STAY GOLD

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This post was supposed to be up yesterday for the S challenge but because I’m on an extremely hectic schedule I didn’t get a chance to.

Do you have a go to song when trying to pull up an emotion? I have a few songs for different emotions. Today I will share one with you.

Whenever I listen to Stay Gold by Stevie Wonder I’m overcome with sadness. The song talks about life and how fast it goes by. One day we are young the next we are old.

The first time I heard this song I was a teenager. I loved the song because it was played in my favorite movie, The Outsiders. Back then the song made me think of the characters journey in the movie. Ponyboy was dreamy and loved to write and read. His favorite poem was Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost.

Johnny was misunderstood. He came from an abusive home and despite his reputation for being a “no good greaser,” he was a gentle soul who loved his friends.

Dallas was the bad boy who caused trouble but always treated Ponyboy and Johnny like brothers.

If you have watched the movie or read the book then you know that Johnny died from complications endured from a fire. He risked his life to save the life of a few children. His death was too much for Dallas to withstand. In a moment of grief, Dallas made stupid decisions that led to his death.

At the end of the movie, Ponyboy is reading aloud a letter written to him by Johnny. The letter talks about how Johnny accepted he was going to die and had no regrets because the lives he saved were precious like “gold.” Johnny tells him to Stay Gold and then the song begins. I fell in love with the greasers and the bond they shared as friends reminded me of the bond I shared with my friends.

Fast forward to six years ago I’m sitting in my father’s t.v. room listening to the song on his computer. He just found out that he needed to get another chest x-ray because the first one was “cloudy,” (he ended up having lung cancer). He heard this song and began to cry. He said “Mar, this song is my life. If I close my eyes I can remember what it was to be young hanging out with my friends, running down a basketball court, finding love for the first time.” He knew his life was coming to an end (long before the tests confirmed it.) His tears fell with each passing lyric and my heart broke.

Whenever I need to tap into that helpless, sad, frustrated, nostalgic emotion I turn on this song and by the time Stevie sings the first word I’m there.

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4 Comments

Filed under A to Z, authors, BLOG, writers, writing, Writing

4 responses to “STAY GOLD

  1. I memorized that Frost poem for the kids I work with, who believe (at 16 – 18) they are invincible. I always wish them to be. But age happens … if we’re blessed. I love how you use your pain positively. I think that is what draws me to writing – everything, even grief and pain, becomes powerful and useful when we write. I think I’d like to reblog this sometime this week if you don’t mind.

    • Maribeth

      I don’t mind at all. I agree. It’s no fun to experience pain or sadness but if we can use our experiences to connect with or help a reader then the negative emotion becomes positive. Thanks for commenting. :)

  2. Songs are powerful and can elicit many emotions. Thanks for sharing your memory. Great post!

  3. Reblogged this on inturruptingcow and commented:
    While I am not participating this time in the A – Z challenge, I couldn’t help but take notice of this “S” post by Maribeth. I love this poem and now, having listened to the Stevie Wonder song, have a fondness for it also.

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