Love...it's a weird thing ain't it? You're fucking right it is. - Lyrics from Stunner by Dan le Sac vs Scroobius Pip
This is an exceedingly odd topic to address. And I do indeed feel like I have to write about it, but I'm not entirely sure how to begin. I am compelled to converse about love. Love for a beautiful smile and such kind eyes; and a love of live music that I feel through to my bones.
Two sensations of impending and immediate excitement, feelings of belonging and enchantment and grounding in a hard and gritty reality. While one continued, though muted, and the other was overshadowed entirely, I have returned to both to find they were not only there waiting for me all along, but have grown even closer to my heart during a time when I thought very little was even alive.
Last week I admitted to some extremely dark times that, to put it most accurately, have been happening to me. I haven't been feeling them as such since it's very hard to actually or accurately feel anything in that state. You do feel, but it is de-contextualised, and seems to have no relationship to any sources or specific causes.
This applies too, to love. It did not disappear completely, but I certainly lost any sense of real definition for what that feeling really meant. And while people were still able to shock that sensation into my mind on occasion, all other things: books, writing and music, began to lose their power.
A tingling sensation
But a few wondrous nights lately have more than brought me back to my loves and my loves to me.
Soaking up the sunshine with the Brickwork Lizards on a lazy Sunday in University Parks; wailing away the hours with The Urban Voodoo Machine on a Thursday in Hoxton; tapping and swaying away to Balloon Ascents and Megan Henwood on Friday in my lovely Oxford.
At all of them, I got that feeling again. That toe-tapping, tingling, grinning vibration that runs from the tips of your fingers across the surface of your skin and deep down into your insides. That really great kind of live music that makes you feel like family just as you are. Accepted, loved and admired just for being there and being with the band: in spirit and in rhythm.
And then there's you
And it's not just the music that has made my feelings come alive once more. Before I continue, however, I have a short disclaimer:
Every now and then, despite my hard-edged, independent and anti-traditional attitude, I happily fall victim to being a complete sap. This is one of those moments.
When I see my baby smiling, it's like the sun is shining at me. - Lyrics from When She Whispers by the incomparable Brickwork Lizards.
Finding my way out of the distance and the dark is something I have had to do alone. Anyone who knows what it's like, knows that while others are there to support and hold you, encourage and believe in you - no one can bring you back to life except yourself.
But I want to say something to the one with that beautiful, infectious smile: I never lost sight of you, however far away I may have been. And now that I am back and better present with you once more, I find that you are so warm and wonderful that I am simply unable to contain the smile that you have given me.
And that's a little bit of why I had to write what I have written.
Alright, I'm almost done...
And so, here's to life, music and love. As cheesy as that may sound, right now, I could not be more grateful for them all.