The topic we decided on was to write about a loved one passing away. This is a topic each one of us in the group have experienced at some point and almost everyone has experienced the feeling of loss at some a point in their lives.
Ophelia sent across lyric ideas to myself and Sarah, her lyrics being personal to her situation of a recent passing of a loved one. This being such a sensitive and raw subject it soon became apparent that it would be difficult to push forward ideas when it came to the lyrics. I straight away gave Ophelia feedback praising the lyrics and song that she had written as for me knowing the situation it was lovely to see her using music as a way of releasing her emotions which is something I know all too well.
These are the lyrics that were presented to us:
The lyrics in the first verse set the scene of being by a grave, ‘Flowers lay delicately across the stone’ and ‘unkept garden’. These two lines are the ones that feed real emotion for the reader, the idea of delicate flowers across hard stone and that they are in a unkept garden, shows to me personally a real experience of being at a grave. The use of the work ‘garden’ really shone for me as this is a gentle word used by many to describe a grave. (as obviously grave is a word full of dark connotations whereas garden to me means beauty and life, quite a juxtaposed saying really).
The chorus holds the line ‘memories become muted’ which tells me, you still have the memories of the person but you just can’t hear them anymore as their voice is one that won’t be heard in real life again. A clever and emotion filled lyric.
Verse 2 is where the song becomes personal to Ophelia, she includes a memory about her loved one which only to her will have clarity, to other readers becomes a story about the unknown person. For me this is where you could take the song in two directions, leave it as it is with a personal touch from the writer or change it so it is universal for anyone listening to/reading the song.
The last verse is how the song ends, with the song ending on a verse for me gives a hidden meaning that the person who passed wasn’t ready to pass, they didn’t get to finish and conclude their story (many songs are concluded with the chorus). It also sends an emotion that the pain never goes away, it carries on, just like the song could, another verse suggests that it could go into another one or a chorus.
Lyrically and structurally I think the song is strong as it stands, and how Ophelia sent it me so, there was no need for any change. I took into consideration the situation but also how good I felt the song was, therefore I still would say this was a group task, and being part of a group means knowing when to step back when someone is using music as an expression of emotion which for me is a strong aspect of why I do music, so I understand.
The step I took was to put this song to music, here is what I did by bringing Ophelia’s lyrics into an adaptation by me.