“Unless there comes a track that has even more meaning to me personally, “Kiss from a Rose” will be what I’ll walk out to at my wedding” – AnJuan Thomas
I wrote those very words in the epigraph 1 ½ years ago. I was using one of my Flashback Friday posts on what may very well be Seal’s most recognizable track. For the entirety of my 20s, the track resonated with me as I tried, with brutally unsuccessful results, to navigate my dating and relationship life after the death of my first love. Because so many dates and relationships went awry, I found myself literally all alone. My heart—as it pertains to being malleable enough to love unconditionally—was definitely becoming hardened by the experience. As I alluded several months back, the lyrics pretty much applied to everything I went through in my loneliness…and even when Mercedes arrived on the scene.
I honestly had every intention for “Kiss from a Rose” to be what I walked out to at my wedding. I’ve written this in Triumphs & Tribulations on a few occasions. I’ve seen visions of myself, my best man, and the officiant walking down the aisle at the point when Seal hits that “Baby/I compare you to a kiss from a rose on the grey”. It was always a happy thought. But then I went to go see Spectre last night. In the opening scene, after Bond kills Marco Sciarra, he’s flying in a helicopter over Mexico City as the title theme plays. The track is “Writing’s on the Wall” by Sam Smith. Listening to the lyrics on the film version, I immediately felt a connection to it. When I got home after seeing the film, which is definitely a candidate for New Film in The Best of 2015 series that kicks off in 3 weeks, I researched the track. Upon seeing the lyrics in word format and listening to the long version, I made the decision to make it the track that I’d walk out to for my wedding this coming summer. As much as “Kiss from a Rose” meant to me, “Writing’s on the Wall” means more for that specific moment.
To understand why I came to that decision, I suppose you have to understand my interpretation of those lyrics. Verse 1 goes…
“I’ve been here before/But always hit the floor/I’ve spent a lifetime running/And I always get away/But with you I’m feeling something/That makes me want to stay/I’m prepared for this/I never shoot to miss/But I feel like a storm is coming/If I’m gonna make it through the day/Then, there’s no more use in running/This is something I gotta face”
My interpretation of that is that I’ve been in this situation before, where I’ve been in a serious dating relationship situation (I’ve been here before). But, inevitably, those situations always ended prematurely…often very abruptly (But always hit the floor). I’ve spent a considerable amount of my adult years running away from the consequences—the hurts and anguish—of those relationship fallouts (I’ve spent a lifetime running) and I’d say I’ve done a great job separating myself, in a physical or geographic sense, from the women that have hurt me or from the potential of getting hurt, at large (And I always get away). With Mercedes, there’s an “it factor” about her (But with you I’m feeling something) that makes me want to stay in place as opposed to fleeing as I usually do (That makes me want to stay). I’ve spent my entire life as an adult scheming for this moment (I’m prepared for this) and I approached each dating and relationship situation in hopes that it would get to this moment (I never shoot to miss). As previous history has brutally reminded me, I have to expect that a potential troubling moment is on the horizon (But I feel like a storm is coming). If I’m to see myself through it (If I’m gonna make it through the day), then I have to do something I’ve never done: stay in the fire (Then there’s no more use in running/This is something I gotta face).
Verse 2 goes…
“A million shards of glass/That haunt me from my past/As the stars begin to gather/And the light begins to fade/When all hope begins to shatter/Know that I won’t be afraid”
My interpretation of that is every individual moment of personal heartbreak and anguish (A million shards of glass) from The Lost Decade of Dating still resonates deep inside of me in a place where only Triumphs & Tribulations has access (That haunt me from my past). When the dark periods ascend (As the stars begin to gather) and the happy times seem distant (And the light begins to fade), when it seems like the goal is lost (When all hope begins to shatter), I won’t be afraid to put it on the line to save love (Know that I won’t be afraid).
The chorus goes…
“If I risk it all/Could you break my fall?/How do I live?/How do I breathe?/When you’re not here I’m suffocating/I want to feel love run through my blood/Tell me is this where I give it all up/For you I have to risk it all/’Cause the writing’s on the wall”
My interpretation of that is if I put the entirety of my love out there (If I risk it all), would you protect my heart (Could you break my fall?). How am I to get through my day-to-day with you (How do I live?/How do I breathe?) when I seem to lose myself when I’m away from you (When you’re not here I’m suffocating). I want to feel love in places I’ve never felt it before (I want to feel love run through my blood). Is putting the entirety of the love inside of my heart out there the way to it (Tell me is this where I give it all up). For the woman I’ll soon marry, this I’ll do in a heartbreak (For you I have to risk it all) because it’s that time (‘Cause the writing’s on the wall).
Nothing against “Kiss from a Rose” or even P.M. Dawn’s “I’d Die Without You”, which was a consideration before I became fixated on Seal’s track, but Sam Smith’s 007 theme fits the moment perfectly for me. My entire love history rests in the words…and even the music composition of the song adds the dramatic effect I’ve always imagined for the moment. I can’t wait to walk out to it in June.