Written by Travis Saunders
The ten year old boy was getting bored with his new action figure so he decided to turn on the radio. It was a large, aluminum and plastic radio with only one speaker. He turned the large dial until he found the clearest sounding AM station. The music began to play, and after a few songs, the boy looked up from his comic book. The most beautiful song he had ever heard was pouring out of the silver speaker. It covered the room with a mood he never experienced before.
The singer continued to sing slowly and sadly; “Mama – I just killed a man – Put the gun up to his head – Pulled my trigger now he’s dead…” The boy began to dance and prance around the room from corner to corner. He closed his eyes and his mouth displayed a slight smile of satisfaction.
Seconds later the entire song changed gears and the boy stopped, waiting for the song to direct his next moves. Quickly and with great urgency, the singer told the boy: “I see a little silhouetto of a mad man – Scaramouche, scaramouche will you do the fandango – Thunderbolt and lightning – very very frightening me…”
The boy whipped into a frenzy, flailing his arms and legs around his small body. He sliced the air with his fingers and toes, jumping up and down on his bed. He messed up the covers, and made faces in the mirror.
Then, just as before, but more intense, the song slowed to the familiar sadness that drew the boy to it in the first place. The boy once again stared at the speaker, his tired body shaking, and his jaw hanging open. He listened intently as the singer ended the tune with the saddest things the boy had ever heard. “Nothing really matters – Anyone can see – Nothing really matters – Nothing really matters to me…”
The boy began to sob. Tears rolled down his cheeks. He wiped his eyes with his fists. He felt a perfect balance of mixed feelings, something he had never felt before. He wanted to tell the man in the radio not to be so sad; that everything would be okay. He wanted to thank him for the most amazing piece of music he had ever heard.
…And now, many years later, every time he hears the song, he still feels the same way about it as he did when he was a boy.