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Source: Adults

Author: Stuart Johnson

Title: Morning Theft - Tribute to Jeff Buckley

It was ten years ago today that a beautiful musician and songwriter, with a beautiful voice went for a swim in the Wolf River, apparently to cool down a little from the hot Memphis sun.
Jeff Buckley was caught unawares by a freak wave of water, caused by the passing of a large tug-boat, and before his friend on the river bank could even comprehend what was happening, Jeff had disappeared beneath the otherwise placid waters, never to re-emerge.
Ironically, his band-mates were in mid-air at the time, flying to Memphis to join up with him and begin the recording of his second album My Sweetheart the drunk. ( An album which did later appear in a fragmented form for obvious reasons. )
The somewhat patched-up content of that posthumous release suggests that it would have been an even more stunning collection of songs than his debut, and technically only album, Grace.

There is much that I could write about the music of Jeff Buckley, a back-catalogue that is cruelly short-lived and limited. You could lose yourself for whole motionless weekends in his distinctive voice and songs that could both be uplifting but also toss you around emotionally like a rag doll.
His was music for those of us who drink red wine straight from the bottle, for those of us who think about things too much, so much so that we've never really properly got on with our lives.
His was music for those of us who are doomed romanticists and purveyors of unrequited love, for those of us who wanted to grab the object of our affections, shake them and implore them to run away with us, to where it didn't matter.
His was music for those of us who cannot realistically see ourselves growing old, cannot see what the future holds for us, and for those of us who just go into each new day hoping that something in this world will surprise us.

Not that this should lure you into thinking his music might be ' depressing '. Jeff was a humourist on and off stage, he would have his audiences laughing between songs. Only when the next song began would he transcend into something both fragile and powerful, almost untouchable.
It is impossible to explain the influence of Jeff Buckley's music on my life. Most who read this, ( if anybody does ) may not even have heard of him.
But this evening I came home from another mind-numbing day at work, cracked open a bottle of wine and suddenly realised the significance of todays date.
Exactly ten years since the largely tepid music world was robbed of a talented young 30 year old genius.
I could not let this anniversary pass without writing some kind of tribute and posting it on this site.
Right now, as I write this, I can imagine his music is blaring out from so many stereos across the world in some kind of vigil of appreciation.

The following is a lyric written by Jeff Buckley, a song that nearly brought this grown man to tears when he heard it.

Morning Theft
Time takes care of the wound, so I can believe
You had so much to give, you thought I couldn't see
Gifts for boot heels to crush, promises deceived
I had to send it away to bring us back again
Our eyes and body brighten silent waters deep
Your precious daughter in the other room asleep
A kiss goodnight from every stranger that I meet
I had to send it away to bring us back again

Morning theft, unpretender left ungraceful
True self is what brought you here to me
A place where we can accept this love
Friendship battered down by useless history
Unexamined failures
What am I still to you?
Some thief who stole from you?
Or some fool drama queen whose chances were few?
That brings us to who we need
A place where we can save
A heart that beats as both siphon and reservoir
You're a woman, I'm a calf
You're a window, I'm a knife
We come together making chance into starlight
Meet me tomorrow night, or any day you want
I have no right to wonder just how, or when
You know the meaning fits, there's no relief in this
I miss my beautiful friend
I have to send it away to bring her back again

Published on writebuzz®: Adults > Features

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