Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Remember the Mountain Bed

Maybe it's obvious to most people, but it's more apparent to me every day how becoming a parent changes your perspective (I imagine it will be even more so when the baby's actually here!). Everyday routines and situations that I move through without thinking suddenly give me pause as I visualize how the impending arrival of such a small person will change them in ways numerous and large. In one way, it reminds me of falling in love. Doing so usually causes songs to take on new meaning, and that's precisely what's happened to me, but from a parental perspective. This requires some explanation: like many young males, I acquired an acoustic guitar during my high school years, took a handful of lessons, dropped them because they weren't teaching me Zeppelin, and used the small bit I had learned to amuse myself playing poor imitations of my favorite songs. I play for myself and by myself, too embarrassed to even play in front of my wife (I usually practice when she's not home, keeping one eye trained on the window, watching for her car, and if she arrives, I quickly set the guitar back in its stand and pretend I was reading. Why I do this, I don't know.). One song I have loved and played for years is "Remember the Mountain Bed," a song written by Woody Guthrie, but not set to music until the band Wilco did so in 1998. The lyrics are of the chill-inducing sort; so good that you wish you wrote them, but I always thought the song was about a man reflecting on his love for his wife and recalling a long ago afternoon on a mountainside. Playing through this song today, it hit me. The stuff I thought this song was about? It's in there, but now I think what Woody was really trying to tell me was that the act of creating a family - that is what life is all about. It might just be why we're here, and if you understand it, it can make you happy and give you purpose.

Follow the link. Read the lyrics. You won't be sorry.
87 days until baby.

1 comment:

  1. What a wonderful accumulation of memories he will have to share with his child through rereading this blog....he/she will be lucky to have such a father...
    (Comment on my facebook page after linking to your blog...from Jennifer Weidman Roberts!)