Do you remember that song? Talk about heated lyrics. An ode to the King of Rock ‘n Roll, it exuded sex and need with every husky note. It is one of my favorite songs. Besides the fact that I kick ass in singing it on ‘We Sing’, (I also kill Sister Christian), but I am getting off track. Music is a powerful medium. It has been around probably longer than the written word and has the ability to communicate emotion just as well if not better at times.
So it stands to reason that the two would be easily paired, like light and sound, thunder and lightning, music and lyrics. This medium is, as I so readily forget the single most powerful muse in my writing. There is something about music that stimulates the creative past of my soul. It is more than images, or storytelling. It is emotion, feeling captured by my heart and then turned into the building blocks of my story.
When I first started writing, I would lay in bed with my headphones on, my walkman playing and my eyes closed. I would have a pad of paper and pen ready to write down whatever came to mind. Usually it was a conversation, a single line or the image of something dramatic.
Here is a scene I remember writing in bed, I wrote this single scene and the rest of the tale grew from there.
It is a fan favorite and here is the scene, enjoy!
"How was your noon with Donald?" Donna asked finally breaking the silence.
"You don't want to know."
"Yes I do or I wouldn't have asked," Donna replied quietly as Josh turned to her in surprise.
"It was…well it was bad."
"They eluded to the fact that they were in support of an opposing democratic ticket."
"Yeah…how did you know that?"
"I don't know, just logical I guess."
"Yeah well it is logically stupid."
"So you don't agree with Hoynes wanting to run?"
"No, of course I don't." Josh replied in confusion. "Why would you think…"
"I was just curious. Did anything else interesting happen today?"
"Not really, just the same old stuff."
"Oh," Donna replied in disappointment, this was going to be harder than she thought. But then again how could have she expected anything different. He had avoided her for weeks now, why did she think that it would suddenly change. "Is the speech all ready for Saturday?"
"Yeah," Josh replied as they pulled onto her street. Just as he began to park the car there was a fierce beating on the roof of the car, and Josh groaned in frustration.
"It's rain Josh, not acid."
"Yeah well acid or not I am going try and get a spot closer to…"
"Don't worry about it, just park here."
"Just park Josh," Donna replied.
He parked and turned to give her his coat.
“Here…we can make a run for it…” he started when she suddenly got out of the car.
He watched her in confusion before got out also. He found her in the street with her face pointed up as the rain beat down wildly.
"What the hell are you doing?"
"Enjoying the rain."
"Are you crazy!" Josh exclaimed as he pulled his coat up over his head and ran around the car taking her hand. "Donna this is no time to…"
"Why not?" Donna asked him as the rain continued to pour down on them.
"What do you mean why not?"
"It's just rain!"
"What…" Josh replied as he struggled to stay dry within his coat. It wasn't working. Donna just stood there staring at him. Her eyes were glowing against the darkened sky. He was confused, he was panicked, what was she doing? She walked to him and pulled the coat down off his head.
"You are so busy trying not to get wet you aren't…"
"Of course I’m trying not to get wet! You are making me stand in the goddamn rain!"
"No I'm not."
"You got out of the car Josh. You can go inside, you can leave."
"No I can't."
"I'm not going to abandon you here on the side of the street in the middle of the rain!"
"No of course not."
"Then why are you abandoning him?" Donna asked him. Josh stared at her a moment and then he realized what was happening.
"Toby came to see me today."
"He told me about your meeting with Leo."
"Damn it!" Josh screamed in frustration suddenly forgetting about the rain.
"Josh he was just…"
"I know what he was doing! Toby needs to stop finding it necessary to pull you into…"
"At least he trusts me!"
"I was going to tell you…I just…"
"No you weren't! You're so busy trying to decided how to avoid this and predict what is going to happen that you’ve forgotten about everything else!"
"That's what we’re…"
"No it's not! "
"Josh do you believe that the President can do his job?"
"I'm not doing…"
"Answer the question!"
"It's not that simple!"
"Yes it is! If you believe in him than they'll believe in you!"
"Yes I do!” she replied calmly staring at him. “Up until now you stood beside him as he gave every person in this country including you, the will to survive, the ability to think outside the box, to break the rules, and to fight for what we all hold dear. Damn what the republicans say! Damn what the lawyers say!"
"No it hasn't you have."
"That's ridiculous I…"
"Yes you have. You’ve turned into a true fair weather friend," Donna snapped as the rain continued to pour down on them. "You doubt him, and in that you doubt yourself."
"He said come with me, we can do it together. He made you see that you could make a difference, that you can fight the good fight and win. But now because of this you’ve lost that trust. You don't know if you can do this anymore. You don't know if you were ever doing it at all. Not only have you abandoned him, you’ve abandoned yourself!"
"He's a man."
"No, he's the President!"
"That's right, and you once believed that he was the real thing."
"Yes, Josh, he is."
"Why? Because he got some bills passed and stuck his neck out few times when he knew all along it was going to fall apart anyway?"
"If he is that man he would have told us in the beginning! He would’ve had enough faith in us to let us make the right choice. "
"You are looking at him as a fallen leader, but what you don't see that it was never him that made the difference. It was you, all of you! That's what makes him the real thing, because he knew to trust you," Donna said forcing him to listen to her as she locked his eyes within hers.
"You have no idea what you’re talking about!"
"Maybe, I don't but I see what is happening and if you don't do something soon we are going to lose everything!"
"What do you want me to do? There's nothing I can do!"
"You can make them believe again. You can show them that there is a great man still here walking with us."
"I don't know Josh, how do you get a bill passed? How do you convince appropriations to give up millions of dollars that they have no willingness to spend?"
"This is completely different."
"No it's not. It's just changing their point of view, their opinion. All they see is the MS, because they don't know him. Hell, I don't know him, but I know that he was there for you when you need him."
"Neither did he, he is a victim just like you! The only reason that everyone is focusing on it is because that is all anyone has given them to see! You have to make them see past that. You have to see past that, just like he did."
"It's not the same--"
"Yes it is! After Roselyn he sent you out on Gun control, he put you at the head of Hate Crimes. He could have held you back but he didn't because he believes in you, now you have to believe in him."
“Donna I...I don't know if I can," Josh replied as he lowered his head. They were both thoroughly soaked but neither of them seemed to mind anymore. The rain felt good, it was constant and steady on his shoulders, pushing away the fear and the doubt.
"Josh look at me," Donna said as she touched his cheek. "I know that he hurt you but he needs you now. We need you now to lead us out of this storm. You are the only one who can do it."
Josh got lost in her eyes, he felt warm within her embrace against the cold rain, but then his mind screamed in anger. He held it back pulling her close to him. He held her there and just let the rain fall on them not caring anymore about what it meant or how it looked.
He just needed to hold her now. He needed to feel her against him. He knew himself here. His thoughts were calm and focused knowing the difference between right and wrong, standing here he was pulled out of the gray.
* * * *