I remember you in moonlight, Dancing by the fire, You stretched your arms up to the sky - An intoxicating gyre. I strummed my old guitar, My voice rose higher, Oh, I remember you, Oh, I remember you… But we’re lost now in distant Seas of city lights, How many souls away? Will your soul brush up Against mine in this life? I’m singing for you now, As snow falls, in Santa Fe. I close my eyes and see you spinning ‘round, A love so close but never found. I don’t want to go back, I just want to hold your hand, And bring you with me here To this holy land. Oh, I remember you Oh, I used to share this world with you… Spinning ‘round, holy ground, A love so close but never found. Ooo, Spinning round, Ooo, holy ground… I remember you in moonlight, Dancing by the fire, You stretched your arms up to the sky - An intoxicating gyre. I strummed my old guitar, My voice rose higher, Oh, I remember you, Oh, I remember you…
One of my favorite things to do as a young child was to spin. There’s something magical about the sense of release, the sense of surrender, and even the dizzying disorientation afterwards. Sometimes I feel disoriented in the modern world, too. As a mom, as a songwriter, as an old soul… I know that things didn’t always feel so disconnected. I know that it didn’t used to be so hard to live into the longings of our souls.
I must confess I think quite a bit about past lives. I think there is some truth to that ancient understanding of the nature of things. In conversations with old-soul friends, and in reading about mysticism, past-life regression, and all, I have felt a pull to understand what my soul has been through. I long to remember who I was… and who we were… those of us who shared lives together, in the past.
I do know that my son and I have been through this all before. He told me when he was 3 and he and I were riding the metro through LA, that “Highland Park” was the name of the street he and I used to live on, out in the country, with lots of animals, including “baca’s.”
This Fall I was watching him dance around the house. He started tap dancing one day, like he knew exactly what he was doing, and said he just remembered it from seeing it one time, a year earlier, on the Muppet show. Another time I saw him spinning and dancing, with his hands in the air, snapping his fingers. I had been trying to figure out what kind of dance he might want to learn. When he did that, I immediately thought of Flamenco. Together, we watched a youtube video of a Flamenco festival in Spain. He started running around, bouncing off the walls, and shouting, “That’s my style! That’s my style!”
That’s when I realized we were in Santa Fe… and that we could probably find someplace to learn Flamenco around here. Not only did we find a Flamenco school, we found a concert to go to that very week. We were hooked.
And then, I started reading about Flamenco. I read that it came from the Roma people… often called Gypsies, who migrated from India throughout Europe, including Spain. It combined Hindu dances with Sephardic and Muslim musical and dance traditions, along with the traditional folk dance of Spain, and became a new, powerfully expressive form of music and dance. I had already sensed that my son’s old soul was recognizing Flamenco, from another life on this planet. But I didn’t realize which culture it came from. When I read that it came from the Roma people, I felt a sudden wave of shock. I felt faint – like I had just stepped into a “thin place” where I could almost reach out and touch a whole different reality.
I remembered conversations with an old-soul friend of mine, who told me that she had seen a past life we shared as gypsies. I had believed her, but it was her vision, not mine. Suddenly I could feel the truth of that vision, somewhere deep inside me. I felt the dizziness and disorientation of so many lives lived, mixing together, and that intense longing to be who I am, and to love who I love, from deep within my own, old soul.
As I wrote this song, I created a simple, extremely repetitive, cyclical chord pattern. There is very little journeying – there is just constant cycling, around, and around. I let myself tell a story from within my subconscious. I let words come without fact checking them, I just FELT them, inside my gut. And they felt true. As the song progressed, I let a few words rise up above the rest – “Holy ground … Spinning round …” and then, I returned to let the song cycle, again. It doesn’t feel like it ever ends.
Singing this song feels like ecstasy created from a spinning dance, a spinning globe, a spinning soul across so many lives. And it unearths a deep longing, like the longing I hear in the powerful Flamenco music, to find a connection of deep recognition – and a recognition of ancient love.
MB Bolin, The Mystic Bard
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