Question of the Day: Heartbreaker

24 11 2006

Broken Heart
What’s your favorite heartbreak song?

Submitted by esta86.

I’ve already described why Jann Arden’s “Insensitive” is my favorite heartbreak song. You don’t want to hear just that story again, I’m sure.

So, stealing my blogging buddy Jenny‘s idea, how about a complete playlist? This playlist isn’t composed entirely of heartbreak songs; instead, it’s a sort of a chronology of my, um, heartbreaking relationship with the Soulmate-Who-Got-Away (SWGA).

1.) “Insensitive” by Jann Arden – When SWGA dumped me for the first time, circa 1996, the constructive angriness of this song really sort of helped me. It’s a good place to start.

Oh, I really should have known
By the time you drove me home
By the vagueness in your eyes
Your casual good-byes….

2.) “Give Me One Reason” by Tracy Chapman – When I was moving away from SWGA’s hometown, I invoked this song (which was one of my favorites, one we’d heard together and talked about one night) in a letter. SWGA didn’t “give me one reason” to stay, but he later told me he’d considered it.

Give me one reason to stay here,
and I’ll turn right back around.
Give me one reason to stay here,
and I’ll turn right back around.

3.) “You Oughta Know” by Alanis Morissette – The summer after I left—and, really, for a year or two—I was angry with SWGA. I knew we had something together, and I knew he knew it, too. Whenever “You Oughta Know” came on the radio, I empathized with the bitterness in the lyrics.

And I’m here to remind you
Of the mess you left when you went away.
It’s not fair to deny me
Of the cross I bear that you gave to me.
You, you, you oughta know.

4.) “Headed for a Fall” by Jimmie Dale Gilmore – I’ve already blogged about how much I love the album that contains “Headed for a Fall.” I learned, either directly from SWGA or one of our mutual friends, that he was struggling, emotionally. I sort of hoped I was mixed up in that. Or, at least, that he was struggling with the loneliness that was the natural result of his choices (with me and others).

Don’t put your dreams way up there in the clouds.
I don’t think that’s what It’s all about.
You can’t get much higher when you’re so above it all.
I’ll be waiting here when you hit bottom.
I believe you’re headed for a fall.

5.) “The First Cut Is the Deepest” by Sheryl Crow – I’m actually not a huge fan of this song, but it really conveys something important about my post-SWGA relationships. Whether or not he was the first man I fell in love with (and the answer to that is a definite maybe), my feelings for SWGA were constantly with me after that, constantly coloring how I felt about other men. Especially The Ex, whom I met in 1998.

I would have given you all of my heart
But there’s someone who’s torn it apart.
And he’s taken just all that I have
But if you want I’ll try to love again.
Baby, I’ll try to love again but I know
The first cut is the deepest.

6.) “Missing” by Everything But the Girl – Even though I went on with my life, falling in love with The Ex (really), I missed SWGA. And after The Ex and I became serious, I heard much less from and of SWGA.

But now you’ve disappeared somewhere like outer space.
You’ve found some better place.
And I miss you – like the deserts miss the rain.
And I miss you – like the deserts miss the rain.

7.) “Don’t Marry Her” by The Beautiful South – Sometime in the late 1990s, I guess, I heard that SWGA had really fallen for someone, finally. Part of me couldn’t be happy for him.

Those lovely Sunday mornings
With breakfast brought in bed.
Those blackbirds look like knitting needles
Trying to peck your head.
Those birds will peck your soul out
And throw away the key.
Don’t marry her, fuck me.

8.) “Here You Come Again” by Dolly Parton – My relationship with The Ex, probably largely (but, hey, not entirely) because of me, started to disintegrate in 2002 and 2003. Suddenly, SWGA was back, calling me every day. We were talking and laughing. I sometimes think The Ex and I might’ve worked through our problems if it hadn’t been for SWGA’s return into my life. I needed a friend, though, and SWGA was there. I couldn’t help myself.

Here you come again
Lookin’ better than a body
Has a right to.
And shakin’ me up so
That all I really know
Is here you come again
And here I go.

9.) “Something About What Happens When We Talk” by Lucinda Williams – The Ex and I separated, finally, in 2004. SWGA was there for me. We talked and talked. And, as always, those talks seemed like so much more.

Conversation with you was like a drug.
It wasn’t your face so much as it was your words.
Cause there’s something about what happens when we talk
Something about what happens when we talk.

10.) “Broken Arrow” by Rod Stewart – Damn it, I was in love again.

Who else is gonna bring you a broken arrow?
Who else is gonna bring you a bottle of rain?
There he goes moving across the water.
There he goes turning my whole world around.

11.) “Let’s Stay Together” by Tina Turner – I’ve loved this song since, well, 1984. (I was so completely into Tina Turner in the mid-1980s.) The original Al Green version is super, too. It’s here because I was in love, and I wanted it to last.

Let’s, let’s stay together
Loving you whether, whether
Times are good or bad, happy or sad.

12.) “Don’t Explain” by Herbie Hancock, featuring Damien Rice and Lisa Hannigan – This is an old Billie Holiday song, about being in love with someone who probably isn’t entirely true. I’m not saying that SWGA was cheating, at least not physically. I am saying that I was ready to forgive him for hurting me in the past.

Hush now, don’t explain.
Just say you’ll remain.
I’m glad your back, don’t explain.

13.) “I Thought You Were my Boyfriend” by The Magnetic Fields – Suddenly, we were together in New York, and the SWGA was telling me he had doubts. He didn’t know if we were together, if we should be together.

You told me you loved me.
I know where and when.
Come sunrise, surprise surprise, the joke’s on me again.

. . .

I thought I was just the guy for you and it would never end.
I thought we were supposed to be like glue,
I thought you were my boyfriend.
I thought you were my boyfriend.

14.) “Insensitive” by Jasper Steverlinck – We’ve come full circle, sort of. Dumped again by SWGA, this time in 2005. The same song, sung by someone else, seems like a good place to end.

Oh, I really should have known
By the time you drove me home
By the vagueness in your eyes
Your casual good-byes….

I created this playlist over a year ago. For awhile, I was listening all the time. For better or worse, and I’m hoping it’s “better,” I haven’t listened in a good long time. In fact, I’ve been thinking of adding an “I’m better now” song to the end of the playlist. Any suggestions?

And, um, am I better now?

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