Oct 5, 2006 at 1:11 AM
All Alone

All alone, I'm so all alone
There is no one else but you
All alone by the telephone
Waiting for a ring, a ting-a-ling

I'm all alone every evening
All alone, feeling blue
Wond'ring where you are and how you are
And if you are all alone too

I wonder where you are and how you are
And if you are all alone too


I can't sing this song ("All Alone" by Irving Berlin) without starting to cry - I never have been able to -- even when I wasn't lonely.

When you're lonely, truly lonely and not just starving for attention, there is an odd feeling to it that is something akin to despair and grief, but not quite the same. It is duller than grief, and less galling than despair. Whatever it is, "All Alone" captures that ineffable quality about loneliness with more accuracy than any other song I know.

In order to sing the song in the right key and with the proper tone and cadence, my throat has to open up to just the way it does right before a sob -- the kind you release unexpectedly. The whole song, once sung, feels like grief that has escaped my body and flown right out of my mouth along with the song. The song performs a magic trick on me, making me feel something and then release it in the last few words. It's just long enough to do this, and just short enough to make it powerful.

There is something so amazingly magical about that.

When singing a good song, I fill with the emotion of the song, the emotion that was captured by the songwriter and considered important enough to immortalize in musical words.

It's no wonder that so many religions throughout the ages have used song to pull the emotions out of their church members. Think of Jewish cantors, those monks, "Ave Maria", and rain dancers. Song does something to the soul, activates emotions where they otherwise would lie dormant. It makes people have to both communicate and release an aesthetic.

That in itself is a wonder.

I realized something about myself. The only thing I have done every day since I was born was sing. Of course, with the exception only of days with strep throat or the flu or something. I sing in the shower, I sing when doing dishes, I sing when I am walking around. I sing when the radio plays music. I sing when I'm sad, and I sing when I'm joyful. When I was in the womb, I was probably singing.

I think I will continue to sing every day of my life.

1 Responses to Song

  1. Mikey Says:

    Sounds good to me. :)