I went last night to see The Exorcism of Emily Rose. Whether I like it or not is not the issue. I could spend a long time taking it apart from the spire of my disbelief, but I'm not going to. As to it's veracity, I could deconstruct that after 20 minutes with google, but you can do that yourself. It's role as propoganda is a little offensive. It's a little frustrating that I've spent a lot of my life dealing with and researching faith and it's shortcomings, so I hate to see the sound bite approach to all of these devisive nuances of dogma. All that aside, I was entertained and perhaps most offended at the revelation of sources I borrow in my song writing.
At the end of the film a segment of Philippians 2 Verse 12 was on the tombstone of the title character. The full verse is:
"Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling."
King James Translation
I found the verse through Soren Kiekegaard's work Fear and Trembling and borrowed the image heavily for a song with the same title. I used the idea of taking pains in life to find some healing on a grass roots level in dealing with my own history. There. I've outed a source. Just so long as no one starts reading T.S. Eliot with any regularity I may be safe. My song is available on the website.
I more aspire to write songs that sound natural or conversational, but with all of the thought behind them that so often leads me to alienation. I try to translate all that is geek about me into a more digestable parlance. If you should stumble over my back stories, please be still about them.
Now, the odd part of the whole evening was standing outside the theater talking wih Greg and Krista and Bucket and the song coming up in conversation. Fear and Trembling is one of my very few wholly autobiographical songs. I was telling about where I used to run off and sneak cigarettes as a kid and Greg commented that sometimes I tell a story that he already knows through a song. I think I alluded to how strange it is that my friends know me through a body of work I've done in the interest of making something beautiful. (Not at all that eloquently, of course, otherwise I'd be a speaker and not a writer.) All of this happened before we saw the film.
I wonder how it is that sometimes this serendipity just kind of smiles. I think about when I worked in restaurants and some menu item would sit in print with no interest from any patrons until some random Tuesday where the kitchen would have to make it 6 times at lunch alone. I imagine this could be evidence of faith if one were inclined toward that, but to me it's further corroboration that the universe is random and we are all subject to the whims of some great magnet. On a long enough time line even the random stuff has to line up every now and again.