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patterns of ink

How fruitless to be ever thinking yet never embrace a thought... to have the power to believe and believe it's all for naught. I, too, have reckoned time and truth (content to wonder if not think) in metaphors and meaning and endless patterns of ink. Perhaps a few may find their way to the world where others live, sharing not just thoughts I've gathered but those I wish to give. Tom Kapanka

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Crescent Noon

When I was fifteen, in ninth grade, my two older brothers, Paul and Dave moved out of the bedroom the three of us had shared for nearly ten years. My little brother Jim and I began sharing a room, and Dave and Paul set up their twin beds at the far end of the basement. There was no room really, just the bend around the corner by the furnace room door with the dart board. Beside the door was the hanging punching bag we boxed through the years until the leather was rough and spotted from bloody knuckles.

In the corner of the "bedroom," my brother Paul had a stereo on a rickety stand that held his growing collection of albums.

In the fall of 1972, all three of my older siblings left for college on the same day. Paul left his collection of albums in that corner of the basement, and though my room was upstairs, I often found myself in that downstairs "bedroom" lying on my back on the bed beside the stereo, listening over and over to Paul's albums. It was in these months that my fondness for Simon and Garfunkel, the Letterman, and the Carpenters grew--all pretty tame and mellow stuff really, but scores of those songs embedded in my mind the interplay of melody and the rhythm of words.

One little-known song that got in my head forty years ago was "Crescent Noon" from the 1970 Close to You album.  That melancholy song seemed to summarize the months of that first fall and winter with Dave and Paul and Kathy all being so far away. 

Out of nowhere, those haunting words came to my mind yesterday, and hearing them in the clip below took me back to that lonely feeling in a quiet basement in the company of pleasantly-woven words...

Green September
Burned to October brown
Bare November
Led to December's frozen ground
The seasons stumbled round
Our drifting lives are bound
To a falling crescent noon
Feather clouds cry
A vale of tears to earth
Morning breaks and
No one sees the quiet mountain birth
Dressed in a brand new day
The sun is on it's way
To a falling crescent noon
Somewhere in
A fairytale forest lies one
Answer that is waiting to be heard
You and I were
Born like the breaking day
All our seasons
All our green September's burn away
Slowly we'll fade into
A sea of midnight blue
And a falling crescent noon
by Richard Carpenter and John Bettis

The song's simple melody and added harmonies add meaning to the words. The lyrics may seem to lack hope for some listeners in that, on the surface, it simply states...we're born;we live; we die. But in its non-sectarian way it actually speaks of an answer waiting to be heard. Like Nat King Cole's "Nature Boy," I think the answer is to a question about being loved. That song ends with: "The greastest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return." That kind of love is what brings meaning and purpose to the passing of time depicted in "Crescent Noon"... being loved--by God and those He brings into our lives.
12322...478 5-15AM


Blogger Ruth Anne said...

I found your entry this morning as I was looking for the history of this same song. It came back to haunt me yesterday. I think I had almost lost it in my head, but it sprang up whole, and now it is solidly stuck in the front of my mind. Funny how songs do that - attach themselves to places in our hearts.

23/5/15 6:32 AM  

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