This is one of my oldest lyrics. In fact, it is the oldest one that I am willing to share with anyone anymore. I have older ones; I have been writing songs since I was six years old, but most of those are too…I’m not sure what the word is for them. Maybe “embarrassing”, or “naïve”, or “underdeveloped.”
Besides, I threw away most of my really old lyrics. Twice, actually.
I started writing songs and poetry when I was six, as I just mentioned, and by the time I was a teenager, I decided that I would rather die than to let my friends see those old lyrics. And so, in a panic that I cannot explain to this day, I tossed them all away. Such a shame, really, considering that there was no reason to believe that any of my friends would ever find a binder of lyrics hidden at the bottom of one of my dresser drawers, and then read them, then share them with the entire school, then laugh at me, and then mock me as I literally died.
The second time was more tragic. I have talked before about my love/hate relationship with my Muse. I write and write and write, and for what? No one ever hears my songs, so why do I keep writing? My Muse pushes me, that is why. And some days I love her for it, and some days I hate her.
About 7 or 8 years ago, I resigned myself to the sad fact that I would never play music in front of people again, and therefore, songwriting was a stupid waste of time. To seal the deal, I threw away an old briefcase filled with lyrics dating back to about 1983, and everything else up to 2005. That includes various drafts, notes, and completed lyrics that I never used.
All thrown away.
There is nothing that I can do about it now, but I sure regret those impetuous moments. I wish that I could have them back.
I have continued to write songs, and I have even gone to perform at a couple open mics.
I’m telling you; love/hate.
I should have that tattooed on my knuckles. Or my forehead.
Anyway, a few older lyrics survived—even some that I do not like very much—but this is the oldest that I still like.
I, of course, have grown quite a bit as a writer since this song was written, but I am still proud of the playful lyric that I managed to construct. I hope the imagery strikes something in you as you read it. I’ll let your imaginations try to figure out the meaning.
The music is pretty cool too, but I’ll have to wait until I have a useful computer before I can share that with you.
Anyway, all the way from 1988, here is “No Change Thing.”
No Change Thing
By: Joel C. Marckx
We did pretty good with the tools we had
Trying to have fun, but it’s going bad
Everybody smiled when I was feeling sad…but it’s okay
‘Coz I really didn’t change a thing
You cannot go to Hell and walk out smiling
Just prove to yourself that you weren’t lying
You may not get to talk because you think that you’re dying…but it’s okay
‘Coz it wouldn’t even change a thing
Everybody’s just cheering me on
Like for some game show prize
But there’s lights flashing on the coroner’s car
And spirits spinning from the sky
And it didn’t really change a thing
When I could walk, I could hardly speak
When I could talk, I couldn’t stay on my feet
Friends just ignored me to try to keep their peace…but it’s okay
‘Coz I could never change a thing
And when I finally came back from the ends of the Earth
I really didn’t think that I should say a word
So, I tried to pass it off as my greatest work…and it’s okay
How could I have changed a thing
It must have happened a thousand times
It was a first time for me
I didn’t know if I could live with it
And I’ll never feel so safe
But it will never, ever change a thing