Taking a walk along Grey Street

imageI heard this song for the first time about 15 years ago and the lyrics registered immediately–I felt so heard, so understood and knew I wasn’t the only person to feel like I did. How could someone with so many talents, with so much going for her and with so many privileges feel so empty? There was no answer in the song, but validation, oh yes.

Grey Street
By: Dave Matthews Band

Look at how she listens
She says nothing of what she thinks
She just goes stumbling through her memories
Staring out onto Grey Street

She thinks Hey, how did I come to this?
I dream myself a thousand times around the world
But I can’t get out of this place.

There’s an emptiness inside her and she’d do anything to fill it in.
But all the colors mix together
to grey
And it breaks her heart.

How she wishes it was different
She prays to God most every night.
And though she swears it doesn’t listen
There’s still a hope in her it might.

She says I pray,
Oh but they all fall on deaf ears
Am I supposed to take it all myself
To get out of this place?

Oh there’s an emptiness inside her
And she’d do anything to fill it in
And though it’s red blood bleeding from Her now,
it feels like cold blue ice in her heart.
When all the colors mix to grey
And it breaks her heart

There’s a stranger speaks outside her door,
Says take what you can from your dreams.
Make them as real as anything
Oh it’d take the work out of the courage.

But she says please
There’s a crazy man that’s creeping outside my door,
I live on the corner of grey street
and the end of the world.

Oh there’s an emptiness inside her
and she’d do anything to fill it in,
and though it’s red blood bleeding from her now it feels like cold blue ice
in her heart.

She feels like kicking out all the windows and setting fire to this life
She could change everything about her
Using colors bold and bright
But all the colors mix together
To grey
And it breaks her heart
To grey.

Grey, not blue, is a much better color metaphor for depression. It is an involuntary, bland and lifeless place tempered by a spectrum of grey–some days feel a bit lighter while others get dark and bleak and the darkness is where the pain is most crippling. It blinds and obscures the ability to see anyone else. Shame, pity and solitary confinement are a heavy, muddy cloak draping and pulling down.

I hope it isn’t redundant to reference song lyrics again.  While I can’t be so histrionic as to say I’ve been “crippled” with grey lately, I have also been in the winter doldrums for sure.  Imagining the connections I can make to other thoughts and heroes, in spite of the chilled dormancy, has helped to prompt and stimulate me, borrow some energy from creative heroes for some inspiration.  And who isn’t inspired by some Dave Matthews?

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