October 16th, 2020

Creative Joyous Cat

A Song Not Sung

So, I've been participating in filk circles via zoom, and I got tired of seeing my face from below, so I bought one of those simple plastic gadgets for raising a computer higher on a table. They usually advertise them as lap desks for skinny teenagers or school kids, and maybe I could also use it for watching stuff in bed, though not quite as pictured on the box.

But anyway, what I discovered was that if I put my words and chords on a page in landscape mode, it sits on the keyboard really nicely, right below where I want to be looking so I can see the audience reaction when I know a song well enough to process extra input. So I've been going over songs that I want to sing in the open circles and songs I might want to put on the set list for my Philcon concert, and reformatting them to a two-column landscape format.

In the process, I've found songs that I thought I had in digital format, but actually only have on paper (and rectified that for some of them). But I also found a filk I wrote in February 2016, right before the current occupant of the White House started being the Republican front runner. I was very excited about learning to play this song, and spent a significant amount of time figuring out how to play it on guitar.

By this, I mean figuring out how the original artist had played it (more than one way, actually) and making notes about one of those ways, that my short fingers would be able to just manage if I practiced it a lot, and I planned to do that practice, so I could sing both the original and my filk of it. I was excited about it, I remember that now.

But until I found it (without the notes about how to play the guitar part), I'd forgotten completely about it.

awkward fingers spread wide on a guitar neck

I remember 2016, my growing horror about the person so many Republican preferred to the woman some of my friends dismissed as a "boring grandma". I remain horrified that people would vote for such a blatant con man with such terrible morals. The more I learned about him, the more appalled I was, and the more I hated seeing him on the television, hearing the horrible, hateful things he said and all the lies he told. It was and remains traumatic.

And I learned so many good things about Hillary Clinton, and about how the GOP had been spreading lies about her for her whole life. Seeing how the news people treated her like an inconsequential woman even though she'd been Secretary of State and a U.S. Senator, and treating the con man who'd bankrupted multiple businesses as a man of stature, over and over. That was traumatic too.

I remember picking up a needle and thread, mending clothes, sewing dozens of patches on a silk coat that I loved that was falling apart, calming my fears and praying. I remember wanting to crawl into bed and just stay there when November rolled around, but I'd committed to being at Windycon, doing panels and other things, so I got out of bed, packed for the convention, and headed out into the world.

But I don't remember what I was doing with my fingers to start learning to play this song. I know I wrote notes somewhere, and who knows--I may find them someday. But I don't have them now.

There've been other things in the intervening years, house disasters and financial worries and my Mom getting sick (emphysema and lung cancer, too advanced for treatment), and the daily assault of a man who wants all the attention all the time, has no moral compass whatsoever, and who wants to keep the adulation of people who openly espouse racist, sexist, and other equally horrible -ist beliefs. And now Covid-19.

But I've found this song again, and I want to sing it, so I'm back watching you-tube videos of the original artist, staring at his fingers, trying to do stuff my fingers don't know how to do yet. The way I see it, I should've been singing this song for four years now, and I haven't been. I can't undo any part of the past four years (and if it could, I'd use that power for more important things than this), but I can at least get back to working on this song now.

And I will sing it. Not this weekend. Maybe not this month--and with NaNo coming up, maybe not next month either. But one of these days, once I've finished figuring it out and practiced enough that I can do it justice, I will.


This entry was originally posted at https://wyld-dandelyon.dreamwidth.org/456439.html. Be welcome to comment wherever you prefer, but be warned that LJ has not, under the new management, been sending me notifications of comments. I will check LJ periodically, but life being what it is, commenting on DW will likely get you a faster response.