The Song: “For Just a Moment”–the Love Theme from St. Elmo’s Fire.
This isn’t a love memory for me as much as it is a memory of driving. During high school, I took piano lessons thirty minutes away, in another town. There were no towns in between my town and that town. There was a feedlot and some scattered roadside farm houses. Every week, I would drive myself to piano and, since it was the early 90’s, I listened (on tape) to SO MANY love songs. I preferred sound tracks , in those days, and this love song, I would argue, is typical of the kind I favored: a song about lost love, nostalgia for a time gone by, or simply the pain of growing older, time passing as we speed towards death. (Others of its ilk included “Separate Lives” from White Nights and a song from a movie called Stealing Home, which I watched obsessively on HBO, every time it came on.)
I was 17. What did I know of love at all, much less love lost? I was always moving towards pre-emptive nostalgia, missing the thing before it had happened. Did all those songs prepare me for the worst or prepare me to let go too soon?