i want to sing a song worth singing,
i’ll write an anthem worth repeating.
i’ve spent my whole life searching desperately
to find out that grace requires nothing of me.
—“One,” Sleeping At Last
More yardwork, more podcasts. Today’s included the exposition of Ryan O’Neal’s exquisitely detailed process in building the song “One,” which reminds me so deeply of my B that I cry every. single. time. I hear it, even listening on repeat.
Today I was noticing “song worth singing,” “anthem worth repeating.” O’Neal didn’t mention it in the podcast, but that modifier rang One-ly true to me — I can hear: what’s the point of just singing? Or more critically, creating an anthem that comes and goes, and doesn’t leave a mark? Why would you bother? What a waste of energy!
I’d been describing B last night to folk who don’t yet know her. She sounds like a cross between the Energizer Bunny and those people on the cover of Fast Company. She’s not, though — I don’t think? Not the EB, certainly, and not driven in the ways that the entrepreneurs I’ve known and know of are driven.
But she wastes few motions.
That’s how you aim to finish a double-major in four years.
I pulled weeds and thought some more. About how B delights in her social groups — the clubs she’s joined — clubs she searched out in part because she assessed that more socializing would be wise and healthy. And yet she’s not utilitarian, or transaction-focused…?
“…grace requires nothing…”
I used my heel to kick-stomp dirt back into the tree-aeration holes. She has a firm handle on the lying perfectionist voice in her head, but what about the one whispering optimization? The one saying, sure, not perfect, but definitely better….
If Sabbath (rest) is a gift that, like grace, requires nothing — that is meant for time without goal or purpose, what would it take for my One-liest to unwrap that gift and say, “How amazing! Thank you! I’ll sit right down and explore” ?
Maybe reading a novel is close enough. For now.