When I was a kid in Albuquerque I used to make up songs. Just like I still do in other places.
This is the song I can remember. All of the others are gone. My mom didn’t have time to follow me around with a tape deck and it was before video was invented.
The song was called, “Stopper.” I didn’t plan it out. I was five or so. But I pictured Stopper as a giant grasshopper. When I was five and I closed my eyelids I saw Ladybug wings inside them. I should be shocked to understand that my five year old brain chose a giant grasshopper as a symbol for Death. I’m not particularly.
The song sounds awful but it was quite happy. Five year-olds can write happy songs about Death still. The melody goes up, not down. That can make a song sound happy no matter what it’s about. The song was terribly simple. I was raised with a lot of folk music so I had a good sense of the chorus in lyricism.
The song was like this: Stopper, stopper, why did you stop my train? / Stopper, stopper, why did you stop the rain?
It repeated with various rhymes of things that are stoppable. We can jump in the middle like that because that’s really all I remember singing for sure besides the melody. Melodies are impossible to forget no matter how old you grow from the time you heard or wrote it.
Actually, this story is kind of personal. Maybe I should have saved it for my wedding night.