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Steve Key: Songs/Lyrics

Your Poetry

(Steve Key)
June 25, 2015
Steve Key

East of Eden book coverJanuary 2015, I was on my way to a songwriters retreat in Ben Lomond, for more about the retreat go to: http://www.listeningroomretreats.com/

I was thinking about an assignment, a show at the end of the month in Santa Barbara, where I'd be performing songs inspired by the book "East of Eden" by John Steinbeck. So on the day before the retreat, I sat in my motel room in Santa Cruz, I wrote this song, inspired by these lines from Steinbeck:

 

pg. 280-81
Tom wrote secret poetry, and in those days it was only sensible to keep it secret. The poets were pale emasculates, and Western men held them in contempt. Poetry was a symptom of weakness, of degeneracy and decay. To read it was to court catcalls. To write it was to be suspected and ostracized. Poetry was a secret vice, and properly so. No one knows whether Tom’s poetry was any good or not, for he showed it to only one person, and before he died he burned every word. From the ashes in the stove, there must have been a great deal of it.

(pg. 280-81)  Tom wrote secret poetry, and in those days it was only sensible to keep it secret. The poets were pale emasculates, and Western men held them in contempt. Poetry was a symptom of weakness, of degeneracy and decay. To read it was to court catcalls. To write it was to be suspected and ostracized. Poetry was a secret vice, and properly so. No one knows whether Tom’s poetry was any good or not, for he showed it to only one person, and before he died he burned every word. From the ashes in the stove, there must have been a great deal of it.

 

 

Was it something you did
When you were a kid
And you kept it hid
So no one would know
Was it something you tried
Like a hobby on the side
Until one day you decided to let it go
CH Did anyone read your poetry
Did you save even one in your memory
Penny for your thoughts, a dime if it rhymes
Did anyone read your poetry
I’ve seen words come alive
They laugh and sing and cry
The creative mind flies until it crashes
The places and the names
The silly word games
All get fed to the flames until it’s ashes
CH
They say when love goes wrong
At least I’ll get a song
And someone to sing along with my sadness
Maybe it’s too revealing
Or no one cares what I’m feeling
Or maybe it’s a way of dealing with my madness
CH

Was it something you did

When you were a kid

And you kept it hid

So no one would know

Was it something you tried

Like a hobby on the side

Until one day you decided to let it go


CH Did anyone read your poetry

Did you save even one in your memory

Penny for your thoughts, a dime if it rhymes

Did anyone read your poetry

Verse 2: I’ve seen words come alive

They laugh and sing and cry

The creative mind flies until it crashes

The places and the names

The silly word games

All get fed to the flames until it’s ashes (to CH)

Verse 3:They say when love goes wrong

At least I’ll get a song

And someone to sing along with my sadness

Maybe it’s too revealing

Or no one cares what I’m feeling

Or maybe it’s a way of dealing with my madness (to CH)