Weekly Writing Challenge: Get Out The Map

Music is powerful: it conjures memories, emotions, and people and things of the past. It’s not only a trigger, but an outlet to express who we are. For this challenge, pick one song and write about it — or use it as inspiration for a post. The track may be personally meaningful, or remind you of something, someone, or some event you can look back on. Or maybe you’re drawn to a song’s lyrics and want to use them as a springboard for a short piece of fiction. Or a poem. Or a free-write.

Before the age of iPhones, my friends always knew better than to write down my address in pen.  I moved around a lot and loved it.  They called me the wanderer because I simply just wanted to go places, even though I couldn’t afford it most of the time.  I’d get in my car and drive 500 miles if the mood struck me because it was a Friday and I had enough gas in my car, and someone would be waiting for me when I got there with a cup of coffee, a warm bed and a few days spent laughing.

When I first heard this song, I was in New Mexico and asking myself if I was willing to move and make my home in Alburquerque for the doctor I had fallen head over heels over had asked me to.  For some reason, many of the Indigo Girls’ music returned me to me at that time and many of them, through the course of our relationship, symbolized where we stood, as we transitioned from one point of the relationship to the next.  From elation and joy to pain and despair, the Indigo Girls captured them all, though this, Get Out the Map, was the start of it.  For it was to be the beginning of an adventure that I’d never forget.

And though in the end, our love didn’t last – and I never ended up in New Mexico permanently (something my clients admitted later on they were secretly hoping would never happen) – the songs and their meaning remain strong.  Just as this one is as strong as the first time I heard it, when I rolled the windows down and sang at the top of my lungs, knowing that with this man to whom I had fallen in love with, who never ceased to tell me how much he loved me, the lines “I’m going to love you good and strong while our love is good and young” rang so true it hurt.

Get Out the Map – Indigo Girls

The saddest sight my eyes can see is that big ball of orange sinking slyly down the trees
Sitting in a broken circle while you rest upon my knee this perfect moment will soon be leaving me
Suzanne calls from Boston the coffee’s hot the corn is high
And that same sun that warms your heart will suck the good earth dry
With everything it’s opposite enough to keep you crying or keep this old world spinning with a twinkle in its eye
Get out the map get out the map and lay your finger anywhere down
We’ll leave the figuring to those we pass on our way out of town
Don’t drink the water there seems to be something ailing everyone I’m gonna clear my head
I’m gonna drink that sun I’m gonna love you good and strong
while our love is good and young
Joni left for South Africa a few years ago and then

Beth took a job all the way over on the West Coast
And me I’m still trying to live half a life on the road
I’m heavier by the year and heavier by the load.
Why do we hurtle ourselves through every inch of time and space
I must say around some corner

I can sense a resting place
With every lesson learned a line upon your beautiful face
We’ll amuse ourselves one day with these memories we’ll trace
Get out the map get out the map and lay your finger anywhere down
We’ll leave the figuring to those we pass on our way out of town
Don’t drink the water there seems to be something ailing everyone
I’m gonna clear my head I’m gonna drink the sun
I’m gonna love you good and strong while our love is good and young

Weekly Writing Challenge

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