It’s come back to visit again, the old romantic burning – the feeling of longing attached to no particular target. It’s a tie-in to whenever I half-settle, whenever I sit still in the presence of a place, knowing I’ll be here for a spell, knowing I’ll be leaving to wander again soon. The pangs of the feeling hold a familiar sway in a person’s single days. Hold sway on the tired days when you aren’t entirely sure which way to turn, when seeing a happy couple laughing together in front of you tugs fiercely at your heart strings.
Considerable portions of the feeling focus on the craving for love – it’s tied into romanticism and relationships heavily. Portions of it fall to love of other types as well – to a love of a community of friends, of place, of the pursuits of ones life… When I am moving, wandering, driving – it’s not running (I don’t seek it as an escape) but the pace keeps many thoughts quiet. Only in the stillness and routine of a more settled life do I think about the future, about the love that I have, about the love that I want.
An Antarctic winter is steeped in these moments. By the end of that dark, I thought I had a fairly good handle on the longing-quiet, on the melancholy associated with it. In that I can see beyond it, I do. Becoming mired in it or lost in its depths is no longer a worry of mine. So far as not encountering it though? Life always offers an opportunity to be challenged again – I can’t seem to avoid it. The universe of our growth is not so easy to run from.
Granted, this could all be due to the music I’m listening to tonight – an iTunes Genius playlist built around “The Luckiest” by Ben Folds… So on that note (and the fact that tomorrow will be nigh on sixty degrees!), a quote from the movie High Fidelity:
What came first, the music or the misery? People worry about kids playing with guns, or watching violent videos, that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands, literally thousands of songs about heartbreak, rejection, pain, misery and loss. Did I listen to pop music because I was miserable? Or was I miserable because I listened to pop music?