Author Archives: redheadreverie

Night Drives: Musical Inspiration {Hyacynth}

Night Drive

We sit in his parked car.

Dimmed moonlight seeps in through the open windows, tattooing temporary tiny shadows onto the cloth seats and my freshly sun-kissed arms as I stare at the silhouettes of leaves resting quietly on massive, solid oak branches, gentle patterns pressed against the starlight sky.

Even with the windows down, the air is heavy; it’s been working diligently at drenching our naked skin with humidity, leaving tiny footprints of moisture along our brows, hair lines, napes of our necks for the past two hours.

We’ve barely gone beyond making little effort to engage in conversation; there’s no need for words anymore. We’ve run the entire soundtrack of each other’s self-proclaimed best album of all time in one summer, letting each layer, each chord, each harmony and each lyric soak press into our skins. And tonight we’re both hearing the words from a song we’ve listened to a thousand times before but never really heard.

“I’ll take your words as if you were talking to me.
So say what I know you’ll say.
Say it through your teeth.
Now in the deep and down, your heart moves.
I don’t know how, but I know I want out. 
Wait for something better, will I know when it can be us?”

There’s not much to say that hasn’t already been hung out to dry with last week’s laundry. I know what he’s thinking; he’s got my number, too. My sentiments remain as heavy, stagnant as the humid August air. I desperately need a breeze to sweep me away, take my heart hostage and run until it can’t recognize a single scene in the landscape.

This drive on this night, it’s such a contrast from ones past. Night drives where the chill of May still clung in the early summer air, driving goosebumps over my arms just beneath my light sweater, brimmed with conversations that weaved through the time and space inside his old car until we could see small hints of sunlight creeping over the bluffs, peaking in between leaves dancing in a slight breeze.

“Hands around your waist.
Nameless, standing cold.
Take in restraint like a breath.
My lungs are so numb from holding back.”

Night drives where we’d stripped off our sweaters, kicked off our shoes, talking about sweeping philosophical generalizations that were actually little glimpses of self-confessed truths.

“I said it out loud over and over but what do I know.
I said it out loud but it did not help.
I’ll stop now.
Just so I can hear you I stay up as late as it takes, as long as it takes.”

Night drives where each truth that was unraveled undressed another layer we’d cloaked our outer selves in, dying to undress, shed a shirt, jeans in the thickening summer heat.

“When the time we have now ends,
When the big hand goes round again.
Can you still feel the butterflies? 
Can you still hear the last goodnight?”

Night drives where we found ourselves tangled in each other’s discarded clothes, layers of history, clinging to each other’s underwear-clad bodies while hoping for this time to be different, praying for the current of love to swim against the undertow of reality.

“Feelings change so fast. 
Safety scares them away.
I can’t bring myself to say it;
it’s my own advice I need.
Nowhere and then nowhere.
Living trapped inside the chase.”

Until we’re left here, on a night drive where we’ve found we’re left naked, stripped completely of all our layers, souls barred, secrets shared, staring at each other and wondering how the flesh looks so starkly different from the clothing.

“Wait for something better?
I shouldn’t, it’s not enough.
Pull one excuse from another.
Just one excuse from another.
This time it means us.”

We’re left here. Listening. Finally listening. In your car. Only shadows covering our nakedness, temporary tattoos that will disappear come morning when we layer our clothes, redress our souls. And we find the layers of our soundtrack –the harmony, the melody, the chords — are just clothing to the lyrics we’ve been trying to undress from our first night drive.

All lyrics in quotations marks from songs from Clarity, Jimmy Eat World.

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Next week we will be wrapping up our month of Music Creativity with links from all of you. Don’t forget you still have time to compose a blog post, create a playlist or snap some photos inspired by our prompt or your own musical inspiration. Don’t forget to tag your photos #BPCREATES and submit you post on our Facebook. We can’t wait to see your inspiration.

Valentine’s Day: Bigger Picture Moments

Instagrid doesn't tell me whose this is :-(

Oh, the day of L-O-V-E.

Valentine’s Day!

It’s time to celebrate LOVE this week with your Bigger Picture Moment. Here’s a couple of snippets from last week’s love fest…

Jade – “Because love is deeper than distance. And we are very loved.”

Stephanie – “I welcome her into the arms of a mother’s love that knows no end.”

Brook – “I LOVE our time together. Just me and my little red, cruising down the road ready for adventure.”

Melissa – ” Hip to hip, shoulder to shoulder a bond being formed, stronger and stronger each day.”

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Join the LOVE party and link up your heart-felt moment over at Brook’s today.

Have a LOVELY day!

BP CREATES: Music is Our Thing {Alita}

Music was in the air on the day I was born. Upon my first burst of breath the back-beat of a drum pounded as my heart. The riffs and chords of an entire soul-nation were inherited to me and music coursed through my veins. I was not born in just any city or state, I was born in Michigan, just outside of Detroit rock city. Oh you know, you knoooow, that music is our backbone. It is our soul. Michigan and music go hand in hand- it is our thing.

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Dance parties exploded in our basement with each revolution of the vinyl record. My mother was a dancer. She had calves that pulsed with each toe spin. She had eyes that laughed as she dipped her arms low and snapped. Her real love-language is music. And she made sure that my brother and I spoke her language, too.

My favorite songs when I was little were, It’s The Same Old Song by the Four Tops and Where Did Our Love go by the Supremes. I would sing these songs into a wide black brush sashaying past my mirror with my pony tail bobbing in time. I can still see in my mind’s eye the young girl who hung on every word of each line. How the beats made me snap my fingers in time. How the words rolled off my lips. The innocence of this music and of my childhood can be defined in the lyrics. Some words were rich in ambiguity other lyrics clear as a blue sky day. They were palpable. They were current. They are ever-lasting.

And on the last day of class for the school year, the minute that my brother and I walked in the door  our mom would put Alice Cooper on the record player and we would belt at the top of our lungs “Well we got no choice all the girls and the boys makin all that noise ‘Cause they found new toys- well we can’t salute ya can’t find a flag if that don’t suit ya that’s a drag-  SCHOOLS OUT FOR SUMMER, SCHOOLS OUT FOREVER, SCHOOLS BEEN BLOWN TO PIECES…”  It is and was our thing.

Each note from the constantly played 12 inch dark circles; imprinted on to my heart-record. And I’ve played the songs of my youth over and over again in my mind. My mom brought me up to respect our soul-full heritage. She raised me to enjoy our distinctive melodies, riffs, chords, and time. I grew up to the tunes of Motown. I grew up on Alice Cooper and Ted Nugent. I grew up on this music that came from our city- our people- our heart. It has infused with my heart.

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“Spin the dark circle, mama” I hear. Music is intergenerational you know. And our record player; it is a time machine. I rotate in some Temptations and instantly we are soothed with David Ruffin’s first line from “My girl” and then move the record back in to the cardboard album just so we can sink ourselves in a Smoky-smooth 45 singing Tears from a Clown. Once I hear the pop and crackle I jump up and put the needle in a Diana Ross record that I’ve adored my entire life. Every single groove tells a story.

To be immersed into music- it is an entire experience. We are emotionally attached to these songs that make the soundtrack our lives. We toy with the flirtation that the beats make. We sing along with our whole beings. These lyrics are our language. The songs, the beats, the culture, the stories- Music is always in the air. My boys are being raised on music like I was raised on music like you were raised on music- like we all were raised on music. It is part of our humanity.

It is our thing.