Posts Tagged ‘#father’

My dad (MidiMike) asked me to share a poem with all of you that I wrote for him when I was younger. He has always been a huge influence in my life. I’m certain that my love of music comes from him, as does my love of poetry.  I hope this poem gives you a little insight on what it was like to be raised by a musician.- Alisa

Heritage Haiku

My dad wrote over

One hundred songs in my life.

I still quote the words.

 

If you think that your

Paradise is a place then

You’ll never find it.”

 

His basement band shook

My bedroom floor, creating

Huge waterbed waves.

 

Lessons learned from Sting,

David Bowie, and Pink Floyd.

“We could be heroes.”

 

Ran sound on weekends

I slept under his sound board.

Protected by wires.

 

For years he worked at

A music store. Customers

Were my fathers too.

 

Microphones, ADATs,

His baby grand piano.

Guitars not Barbies.

DSC_0116

Still Turning (c) 

I keep looking through the blinds
Not knowing what I’ll find.
I keep looking
I keep looking.

I start walking out the door
Can’t remember what for.
I start walking
I keep walking.

I turn left then I turn right
Just trying to get it right.
I’m still turning
Still turning.

Spending much more than I make
Never have what it takes.
Spending my time
Spend all my time.

Think about it day and night
See it all in black and white.
Better think again
Think again.

I turn left then I turn right
Just trying to get it right.
I’m still turning
Still turning.

Looks good but sounds all wrong
Like words to a different song.
Doesn’t feel right
Feel alright.

Never know what the future brings
Tell Daddy everything.
You never know
You never know.

Once upon a time, maybe two
You love someone who loves you.
Save the moment
Save the moment.

Yesterday was my mother’s birthday. The first birthday since she passed away last December.

I spend a lot of time blaming my mother – and parents in general for my musical interests and open minded philosophy.  They each gave me a lot.  But my parents divorced in a day when that was not accepted or supported.  Six children and single mom.  Everything was a struggle.  During all of the less fortunate times she managed to plug away toward her goals with her gentle influence.  We would do a lot of things other kids would not dream of and she encouraged many of them.  But we never wanted to hear her say to us she was disappointed in us…….  Having her disappointed was the worst punishment imaginable.

There is no way to know how she guided each of us through early years and then through puberty, early teens and inevitably into kids who knew it all.   I am just now putting them together piece by piece, here and there.  When my younger brother Chris got really sick I lived close and visited regularly.  I was his medical power of attorney and took care of his end of life affairs.  Radiation, Chemo, feeding tube, surgeries.  Emergency rooms to ICU to Hospice he never lost his smile and wonder.  He appreciated everything.  At the end I described him as mentally, financially, physically and emotionally exhausted.  It takes resources to fight back and he just did not have enough left at that time.

My mother also found out she had a number of cancers.  She chose not to take the normal treatments. She chose not to have the normal tests.  She chose me to help her with end of life like I did for Christopher.  She did not roll over and play dead if that is what you might be thinking.  She read and stayed up on current events. She exercised and researched better foods and diet.  She got out and enjoyed the change of each season and the change in weather.

Pauline was more interested in making us comfortable and taking care of her extended family than she was in complaining or moping.  She controlled her pain and as it got really bad she wanted to be able to have final word; to be able to think and communicate for fear she would have a stroke or complication and not be able to tell them not to resuscitate her.  She feared being a vegetable more than anything.  She was smart and educated and proud.  That was something she did not want to endure.  She did not.

When I grow up, I want to be just like her.  Birthdays don’t mean much to me – ask my kids – but this one did.  Happy Birthday, mom.

*Please see previous post if you are interested in the story behind why I wrote this song. *

Lost Love”   86 bpm  © MSK 6-2004

We’d been together just a little while

Each day melted into the other.

Daylight through the evenings we danced,

Completely consumed by one another.

As life went on our love got stronger.

My friends thought that it would never last.

I know all things come to an end.

Just didn’t think it would be so fast.

It’s been a long number of years now gone

How many more I don’t really know.

Everyday I try to say good bye,

but For some reason I just can’t let you go.

And he said, ‘son, if ignorance is bliss,

You must be a very happy man’.

Memories of your Lost Love might never go away,

But everyone else you love can.

Father and son, we were never far apart

Through ups and downs, good and the bad

We stood so proud; laughing together.

I’d wait forever but you won’t be back.

When my sister died I found myself crying.

Weeks upon weeks and still to this day

I realize I’m thinking about her

As I’m wiping my tears away.

Son, if ignorance is bliss,

You must be a very happy man.

Memories of your Lost Love might never go away,

But everyone else you know can.

Share what you have, help those in need

Focus on the people around you.

Ask us for help, talk to your friends

You’ll feel so much better when you do.

It’s been a long number of years now gone

How many more I don’t really know.

Everyday I try to say good bye,

But for some reason I just can’t let you go.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/dark-energy/id962943592

Death is nothing new.  My father died of cancer when I was – well, to be honest, I do not really know. mid-twenties? early thirties?  How can a person be talented enough to write beautiful music and still be so lame when it comes to anything important?  I am not sure, but my family has had to deal with me for a long time.  My parents were divorced for years and I did not know him that well.  At the same time, I felt like I had known him forever.  He was never there through the most difficult times In my life and yet at the same time he never left.  Reading about loss of a loved one on other blogs it is clear many people do not feel that way.  The loss is real, it is crippling, it never ends and there is no comfort for the emptiness, no magic words.

I KNOW that wasteland.  Years later my younger sister died from a freak drowning accident.  I was prepared for the death of my dad (and grandparents, friends and distant family members before him).  I shared his love of life and his regrets during that brief time.   For my sister I had no defense.  I did not dwell on death, but if I considered it, it was almost a guarantee she would outlive me.  Surrounded by close family and friends I just started crying.  Talking, greeting, consoling, hugging, but through it all I cried.  I could not share her love of life or future dreams.  I could not speak to her of death; she was gone.  I thought we had so much more time left.  For days if I saw her picture or heard her name; I cried. Even this far forward I had to mentally prepare to write this intro.

Not long ago, my younger brother had to pay his pleasure tax.  Years of drinking and smoking caught up  and throat cancer started eating away at him.  The funniest and kindest guy you would ever know, he did not want to burden anyone with his problems.  I did the best I could to let him know he was not alone and did not have to go through that by himself.  We spent a lot of time together in those last few months.  As his medical power of attorney, I followed his direction.  I understood his desires and knew his demons.  Some things are still too painful to think about so I don’t.  But I do remember what a great human being he was.  We cried many times together and apart.  These days I smile thinking about him, and how great humanity can be.

Love is another type of loss but for all my education and experience over the years I could not tell you which loss is more devastating.  Family you live with and know all the cool things you learned and shared together.  A loved one you will never be able to learn and share future things with.  Loss of the past or loss of the future.  The wasteland seems to keep spreading out forever.  You will never get through it and nothing can replace it.

In the middle of the wasteland jumping all the way up to the moon seems more likely than getting through to the other side.  But it is the sense of loss that keeps us there.   My father is still with me, telling me “remember the past, but look forward, son.   Don’t blind yourself to the path out, seek it”. Hopefully, you will see that your loved ones are still with you.

This is a fairly recent song.  I happened to be going through my files to build a catalog of songs I have, songs in the works and ones I have co-written for a project.  Looking through papers here and there, rifling through files saved from one form of media to another, I found a set of lyrics entitled “Lost Love”.  I looked at it for a while and started reading the lyrics.  I did not recognize any of it, but it was my handwriting and as you will soon see, it is very personal.  I read them and thought,   I need to do something with this.

I have instruments in almost every room in my house.  A week earlier I had been playing a chord progression that was simple but captured a certain feeling or mood that I liked.  I ran upstairs and got the lyrics I mentioned.  I played the guitar with the lyrics in front of me and started to sound out where the lyrics fit in the progression.

Thinking the music and lyrics fell together beautifully, I went to my studio to lay down a rough version of the song.  I used one microphone and recorded the guitar and melody line.   This is “Lost Love“.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/dark-energy/id962943592