Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Love. About 95% of all songs ever written are based on love. The percentage might even be higher than that. Love, or some response to it…or the loss of it…or the absence of it…or the betrayal of it. Sadly, the word “love” itself is a bugger to rhyme. It works with dove, or glove, or above…but really, how conversational is it to end a sentence with any of those words? So we songwriters are left to find other words for love.

When you’re a writer you listen to songs sort of the same way an architect looks at buildings or a chef eats a meal. Not that I’m always analyzing songs. But if I really like a tune I find myself pondering the structure and the patterns and the word usage, as well as how the music fits in all of it. So through the years I have studied popular love songs, especially in the country/folk genre, and here’s what I discovered:

Most love songs either spill out emotions or rattle off reasons why someone loves someone else. They feel warm and fuzzy and they work. But I started wondering if the love I wanted, and the love I had, fit all that. I mean, this wasn’t always going to work for us:

I can feel the magic floating in the air
Being with you gets me that way
I watch the sunlight dance across your face and I've
Never been this swept away

OR –

I'm sold on the lady in the second row
She's an eight, she's a nine, she's a ten I know
She's got ruby red lips, blonde hair, blue eyes,
and I'm about to bid my heart good-bye.

Things change. We change. I concluded that if you were to love someone for physical reasons, or even other reasons, then when the looks change…

...when the wallet gets a little thinner…

...when the hair goes gray or falls out,...

...or when Alzheimer’s takes away that intellectual brilliance… run the risk of losing that love.

So I wrote this song:

              NO REASON
Some speak of love and all that it costs
How it’s tenderly won and painfully lost
Hundreds of reasons for loving, for leaving
Are written in songs every day
But I don’t see love in that way

PRECHORUS: Cuz once you need reasons for loving
Then you could find reasons to go
So when you ask why I love you
Here’s what I want you to know

CHORUS: I’m yours in the sweet, in the bitter
I’m yours if you soar, if you fall
Love keeps no account of the winners
Ask why I love you, I’ll tell you
There’s NO REASON at all

After all of these years I’m still crazy in love
And if you want reasons there’s more than enough
But time’s going to change them, and life rearrange them
But one thing will always be true
That’s the way my soul rises to you


My family is surrounded by people who are full of kindness and love.  They evidence love in all sorts of ways.  And we also try to show them that we love them.  Sometimes people will say, "Hey, I owe ya"  after I've done something love-based for them.  Those who know me well have heard me respond, "Love keeps no account."  By that I mean Love...true and unfettered love...does not keep an accounting of balances.  We do what we do  not because it makes us look good, or because we might get something back, or for some benefit in the future. Pure love, true heaven-sent love, has no reasons.


  1. I've absolutely loved reading the story behind each of your songs. Thanks so much for sacrificing the time to write these stories down. I look forward to hearing the rest of them!

  2. Ditto i especially love this song

  3. This has always been one of my favorites.....and now you have just added to my understanding and love for it.

  4. Yes. I understand this completely. When I think of my children, I realize that this is absolutely the way it is. I love the line, "My soul rises to you." I have two friends, Rachel and Geneva, and we are constantly doing little things for each other. Sometimes very big things, like the way Rachel is always there to catch me when I fall. Or the way Geneva drove all the way up from Spanish Fork in her truck and horse trailer to pick me up when my colt had bashed his forehead in - the week before M was to leave on his mission. Even though I had my own trailer and truck, she could hear it in my voice, that I'd come to the end of what I could handle. And she came all that way, and drove him back down to the vet who was nearly where she came from. Just because.

    She says, "I hate to be beholden." And yet, we are so laced together, the three of us, with beholdenness that there is no possible accounting of it.

    You make me think.