Week 7 – February 14 2014 – Misunderstandings

Week 7 – Misunderstandings

This is another new song. It happened on Wednesday. The first and last sections in reality and the thought trail back to being 16 in my head. I was reminded of Ted Hughes’ poem The Thought Fox. I did sit down with a blank page and ended up with this. But because I’m not a brooding man of nature like Ted, mine was inspired by an awkward, shy, encounter with a stranger while I was out running. Any possible embarrassment compounded immeasurably by wearing leggings and a bobble hat. I have been thinking for a while about writing a song that doesn’t follow any sort of conventional structure, no verses, chorus, bridge or even rhyme. It so happened that this came out in this way. There is the odd internal rhyme but not much else, and it’s very conversational. I’m not sure it could even be called a song, but it does capture a moment, it’s subsequent thought and effect on our actions in the present moment. Wouldn’t it be great if there was always the time to do that?

I’m up for suggestions for a better title. I would love something that captures the good natured bewilderment of both the stranger and my grandfather when they thought I was making loving open gestures to them – when in reality I was just being functional.

I suppose this is a good song for Valentine’s Day – it’s about keeping open and loving despite yourself.  So Happy Valentine’s Day!


Written and performed by Christopher Green. Published by MCPS.



At the corner, another runner.  We stop
I gesture to say, after you.
He looks at my hand then tag taps it
Like we’re in the Olympics
I’m somehow ashamed as I watch him go
Then I remember

My grandfather and I, side by side in his car
The gulf of my 16 and his 60
Nothing in common, except our hair and our skin
I get out at school
Reach down to pick up my glove he hasn’t seen
He takes my hand and holds it
He never does that
Was he always looking for a chance to show his love
That I never gave him?
No wonder I cried when he died
I touched his hair and his skin

But this morning after the running
I was going to leave without a kiss goodbye
Then I walked back upstairs and reached out my hand
You pulled me into you
Kissed my hair, stroked my skin

We can’t leave these things to chance


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