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Thursday, 17 July 2014

My New Tattoo

When its carnival season and the nights are long, the big light-up displays strung in between buildings downtown comes into its own. The parades pass under a shooting star brightly lit by dazzling lightbulbs, a symbol of hope and exploration and discovery in a small town held together by hope alone.

The tourists see that light - the brilliant display put on to muse and decorate and entertain. It allures and attracts, sheds its glow on all those that pass underneath it, laughing in the late evening. Then as the night wears on it becomes a beacon for those wending their way home, something to be pointed at and revelled in when one's state is slightly altered.

But then the tourists go home; the little shops close their doors and the outside starts to move a little slower. The posters come down. The lights stop being turned on, and instead of a pulsing gleam of a shooting star - we see its dark outline, a frame where our hope used to be. We see everything that made the illusion possible without the illusion.

A shooting star - a comet - a bright arc that flashes across the sky. Now dark and hollow, and shut down until the world turns warm again.

How could I not want this on my skin?

It's the cover of Recovering The Satellites, Counting Crow's second album - an album which as a whole, and in particular the titular track, speaks of a life in a small town. Talks of the lives of people from somewhere that is just smaller than most, with a few more walls than the average. It's about those people that manage to get away, that stay in orbit for a moment of time before coming back down again. Always drawn back to that little insular place we call home.

That's why I got it.