Here’s a coincidence.
One year ago today I hiked down to Indian Garden in the Grand Canyon with my backpacker guitar and wrote a song called I’ve Done the Math.
I wrote and recorded the song down at that oasis; wrote it at a picnic table and recorded it just out of earshot of the campers and park rangers.
It was something I always wanted to do, and I was thinking I’d better do I while I still could. I knew that I might soon be leaving Flagstaff for good.
Those circumstances, I think, come through in the song. My marriage was failing—or had already failed. It was hard to tell. Hard for me anyway.
I wasn’t thinking about the song’s first birthday today. Instead, I was digging through some papers and notes that I’d brought to Madagascar with me. I was looking for some documents to help me do some math to bring my marriage to a final conclusion. Instead I found the handwritten lyrics to this song with the date 5/24/14 written in the upper right.
The song got some good feedback over on Songcrafters. But I was up to my chest in the things one has to do when his life is unraveling, so I didn’t give the song much more attention.
So here I am in Madagascar a year later. My life is looking more raveled than unraveled these days.
Interestingly, adding un- to the beginning of ravel does create a word with the opposite meaning — not in this case. Ravel and unravel mean the same thing—like flammable and inflammable.
So what do I mean when I say, “my life is looking more raveled than unraveled these days?” Exactly that.
My backpacker guitar is in storage in Arizona. In Madagascar I have a kabosy, which is about the same size. Maybe it’s time to pick a destination and do another songwriting hike. But first I have to do some math.
Photo Credit: Ted Johnson (CC BY-NC 2.0)