30 day song challenge: day 28 – a song that makes you feel guilty

Kristin Hersh and Michael Stipe

I don’t really do guilt. Of course I feel bad when I do something wrong – that’s called not being sociopathic – but spending ages fretting about it? I think you have to be very middle class or Catholic to fall into that one. Otherwise, fix it, apologise, learn a lesson and move on. Guilt solves nothing and helps no-one.

So, to find a song that gives me that momentary twinge that tells me I need to take action? Hmm … toughie. I’d have to pick something that goes with days 26 and 27, since my main source of guilt-related discomfort comes from allowing my beautiful guitar to gather dust for nearly a decade.
Your Ghost by Kristin Hersh, featuring Michael Stipe, does give my conscience an unwelcome prod.

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It was one of the first songs I learnt to play on guitar, and since it’s so simple, it’s very easy to play. It will undoubtedly be one of the first I’ll attempt when I finally get myself in gear, brush the dust off, and start playing again.

I bought some strings.

It’s a start.

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Post-script: I prepared this post, along with other recent posts, back in August in anticipation of my current too-busy-to-blog situation. During the first week or two of my maternity leave – before actually giving birth – I did string my guitar, tune it up, and run through a few old songs which came back to me far more readily than I could have expected. Your Ghost was one – though I forgot the words so I couldn’t really sing along. I got that rattling sound you get when you don’t hold the frets down hard enough, and the callouses on the end of my fingers need to re-grow (I had some choice blisters by the end of it), but it was reassuring to know that, however badly, I could still play this song.

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