I love having a soundtrack to my travels. This way, I can hear the song at a later point in life and recall the memories and experiences I had while on the road. Typically, the most poignant songs for me are the ones that have an aching or longing theme, particularly for home or a person.
There are a couple of songs that I loved during my trip to the United Kingdom, but the first song I’m going to showcase is… Astral Weeks by Van Morrison. If you’ve never heard this work of art (or if you have) take a listen below…
I heard this song while I was staying in Edinburgh, Scotland (shout out to BBC Radio Scotland). Having been raised on Van Morrison (shout out to my mama), he already holds a special place in my heart. However, I only recently started to really explore his music catalogue. When I heard this song on the radio, it blew me away. I had heard it before, but never really listened. The melody of the guitars, the flute chirping along in the background, the fluttering strings – it puts me in a mind for spring. A blindingly sunny, bluebird skies kind of day.
And then the lyrics. It’s a song about a woman that Van is watching as she goes about her domestic life and caring for her child. It listens like a love song, but not a love that has happened in this place or time (“In another time, in another place” are lyrics Van repeats toward the end). As such, the word “astral” is defined as relating to or resembling the stars. In addition, the astral plane is “a supposed non-physical realm of existence to which various psychic and paranormal phenomena are ascribed, and in which the physical human body is said to have a counterpart.” It’s a song about a deep desire for a love that is not of this world, time, or place.
The following lyrics solidify my love of this song, and highlight my longing feelings of home and the people I love while I’m traveling.
From the far side of the ocean
If I put the wheels in motion
And I stand with my arms behind me
And I’m pushin’ on the door
Could you find me?
Would you kiss-a my eyes?
This song conveys the desire for love, the desire to want to be with someone that you cannot be with in this very moment.
Give the song a listen and let me know what you think.