song by song – small doses

smalldosespic

Lyrics:

Small Doses

Amongst the weeds, in the spot where you last left me
Broken heart cardboard cut out
Paint by numbers and draw a line around it when you think you’ve got it
Glue them back together and draw a line around it
When you think you’ve got it

when I come undone when I come undone when I come
when I come undone when I come undone

Absent father, distant mother well we all have got them
The shapes we cut out when we muck about
Paint by numbers and draw a line around it when you think you’ve got it
And glue them back together and draw a line around it when you think you’ve got it

But I can’t make it out yet
And it feels like a silhouette
That takes me by surprise
Help me hear me out

I come alive when you are near me
But I am like a deer in the headlights
Paint by numbers, draw a line around it when we think we’ve got it

And glue them back together, draw a line around it
When you think we’ve got it

But I can’t make you out yet
And you feel like a silhouette
That comes up from behind
Help me heal me help me hear me out

When I come undone

Then I talk a lot

Please come closer in small doses

When I come undone when I come undone

FUN FACTS:

This is a dense song influenced by a number of themes:

  1. Homeopathy – one basic understanding I have of homeopathy is that like treats like and that the smallest dose is the most potent.
  2. Attachment theory (Stan Tatkin and Sue Johnson) – the way we attach to significant others can be influenced by the attachment styles we developed as infants and can be relearned. I identified initially as an Island – one who can be concerned about being overwhelmed by another and so who responds by isolating/shutting down/appearing not to need others. The way to improve this is to adopt a ‘catch and release’ approach and also to approach your loved one in small doses. We really do love being loved!
  3. Collage – through the process of writing these songs, I was starting to make a collage on my bedroom wall (which magically ended up replicating and reinterpreting a collage given to me by my former partner). The first 3 songs on the album address more strongly a break-up and this song refers to collage as a metaphor for the process of relationship. It can feel like something randomly made up as you go along – trying a bit of this, a piece of that….I think I want to be more of a deliberate creator in future.
  4. Turning on the spot – the theme of loss of momentum, being rooted to the spot, unable to progress forward in fear of leaving something behind is a theme that occurs throughout the album and strongly opens this song.

This song still feels a little unfinished for me – I have a sense of a melodic line going through the end that I didn’t add to the recording – maybe live I will add it somehow.

The quote on the post-it note on the image above is from the BBC series River. I watched this wonderful drama over and over during my 2017 year.

Small Doses has a number of time signatures as you can see below – 4/4, 6/4, 5/4, 3/4 so it kept the players on their toes. They responded with some beaut playing.

smalldosessheet

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