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From The Singing Car At The Stop Light

(image courtesy celebrity-pictures.feedio.net)

(image courtesy celebrity-pictures.feedio.net)

My wife and I drove the main highway through town one Saturday listening to the radio.

One song started at a long stoplight, a haunting voice and a beautiful melody.

I didn’t know it then but it was Rihanna singing Stay.

The first verse made me blink my eyes the way I do on certain Johnny Cash songs, the National Anthem, and Amazing Grace.

A song I’ve never heard by a singer I didn’t know is making me cry a little? How can that be?

All along it was a fever
A cold sweat hot-headed believer
I threw my hands in the air, said show me something
He said, if you dare come a little closer

Round and around and around and around we go
Ohhh now tell me now tell me now tell me now you know

Not really sure how to feel about it
Something in the way you move
Makes me feel like I can’t live without you
It takes me all the way
I want you to stay

After the first drawn out Staaaaaaay, I held my wife’s hand and told her, “I’m glad you stayed, that I stayed. We’re staying.”

She smiled.

It felt like I just renewed my wedding vows.

The heart wrenching song didn’t stop there.

It’s not much of a life you’re living
It’s not just something you take, it’s given
Round and around and around and around we go
Ohhh now tell me now tell me now tell me now you know

Not really sure how to feel about it
Something in the way you move
Makes me feel like I can’t live without you
It takes me all the way
I want you to stay

Boomers know all about living a life that’s not much. When the counter-culture rejected suburban lifestyles for tribal meet-ups, they lived on communes, grouped together in cheap apartments, or took to life on the road for answers.

They met their perfect Moon Shadow, mourned the love they lost, and still wore their hearts on their sleeves. They lived through the feelings of love you can’t live without and learned from it.

These are the people who bought the original poster that said, “If you love something, set it free. If it comes back, it’s yours. If it doesn’t, it never was yours.”

On one Saturday at a stoplight, Rihanna brought it all back with Stay. I looked at my wife singing along and understood how fragile love can be.

I looked past her at the car in the next lane where a young woman seemed to be singing behind the wheel. And it was the same song. Her chin dropped while she mouthed the word “Staaaay.”

The next verse nailed it. I’d never heard the song before, but it drilled into my heart.

Ohhh the reason I hold on
Ohhh cause I need this hole gone
Funny you’re the broken one but I’m the only one who needed saving
Cause when you never see the lights it’s hard to know which one of us is caving

Not really sure how to feel about it
Something in the way you move
Makes me feel like I can’t live without you
It takes me all the way
I want you to stay, stay
I want you to stay, ohhh

The incredible coincidence of hearing the song and seeing a sad girl in another car sing made me want to help. I pointed her out to my wife and asked her to roll down the window and turn up the radio.

That’s helpful, right? Who else has had similar moments, something you might see in a movie, but never expect in real life?

About David Gillaspie

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