[If there’s one thing I think we all need as we begin this new year, it’s hope. So this week, I’ll AmericanStudy a handful of cultural works which offer stories and images of that vital emotion—share the texts or voices which give you hope for a hope-full crowd-sourced weekend post, please!]
I’m not sure I need to write too much about why I’d start this early 2021 series with a song that features the repeated line, “A long December and there’s reason to believe/Maybe this year will be better than the last.” In a VH1 Storytellers episode, Counting Crows lead singer and songwriter Adam Duritz said of “A Long December” that, “like a lot of songs on the end of an album it's not about everything turning out great, but it at least it is about hope... and the possibilities.” To me, the song’s most hopeful lines are its two final ones: “I can't remember all the times I tried to tell myself/To hold on to these moments as they pass”; “And it’s one more day up in the canyon/And it’s one more night in Hollywood/It’s been so long since I’ve seen the ocean/I guess I should.” Hope, after all, is about imagining something better, not just in the future, but right now—imagining and then acting upon a vision that we can, indeed, make our present and world better, change things, embark on a different path. That’s a collective goal, but it’s also a deeply personal one, as this song beautiful song exemplifies.
Next hope-full text tomorrow,
PS. What do you think? Texts or voices which help you find hope?