Artistic realism about romance – Paul Simon

I’m too old for romance, but for young people who might be reading… a sampling of snippets of Paul Simon lyrics about romance. PS keepin’ it real:

From “Still Crazy After All These Years”

I’m not the kind of man
Who tends to socialize
I seem to lean on
Old familiar ways
And I ain’t no fool for love songs
That whisper in my ears
Still crazy afler all these years

From “Train in the Distance”

Two disappointed believers
Two people playing the game
Negotiations and love songs
Are often mistaken for one and the same
Now the man and the woman
They remain in contact
Let us say it’s for the child
With disagreements about the meaning
Of a marriage contract
Conversations hard and wild
But from time to time
He makes her laugh
She cooks a meal or two
Everybody loves the sound of a
train in the distance
Everybody thinks it’s true

And my favorite… from “You’re the One”

Nature gives us shapeless shapes
Clouds and waves and flame
But human expectation
Is that love remains the same
And when it doesn’t
We point our fingers
And blame blame blame

A callous soul might think these words cynical, but they’re not. They’re just a little edgier and more organic than the rarefied imaginations of the sentimentalist. And more true. If you doubt, then just wait until you, like Joni Mitchell, have looked at love from both sides.

9 comments to Artistic realism about romance – Paul Simon

  • Hey man. Love is a battlefield!

    And how about Jackson Browne “Fountain of Sorrow”

    “Now the things that I remember seem so distant and so small
    Though it hasn’t really been that long a time
    What I was seeing wasn’t what was happening at all
    Although for a while, our path did seem to climb
    But when you see through love’s illusions, there lies the danger
    And your perfect lover just looks like a perfect fool
    So you go running off in search of a perfect stranger
    While the loneliness seems to spring from your life
    Like a fountain from a pool”

    I am 51 years old and still a hopeless romantic. My wife gets so tired of being the man around the house.

    But just like God and Popeye, “I am what I am!”

  • How ’bout some lyrics about love between gay and straight? Focus on the Family’s ex-gay road show Love Won Out will come to an end in Birmingham tomorrow. Truth Won Out’s Wayne Besen spoke on the subject at UAB yesterday. The only way I know is due to the fact that my sister is a James Dobson fan and plans to attend the FOTF event.

  • How ’bout some lyrics about love between gay and straight?

    What, like Frankenfurter, Brad and Janet?

    Wayne Besen at least deserves a link.

  • jadarm

    Please don’t forget the all-time classic folks:

    Well everybody’s heard about the bird !
    Bird bird bird, the bird is the word !

    Everybody’s heard about the bird !
    Bird bird bird, the bird is the word !

    Don’t you know about the bird?
    Well everybody’s heard about the bird !

    Bird bird bird, the bird is the word !
    Bird bird bird, the bird is the word ! Yeah !

    Well everybody’s heard, about the bird !

    Don’t you know about the bird?
    Well everybody’s heard, about the bird !

    Bird bird bird, the bird is the word !
    Bird bird bird, the bird is the word ! Go!!


  • Here’s the one I’ve been obsessing on lately: A World of Hurt. It starts:

    Once upon a time, my advice to you would have been go out and find yourself a whore
    But I guess I’ve grown up, because I don’t give that kind of advice anymore

    and eventually gets to:

    So if what you have is working for you, or you think that it can stand a reasonable chance, and whatever’s broken seems fixable and nothing’s beyond repair
    If you still think about each other and smile before you remember how screwed up it’s gotten or maybe dream of a time less rotten
    Remember, it ain’t too late to take a deep breath and throw yourself into it with everything you got

    It’s great to be alive

  • Good lyrics… I’ve never heared of DBTs before… how is the music?

  • Skimming through your post, I was a bit surprised not to find Graceland:

    She comes back to tell me she’s gone,
    As if I didn’t know that
    As if I didn’t know my own bed,
    As if I’d never noticed,
    The way she brushed her hair from her forehead,
    And she said losing love
    Is like a window in your heart,
    Everybody sees you’re blown apart
    Everybody sees the wind blow,

    I’m going to Graceland…

  • I’m a fan, smijer, and a bit biased: I think they’re great. There are at least two free tracks on this page here, “The Great Car Dealer War” and “George Jones Talkin’ Cell Phone Blues”. One is very country and pretty funny, the other is more rockish and quite serious. That’s not the band’s full range, but if you love or hate thsee tracks, you’ll probably feel the same way about the band. If you’re not sure what you think from those, I think there’s a live show by them on the NPR site somewhere. If you want to try an album, I’d especially recommend The Dirty South or Brighter Than Creation’s Dark.

  • Dang it. I don’t know why my html didn’t work, but that link up there is active. Let me give it one more try: Here.

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