Posted: Friday, August 17, 2012 9:56:44 AM
Some people are haunted by things such as memories, faults, and failures. Some are haunted by bad habits or obstacles. Going into my senior year of high school, I was haunted by fear. I was taking difficult courses and trying to figure out what was next. Although months away, the thought of graduation loomed over my head. I wished to go to college, I just didn’t know where– or if I would get in. At first, senior year seemed to mark the end of my old, familiar life, and I was not quite ready to let go of it. As if the soundtrack to my life, the song “If I Die Young” accompanied my fears. Sung by The Band Perry, a group I had never heard of before, I was taken aback. It was the combination of the eery lyrics and the innocent sound of the lead vocals that caught my attention.
The title itself, “If I Die Young,” is composed of bold words; it was a concept I had never really thought of. The song was mysterious and thought-provoking for me. The lines “Who would have thought forever could be severed by / The sharp knife of a short life” and “A penny for my thoughts, oh no, I'll sell 'em for a dollar / They're worth so much more after I'm a goner / And maybe then you'll hear the words I been singing / Funny, when you're dead how people start listening” gave me the chills. It kills me (no pun intended) to write out the lyrics, they are more evocative with the vocals behind them. After I heard the song for the first time, I could not listen to it for a while because it scared me so much. The concept of dying young was much worse than the thought of not knowing what was going to happen after my senior year. The narrator, a young girl, talks about how she had “never known the loving of a man,” how she had hardly experienced anything.
“If I Die Young” gave me much to think about going into my senior year. Though it unnerved me, the song inspired me to live out my life– to seize senior year and all its trials, and to embrace the new adventures that lay before me. I may not have known what grades I would get or what college I would get into, but I knew that I was not going to let any opportunity slip away from me. I knew that I wanted to grow up, to start a career, and to fall in love. I was not going to let the sharp knife of fear haunt and sever my dreams. Life is much too short for that. Now that I have graduated from high school and am attending the college of my choice, “If I Die Young” is no longer my life soundtrack. I intend on living a long and meaningful life. I suppose my theme song should now be “100 years.”