Monday, August 31, 2009

Songs to live by

One of my flatmates once played 'Everybody Hurts' by REM on repeat 24/7. I learnt to play Michael Bolton's "How am I supposed to live without you?" on the piano and tortured my family with tearful renditions for most of 1989. 'Black' by Pearl Jam signified the end of yet another going nowhere relationship at university; Whitney Houston's version of 'I will always love you' was presented on a cassette when my high school love decayed into nothingness, and Radiohead's 'Fake plastic trees' has alternated with Bonnie Raitt's 'I can't make you love me' for every relationship since then.

Popular music taps the rich vein of everyman in each of us that enables and empowers us to sing along as though the lyrics were the purest expression of our individual souls. "Oh, we're halfway there....." The cheesier the words, the more anthemic the melody, the more likely it is that I'll be singing along with great gusto, just waiting for the bridge into the key change before the third chorus.

When C and I got married last year I suggested the simplest of songs for the stroll down the aisle:

Come what may
I will love you until my dying day

Was it tempting fate do you think? Inviting the uncertainty of a cancer diagnosis and the challenge of treatment? Or just a song that gives voice to the plaintive cry of my heart?

I need a new song now. A popular song that we can all understand and relate to that adequately describes the abject horror of Day 5 of Docetaxel. A song that makes us weep and laugh in equal measure, has a catchy tune and fills us with hope. Here goes:

Docetaxel by Mozart and Coburn
(tune: twinkle twinkle little star)

Docetaxel you're the best
Dealing with my cancer guest
Thank you for the runny poos
Hundreds of trips to our only loo
The aches and pains are really fun
Luckily, it's just begun

Docetaxel you're my friend
When will the constipation end?
Feeling like I might explode
Anything, please, to ease the load
Sweaty palms, a new bald patch
I am really quite a catch

Docetaxel, time to talk
I can barely move or walk
Nobody will believe my scene
Years of being a drama queen
Pounding head, thump, thump, thump
thump, spew, poo, chuck, thump, thump, thump

Docetaxel, you're making me sick
Find the cancer, kill it quick
I welcome you into my house
I want to live, if nothing else
To write another song someday
All about love, come what may.


Kyla said...

I remember crying as I listened to you sing 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' to T when he was only a few hours old.

I now offer it back to you.

John said...

Sitting a home - alone
listening to poem
by Leonard Cohn

For Poppy

'ring the bells that you can ring
forget your perfect offering
there is a crack, a crack in everything
that lets the light shine in'

I pray every day that you may hear the bells that can still ring and see through the cracks that let the light shine in.