A broken picket fence
A front-row ticket to the war
On who we are
An unexpected call
I never felt it fall
The floor beneath my feet was suddenly gone
If I had known yesterday what tomorrow was to bring
I never would have let you go tonight
Hold each other close
And hold on tight to what you know
In open arms is where the healing starts
The broken dreams
The bleeding hearts
So hold each other close
The streetlights sing regret
For all the things we never said
Before we lost our chance
And I can't wait another second now
I tried to hold it but it's bleeding out
The core of who we are can't do it alone
I haven't done enough to make you see
Just how much you mean to me, no, no
And I don't want to miss another shot
To say I love you 'fore our time is up, no, no
Hold each other close.
I wrote this song in the wake of a series of terrible tragedies, that pummeled our collective consciousness with heartbreak over and over, in such a short period of time. Beginning with the shooting of Christina Grimmie at a fan meet-and-greet, followed just 2 days later by the Orlando shooting, and then the shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castille, and finally the shootings of police officers in Dallas just a couple of days ago. And I'm sure there are more that didn't make the primetime cut.
How do we deal with it? How do we respond to news like this? How do look in the mirror, as the culture we've become, and tell ourselves we don't have a problem? We keep drawing lines in the sand; lines of race, of creed, of class. How do we as a culture recognize that the divisiveness we keep holding so tightly to is not working?
I think it starts with family. For me, that's the gut reaction whenever I see another agonizing headline... I just want to be with my family, to show them how much they mean to me. I love you mom. I love you dad. I love you sis. I love you brother. Do you know that? You see, I can't help but think, whenever something like this happens, what if that happened to me? what if the people I love are suddenly stripped from me, before I get the chance to tell them how much I love them? I never want to have to live with the feeling that I didn't express how much I loved someone before time ran out. I want to hold them, to do life alongside them, to encourage them, to do what I can to see them thrive while we still have time to share together.
And you see, I think that's the key, or part of it at least. Because we are all a family. We all have the same blood. We all share the same home. And it's time to start acting like one. From your closest friends and relatives, to the ones under the streetlights at night, who maybe never had someone to tell them that they're loved. That's where hope can be found. We are all family.
Our time here on Earth is short. And so precious. This song is about making the most of that time, making sure that the people we love know that we love them before it's too late, and making our best effort to show love to an ever-widening circle of people. In open arms is where the healing starts. We need to heal.