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The raving thoughts of a misanthropic academic

February 22, 2009

Song of the Week: I'll Say I'm Sorry Now

The Pax Plena Song of the Week, unfortunately, has become as anachronistic around these parts as bipartisanship has become in Washington. But a song I heard last night at the end of a movie left me absolutely stunned - to the point of dropping my malaise. Consider the Song of the Week officially resurrected thanks to Shawn Colvin's I'll Say I'm Sorry Now.

Shawn Colvin is a new artist to yours truly. I would never have heard of her had I not seen the movie. While I am a bit embarrassed at seeing the movie that featured her song, her performance on the piece is riveting. Colvin's voice communicates a certain breezy, melancholy that is innate to the song. Her performance is genuine, and her voice sings in a manner that bespeaks a profound familiarity with the song's content. It is a difficult balance to pull off in any circumstance, but Colvin does so effortlessly.

As with most songs, I appreciate the song's realness. It presents life as an uncertain 'mystery mile', and talks about its inevitable disappointments ('I'm gonna let you down'). But the message of the song is that while the disappointments are inevitable, a simple apology can be used to preempt some of the pain. While the apology is no substitute for the harm, it is sufficient for both singer and listener to know that the apology was said.

In truth, I think this is a lot of what life is about. There are no guarantees. The best we can do is call situations 'like we see em,' press ahead, and offer plenty of apologies for the ineluctable mistakes that we will make. Somehow, Colvin takes these emotions, and makes them make sense.

Please enjoy the Pax Plena Song of the Week, I'll Say I'm Sorry Now.



I'll Say I'm Sorry Now
by Shawn Colvin

I'm gonna let you down
I know that now
Make you cry, I know I will
Why should you believe
I would never leave
Or that I love you still
For all the by and by
Hard as we try
The bough breaks and the cradle falls
For everything I do
That will tear at you
Let me say I'm sorry now
So you can sing your song
You can get it wrong
You can kiss the rock of ages
In your wildest dreams
You might see between
The liars and the sages
You can walk awhile
Down the mystery mile
You can beat the drums of freedom
And in love and war
Through the rush and roar
You just call 'em like you see 'em

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Organic, free-range thought courtesy of your average, coffee-addicted, American Indian, academic. Program Manager @IGPatUA.


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