she screaming? NO-NO-NO-NO-NO-NO-NO-NO-NO! She remembered she had.

“What happened? Did I hurt you?” He tried to touch her but she cringed away.

“I don’t know.” She just pulled the covers up to her breasts and rolled over, her back to him. She just wished she could explain; say that she was sorry, that it was not about him. But now she could barely stand his voice, his heat, let alone look at him.

He did not understand, but at least let her be, jumping out of the bed and dashing out of the room.

She just wished she could vanish. She swallowed back the bile. She did not dare to close her eyes again, lest the images would come back. Oh, tears. Now she could keep them open and yet not see.

* * *

scribblings II

by deav - June 2007


I put down the book for a while. I went to the kitchen for water and it just popped in my mind: “I need you.” I wonder what you’re doing now. Sleeping? Looking up at the oak beams in the ceiling, unable to sleep with restlessness not figured out? Dozing off in the leather armchair by the dying fire in the library, a book resting on your lap? Or is it too hot already for a fire, I wonder? But you left the window open. A gust of chill might eventually cool your cheeks and wake you with a slight shiver, as dawn breaks. I wish I were there to ease the crease between your brows with a kiss. And rub the tip of my finger gently on the deep red mark the rim of your glasses carved on the bridge of your nose.

“I need you” struck me with a shock, you know. I’ve been doing my best for a long time not to need anyone. I hope you will understand that it came then as a way of being at peace with solitude. And dealing with the dread of depending and being depended on. The need to be unattached. Free to go – where, I wonder?. But “I need you” comes now with a different meaning I can’t quite make out. All I know – feel – is, it’s huge, overwhelming. Scary. Like walking through fire. But I’m willing to do it if it takes me to you.

I hold my breath and shut my eyes and say a prayer for you. Sweet dreams, m’eudail. That feathery brush on your cool lips? It’s just the ghost of my kiss.