by Sam N. Yago
Two friends discuss the meaning behind the lyrics of one of Neil Diamond's songs.
|Contest Entry for "The Writer's Cramp"
Prompt: Take one of your favorite songs and write a story or poem related to it.
Word Count: 517
"That Neil Diamond sure is brilliant!"
I set my coffee mug on the table, and paused before responding to Dickey's proclamation. I liked hanging out with my buddy, and usually have a ton of fun with him, but sometimes our discussions go into such inane subject matters that I'm often exhausted taking a ride with him from point to point. With a silent sigh, I ventured into the unknown. "What makes you say that?"
Dickey flashed his pearly whites, as if a precursor to what he would consider a genius explanation for his theory. "He wrote a song about perverted sex that people actually sing in church during weddings."
"Huh?" I heard myself ask as a matter of impulse, and I realized that it was too late to take back any appearance of interest that I may not have wanted Dickey to mistake my having.
"The song is 'Play Me', which he released in the 70s," explained Dickey, edging up from his seat and leaning his arms on the table. "It's a pervy song."
"What are you talking about?" I inquired, irritated with myself for being curious about his often derailed train of thought. "'Play Me' is about a man professing his deep love and submission to a woman whom he thinks the world about. What in God's name would make you think that song is perverted?"
"I'll show you," Dickey calmly said, as he pulled out a folded sheet of paper from his jeans' back pocket. He unfolded the sheet, and briefly scanned it. "Okay, here's one line that I thought was very suspicious: 'I one day woke up to find her lying beside my bed, and I softly said come take me.' That there is an invitation for sex, pal."
I blinked at my friend, and was quietly vascillating on whether to explain to him the beauty of poetry or simply allow him this usual delusion. I decided on the latter. "What else?"
"Okay," Dickey beamed, as he scanned the lyrics on the sheet of paper again. "Here's another: 'I don't know where come lately.' I don't think I have to tell you what the word 'come' also means."
In the gentlest of gestures, I struck my forehead with the palm of my right hand. I should've known better than to encourage Dickey with this theory of his.
He mistook this a signal of sudden realization on my part, and offered what he thought was further proof. "And, here's the clincher: the title of the song itself is so obviously a command he's giving the woman to play with his you-know-what."
"Kill me now," I whispered.
Dickey grinned, refolded the piece of paper and returned it in his jeans' pocket. "It's amazing the hidden messages behind certain songs, eh?"
I simply nodded as I took another sip of my coffee. There clearly was no point in arguing with Dickey on something that he felt very strongly about, and I would rather move on anyway.
"Like, did you know that that other Neil Diamond song, 'Sweet Caroline' is about sadomasochism?"