As a child, one of my favorite things to do was write poetry. In school we learned about all the different forms of poetry such as sonnets', free verse, limericks etc We studied a poetry unit in English class pretty much every year from grade one on and every year after learning more about poetry I left school feeling inspired to write my own poems just for the fun of it. I lived only a block and a half from my elementary school and probably composed at least five different haikus all in my head in the short walk to and from school each day. Unlike science and mathematics, poetry was something that came naturally to me. I loved the satisfaction of joining words together using rhyme and the rhythm and cadence of the stanzas as I spoke them aloud. Although I didn't comprehend it at the time, writing poetry was life-giving to me. It was something I excelled at and it filled me with joy.
When I was in fourth grade, after handing in a compilation of my poems to my homeroom teacher to be marked, she said to me these words which have stuck with me ever since "You could turn these into songs you know." At the time I simply disregarded the remark. "I'll never be a songwriter" I thought to myself. "That would require me to sing... possibly in front of people!" Nearly nine years later, I've found myself ready to graduate college from a three year course in Song Writing AND releasing a professionally produced album of my original songs. (April 25th, 2019) Crazy how life turns out sometimes.
Sometime between fourth grade and now, I've not only learned how to take simple words and transform them into lyrics, I've also learned that a lot of my life experiences, good and bad can be transformed into something beautiful. A couple tracks on my upcoming album were written from struggles and hardships I've faced in my personal life. A wise man once said to me "Great songs are derived from truth, whether it be people truth or God truth" For many people, songs can be great companions because it's easy to feel alone in our darkness, but then comes along a song that says "hey, me too" and I think there's something truly beautiful about the way a song can express the feelings we may not know how to express on our own. That is why it is so important that writers write what they know. My best advice to any writer whether you're a poet, novelist, blogger, and especially to you songwriters; Seasons of darkness will come, they just will. They may last a week, a month, or maybe a year. Keep writing. Seasons of blessing and joy will come too. Keep writing. There are probably many others souls who are going through the same things we are, so treasure your memories and experiences the good and the bad because... you could turn these into songs you know.