Friday, July 4, 2008

4th of July

4th of July (by Dave Alvin, performed by X)

She's waitin' for me
when I get home from work
oh, but things just ain't the same
She turns out the lights
and cries in the dark
won't answer when I call her name

On the stairs I smoke a
cigarette alone
Mexican kids are shootin'
fireworks below
Hey baby, it's the Fourth of July
Hey baby, it's the Fourth of July

Whatever happened I
dry your tears and baby
walk outside, it's the Fourth of July

That's a song I've listened to every year on the 4th of July for at least 10 or 15 years now, and its always spoke to me of being a song about reconciliation. I was just now outside watching the neighborhood fireworks, and my mind drifted to how the fireworks are symbolic of "the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air" and how the 4th of July really commemorates the start of the country's pursuit of independence, whereas we really don't celebrate September 3rd, when the Treaty of Paris was signed in 1783.

The fireworks also brought to mind another song lyric, from XTC's All of a Sudden:

Life's like a firework,
You're only lit once,
And you must stand and radiate correctly.

For almost nothing is more fleeting than a firework -- ignited, flying to the sky, exploding into brilliant colors and thunder, then cooling to embers and ash and falling to earth. The XTC boys are right... in many ways, life is fleeting, and you really just have the one chance to do it, so make the grandest display and noise you can while you can, for soon your ashes will fall to earth.

July 4th weekend really marks the start of my current photographic endeavors, three years now. As I've said before, I'm slowing down the shooting for the next couple months to try to catch up on editing, avoid the worst of the summer heat, and try to start planning ahead for year four...

...and whatever happened, I apologize.