Late Post

Have you ever listened to a song that you’ve heard and sung along with multiple times and then one time, at one moment–it clicks? Songs are written to convey something, but that doesn’t mean listeners always get it, especially not right away.

Tonight I was listening to Tom Petty’s “Learning to Fly” and I got it. I don’t know if it was the snow, the bonafide snow that falls so quick and so thick you just know, that in a few hours, your world is going to be a new place. You quite literally will be transported somewhere else where a dark road in the dead of night is an interstellar flight to a winter wonderland. I don’t know if it was that, but I think that promise put my mind in the right place. That place was to understand the meaning of the song, at least as I see it.

Well I started out down a dirty road
Started out all alone
And the sun went down as I crossed the hill
And the town lit up, the world got still

I’m learning to fly, but I ain’t got wings
Coming down is the hardest thing

Well the good ol’ days may not return
And the rocks might melt and the sea may burn

I’m learning to fly, but I ain’t got wings
Coming down is the hardest thing

Well some say life will beat you down
Break your heart, steal your crown
So I’ve started out, for God knows where
I guess I’ll know when I get there

I’m learning to fly, around the clouds,
But what goes up must come down

I’m learning to fly, but I ain’t got wings
Coming down is the hardest thing

Learning to fly is about learning to be happy. Good comes and good goes, but being happy, not euphoric, not ecstatic, is something some have to learn to do. There are no wings, there is nothing that can put you up there. It’s just you, learning to be happy.

This reminded me of Arthur Dent who, to fly, had to simply forget to fall. As you throw yourself at the ground, you must be distracted by something as you plummet towards the ground. What does this say about happiness, if the symbolism follows through? That it can’t be forced. One must learn, that as they fall, to look for the distractions. I’m not sure if the two tie together, but for me, there is a simple lesson about happiness in both.

You can learn to fly, or you can develop a knack for missing the ground. Either way, be happy. Happiness isn’t the euphoria of our best moments, but the acceptance and enjoyment of the moments in between.

 

Though this isn’t about writing, this is something I felt compelled to share. I hope your Saturday brings you a wingless flight or forgetful fall.

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Late Post

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s