Song in my Head

musical-1301944_1280That tune in my head…

Instead of sleeping, I’m standing at the bathroom sink writing by the glow of the night light. It’s late. I can’t stop thinking about the song that is in my head.  The song, what I think about it, is clear now but will be gone in the morning if I don’t write about it. Thoughts in the night are like that, elusive, and must be caught at the time.

What I think, as my mind sings this song, is that the songs of the body all seem to take place in the head. Have you noticed? Sometimes they come out of my mouth, with the help of lungs and vocal chords. But those songs are only the extensions of the more perfect songs in my head. I have noticed that the song I’m hearing in my brain is never off pitch, never without proper breath support, never bad in tone.

It repeats, over and over, wherever the tune is most interesting, comforting or beautiful. The song in my head does not worry about boring others as it evolves and plays back again and again. Lately it has been in Latin, but many times it is wordless, simple and tonal.  Last summer, as I rode the lawnmower around the oneacrewoods, the song was only seven notes long. It was like a theme song to a movie clip of green grass and towering oaks.

What are these relentless songs and why do I sing them? If I wanted to stop, it would be like trying not to think, in the middle of the night when I should be sleeping. Have you tried “not thinking” in order to fall asleep? I like my songs. The perfect ones in my head are wonderfully enjoyable.

Beethoven had songs in his head, symphonies really, and he was able to write them down. His were wonderful too.

But no one says, ‘Where is God my Maker, who gives songs in the night?’ ”  The Holy Bible  Job 35:10

Disparity Troubles Me

Journal: June 30, 2018

It’s been 18 years but I still find myself starting dates with 19… I don’t actually write it, but I think it, momentarily. Another last day of June, three quarters gone. Time is doing its protective, progressive, profound thing.


A friend had his car repossessed last week. It disappeared from the Salvation Army parking lot while he slept inside the building. He was taking a night off from swatting mosquitoes. That’s the trouble with sleeping in your car with the windows open, and you have to have them open or else you have to run the engine to keep cool. He left his clothes, his wallet, and pretty much everything else he had in the car because it was thought to be safer from theft than inside. He had been on the phone with the used car dealership that day, assuring them his payment was coming, and that he was getting the insurance coverage current. They had sounded understanding. But, of course, they have to sound that way. They don’t want to clue you in…

He spent the next few days convincing his mom and grandmother to go halves toward the insurance. His weekend gig at the church nearly completed the $300 payment due. Then he found out that he was being charged $300 for the towing to the repo lot. By this time the shirt and shorts he had been wearing night and day were getting a bit rank. He needed to get his clothes, wallet and maybe a few things he could pawn out of the car. Before I took him the 25 miles I wanted him to make sure he was going to the right place and that they weren’t going to be closed when we got there. He has a history of borderline cluelessness about details like that, in spite of being constantly in some kind of situational drama.

We got there before closing time. I let him go in to do his business with them. He came out and got in the car, silent, no stuff with him. They hadn’t told him it would cost $150 to get access to his car, for any reason. I went back in with him, but the lady was curt (mean), cold, unyielding and wouldn’t even talk to me. She said it was time to close and left us standing at the counter with no recourse.

This is not an unfamiliar kind of spot for this particular friend. I would accurately say it is a cyclical happening, with variations having to do with dwelling places, jobs, girlfriends. He’s pretty worn out with the struggle, tired of waiting for things to be different. His fantasy is to have his bills paid.

Last night while working on a mindless task I had the TV on – I don’t remember the channel. It caught my attention because a neighboring town was mentioned. Another business was cashing on the reality show craze. This was a company that built pools, amazing pools with rocks, grottos, beach entries, waterfalls. A doctor had hired them to redo his backyard pool into something you’d find at a high-end resort. It was on a $350,000 budget. It was really an interesting show, and the pool turned out to be gorgeous. The doc worked in an ER and did twelve to fourteen-hour shifts most of the time and just wanted a place to relax.

I don’t know how to feel, but I am bothered, troubled. I don’t have a solution to the disparity in lifestyles. Money is in there somewhere but it’s not the real problem. I have tried to throw money at the problem but I don’t have enough to make anything different for my friend for more than a day, if that long. I don’t begrudge the doctor what he is earning for his many years of study, his dedication to his job. He paid some deserving workmen to build that pool.

I pray for my friend and help when I can, and hope with him that things will change. But I’m troubled, just sayin’…


Why is it so difficult to write? Life right now is not a single thing that can be described in a post or series of posts. It is made of rabbit trails and randomness going off in many directions and not making much sense. It won’t stand still and be examined and written about.

I know if I could view it from way outside I could probably guess where it’s all headed and see some patterns, some sense that escapes me in the moment I’m living. It takes all my concentration to keep focused on the enjoyment of the moment – because I know being present won’t last forever. And there is always something to enjoy, because God is good and I see evidence of it in so many ways. But I do hope that the inspiration to write comes soon. I want to write. I want to tell my story to myself, if to no one else.

Battling Winter, post #4

We battle winter in much the same way as southerners battle the long, sweltering summers – we move from one “air conditioned” space to another. The difference is that we condition our air to be warmer than the outdoors and southerners condition the air to be cooler than the outdoors.

The condo that Mom and I are in has some lovely air conditioning features. One is the heating system itself. It is hot water heat that circulates through the floor. I often put my feet down and feel the warmth of the floor, which makes everything feel warmer. Another wonderful warmth comes from the fireplace. When you have a chill, there is no nicer way to warm up than to back up close to a fireplace with a glowing fire. Modern fireplaces can heat up a whole room in no time at all.

Doing things

While I spend time in various warm spaces in Wisconsin, I find many of the same things to do that I do in Florida. However, I think it is true that there is more time spent doing quiet things. The short days, the darkness, the cold, all give me excuse to stay inside and eat, knit, read, eat, watch TV, do puzzles, talk on the phone, look at Facebook, cook, and work, of course.  Mom and I do all these things, and while we do them we talk about  All of these normal activities seem different when I look out the window and see the bare trees and a world white with snow. I am glad and content to be inside where it’s warm.  20171219_2109471963711294.jpg20171219_211041291305750.jpg20171219_2109571623281655.jpg20171221_1855031082116113.jpg

Being with People

Some of my favorite times here in Wisconsin turn out to be in the car with people I care about, taking them where they need to go. Winter driving hazards can make it difficult to travel. Places people need to go are often farther apart. There is safety in numbers. So, we get chances to spend time in the car, talking to each other.  Last week it was an hour’s drive to Ashland with my aunt and uncle for a doctor appointment. I learned a lot about them during that time. Yesterday it was a drive to the hospital in Duluth with my sister in law for a radiation treatment. It was good just spending time together.

Thinking Right

In thinking about how I battle extremes of weather in the places I live, I’m coming to the conclusion that I had better do it mentally if I want to do it well. I need to set my mind to seeing the good, the beauty in my surroundings. I need to avoid isolation when it starts to make me uncomfortable. I need to be active when constant introspection starts to drive me crazy.  I’m just sayin’ that the battle isn’t always taking place where you think it is.

The Strangeness of Being Cold

There is more to feeling cold than just the physical sensation.

I know it’s largely physical, dependent upon location. I rarely feel cold in Florida. This morning we stood outside watching the Airstream being backed into place. It was only about an hour total, but I’ve not been warm since.

There is the mental side of it. I’ve been reading a lot lately, stories of young people feeling that their lives could just as well be ended, because of their physical misery. There are so many of those stories. And there is also my daughter’s story with heavy doses of despair and anxiety. And my other daughter’s story of overwhelming demands, confusion and loneliness. And there is being in Seattle. All these are part of feeling cold, I think.

wp-1482788166367.jpgI read until my eyes were heavy and there was no need to keep them open so I went to lie down. I am in a house which I am sure is heated adequately, yet I am cold, dressed in two layers on my legs, two layers and a jacket on top. A wool blanket is over me as I wait for it to trap the heat and make me feel warm, but it doesn’t happen. Even the bed and blankets I’m lying on give the lingering sensation of cool, like an unwanted draft. It’s not painful or intolerable. It’s nagging.

Every surface around me is waiting to grab some of my energy, especially the floor. I feel it through my socks, my shoes. The chairs feel cold, and oh, the leather car seat is the worst. When I back up to the heater on the wall, it heats one small portion of me but makes all the other portions more aware of their chill. It’s hard to even think about undressing at night. I touch my face with icy fingers and feel the effect of it all the way down to my feet.

It is not the actual temperature either. Outside, everything is the color of cold. Cold looks smoky blue, five shades of foggy grey, and the darkness of being wet. I want to move, to work up some heat, to exercise (not like the shirtless runner I saw yesterday, but a little sweat would be nice).

I am hoping this is a temporary phenomenon. I am cold, just sayin’…

Where in my mind am I?

I was very tired last night.  I fell asleep in the chair watching tv and decided it was crazy to waste sleepiness on a chair.  I would go to bed where I so often wish I was sleepy and am not.  I got ready for bed and got in, turned out the light.  As I was lying there and my body was getting numb to it’s surroundings, as I lay quietly behind my closed eyelids waiting for sleep, I suddenly could not remember whether I was in the chair thinking about being in bed, or in bed thinking about being in the chair. Weird things happen in that space between awake and asleep.

The worst part was, I had to get up and go write down what it was like because I knew I’d forget it if I didn’t.  By then I was wide awake again and stayed up too late like usual.  The mind is a crazy place, just sayin’…

Anything like that ever happen to you?

It started here, in my chair.