Songs of Life

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I imagine when we die we find out how in-tune with our hearts we should have been. Not an easy thing to do with all our mere mortal vices getting in the way.

How do we rise above what we are? Can we elevate ourselves and look back down on our lives to see what needs more attention, or less? What's important, what's a waste of time?

I've managed to step onto my own shoulders for a better look, through my music. As a songwriter I frequently, and most certainly unintentionally, write about feelings and experiences from my own life. Sometimes I don't recognize a connection until I'm performing the song or listening to it later on.

Where all these ideas comes from I can't be sure. I always thought that I had to go through many long years of suffering before I could be worth anything as writer, but I found that my song lyrics, and my other scribblings, affect people.

Real writers, those with a genuine knack, are born to be what they are. Maybe sometimes people get more than their fair share of talents. A cruel joke by God? Maybe a test. Which talent will be used the most to affect the rest of the world?

I didn't wake up one day and say I want to write songs, or even these observations. If I did I would likely be a lousy songwriter, or writer in general. Instead I have found that, when inspired, I have a knack for this writing thing. People who have heard my music believe it's among the best they've heard, and they always comment on the poignancy of my lyrics. One fellow who bought my CD remarked, "...lyrically, it's a killer!"

I appreciate these remarks. They make me examine myself more closely, to evaluate my work more carefully, because if people are this taken with my lyrics I must be extra careful what I write the next time around. My words can have great influence, so I want to make sure it's a positive one.

As I look back on my accomplishments, which I still don't think are much (call me humble), I start seeing myself in a different light. Not the kid who was made fun of in school, or the punk who couldn't get his head out of you-know-where quick enough to save himself some real heartache. But I see myself as a growing, learning, human stumbling through a mistake-ridden life that's finally smoothing out in the long run, and there's plenty more to run, so just imagine how much smoother it can get!

Looking down, even in at yourself, however you manage to do it, can help you elevate your position within your own mind. Since we are the masters of our own destiny, isn't that the right place to start? See yourself as the person you want to be.

By examining ourselves we can also learn how much heart we put into living our lives. The more heart that goes in, the less mundane your life will be. But you can't keep your heart to yourself. No light shines in a room without windows, no voice can travel beyond the walls. Affect the world around you and see how the light shines in.

How do we rise above what we are? We rise to what we want to be.

Drew Vics, an artist, writer & musician from New Jersey, writes for, and for other websites online.

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