Signs, Patterns, and Omens

SONGS

Sweet Disposition by The Temper Trap.

 I found this group after my divorce from my first wife. It literally carried me through that, and ever since, I’ve had a particular affinity for it. In a general sense, my music taste evolves as I get older, but a few essential songs tend to stick with me. This is one of them.

 Everything about it resonates with me, mainly when I’m distraught. I’m not smart enough musically to describe the characteristics accurately, so please bear with me while I try.

The pacing and broken word-play are my favorite. The sentences aren’t strung together for emphasis, but rather each word gets its own dynamic prominence. I also love the tenor voice the lead singer has for this song; it’s too high for me, but I always try to sing along.

I find the chord progressions majestic and straightforward, conveying both immense pains as well as hope and future light. Those are two things I can always use more of.

Walking on Broken Glass by Annie Lennox.

 To say I love her voice is an absolute understatement. There’s a combination of strength, maturity, and fragility in her songs that I’ve never heard anywhere else. When these natural elements are combined with the melody and lyrics of the aforementioned song, it creates a unique disparity that I always come back to.

 A melodic buoyancy in tandem with all-too-real lyrics…I appreciate the optimism as it addresses relatable topics. 

 Annie brings a heavy dose of realism to her singing, and I think that’s the main piece that continues to bring me back.

NATURE

Running Water

 I am weird about water. I love to be around it. I love how it smells, sounds, and looks. But I hate being in it. I would literally enjoy just about anything else. However, the sound of strong running water takes away so much of my anxiety and helps loosen my thoughts away from my brain.

 Waterfalls are gorgeous, and lakes are breathtaking, but when I need to really reset, a good river always finds its way into my life. I’m sure there’s a lot of symbolism in that, and I’ll know them better one day, but now I know it calms me down and brings me peace.

 Again, two more things I’m always happy to receive.

Aspen Trees

 Ironically, I’ve never been to the aspen forest down by Fish Lake in Utah, though my wife and I really want to go. I mean, the largest living organism on the planet also happens to be one of my favorite things …that’s a no-brainer.

 This one is a little bit of a cheat-entry. Aspens grow all over the state of Utah, making them not that hard to find. However, I find myself mesmerized when I’m around them, and I can’t help but step back from my life to admire their beauty and movement. 

 Their multi-colored leaves, the outer and inner layers of bark (one so malleable and the other unforgiving), and the sound they make when the breeze blows through them are one epitome of magic for me.

 Aspens allow my mind to divert down paths I can’t seem to find on my own. Life is more manageable, approachable, and enjoyable to look at. I’m not really sure how I else to explain that part, and yes, I know how that sounds.

Caves

 I absolutely love caves, and I’m somewhat terrified of them at the same time. I’d like to start spelunking, but I have no money to do so. Breaks my heart.

 I haven’t been to many caves, but they hold a lot of symbolism for me, and I encounter them a lot in my dreams. They’re an indication of self-analysis for me, as well as the freedom to dream and delve into the unknown. They don’t set the boundaries for me but instead break them.

 I’ve recently felt a pull to visit one of the prolific caves here near Salt Lake, so when it opens back up, that’s where I’m headed.

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