Thursday, February 14, 2013

A Valentine

This song has haunted me for most of my life. I heard it once a long, long time ago, on some random, intermittent radio station. I don't recall hearing it more than once, but it's possible that I might have. I never knew the title or the artist's name. Occasionally, out of the blue, fragments of the chords, melody and lyrics would snap back into my consciousness. It happened only rarely, and each time I would think: "There's that song again... I need to find it." But the recollection was always fleeting -- an apparition, a daydream -- the achey sounds floating away from me like the tiny seeds of a dandelion's wish. I could never retain the memory for long enough and it always fractured and fell away from me before I could get ahold of it. Heartbroken and missing it constantly, I sometimes felt as if I'd imagined it all. Over the years, the song flickered in and out of my life -- appearing and disappearing -- fading back into the spirit world every time. And each time it disappeared, it left a song-shaped hole in my heart. But there was nothing I could do except think wistfully of my beloved from afar, and hope for a time when it would come back to me. Those chords, those words -- their absence hurt so much. Would they ever be mine?

And then... Google. One time when the song returned, I happened to be near a computer. The specific lyrics I remembered that day were: "is everything all right... together love..." It wasn't much to go on, but I typed those words into the search box and Google went looking. And it brought me a result! The name of my long-lost love was "Hearts" by Marty Balin. Of course the title of the song was "Hearts" -- what else would it be? Finally, after years of carrying a torch for a ghost, my love was unrequited no more.