I got in this really interesting conversation with my friend C on AIM last night. I was listening to Bob Dylan yesterday (and today, and many days) and I told him how I was thinking about what it must have been like to be him, having these connections with women while he’s ramblin’ from town to town, and thinking of them from time to time, but knowing it’d be rather unlikely that he’d hear from them again. There’s something beautiful and romantic in that, and largely it’s something that doesn’t exist anymore.
It’s too easy for people to reconnect with past loves. At his time, which was not long ago at all, he could find a bit of comfort writing a song about a girl, and perhaps she would hear it on the radio some years down the line while she’s doing the dishes and wonder if it’s about her but never be totally sure. If people did reconnect, it seemed like fate’s hand, and had this big beautiful stamp of divine providence. Now it’s the opposite, it seems that if people don’t reconnect, THAT is fate keeping them apart. That’s beautiful in its own way too, but it’s just not the same. Dylan has a lot of songs that give me this feeling, but the most illustrative would be If You See Her, Say Hello. I often jokingly tell friends that if they see so-and-so, kiss him/her once for me, but no one sadly ever gets the reference. But that lyric gets me every time. It’s that longing that is elicited by a memory, where that person is frozen in time for you to revisit whenever you wish, there’s something beautiful about the privacy of that.
C, making an unintentionally pretty typo, wrote, “The age of lost love connections is god. Now is the age of creeping.” Sounds like a lyric for a 21st century lament on the notion that sometimes it’s all too easy to reach your past, and isn’t it better sometimes to have the hazy, sun-dappled memory in its stead?