Pink Moon

Today marks the appearance of April 2013’s full moon, the so-called ‘pink moon’; Native Americans gave it this name not because it was pink, but because its appearance  heralded the arrival of moss pink (Phlox subulata), a flowering ground cover that blooms in spring.  (This year, residents of the Eastern Hemisphere, but not the Western, may also be able to glimpse a partial lunar eclipse).

With that in mind, I’m honoring British singer-songwriter Nick Drake, who released just three studio albums in his short career: Five Leaves Left (1969), Bryter Layter (1970), and Pink Moon (1972). He died of an overdose of amitriptyline, an antidepressant, in 1974; he was just 26 years old.

Nick Drake

The title track of Pink Moon is a longtime favorite of mine.  It’s just Nick and his guitar (and some overdubbed piano).  The lyric is a simple one; Drake may have been imparting a message….or not….it doesn’t matter.  For two minutes, it takes me to another place, which is what all beloved pieces of music do for any of us.  I love the huskiness of his voice when his sings ‘pink’ for the fourth time in those two lines of the refrain.

Saw it written and I saw it say
Pink moon is on its way
And none of you stand so tall
Pink Moon gonna get ye all
And it’s a pink moon

Yes, a pink moon
Pink, pink, pink, pink, pink moon
Pink, pink, pink, pink, pink moon

I saw it written and I saw it say
Pink moon is on its way
And none of you stand so tall
Pink moon gonna get ye all
And it’s a pink moon

Yes, a pink moon

So step outside tonight, take a look at the moon, and listen to Nick.


Trivia tidbit: If the song sounds familiar and you’re not sure why, you may be remembering this 1999 Volkswagen Cabrio commercial, which, 25 years after his death, introduced Drake to a whole new audience.

2 comments

  • Beautiful full moon tonight, although it didn’t look pink. Heard of a blue moon, but never a pink one. Learned something new

    Like

  • a timeless sound i had never heard before….thanks for sharing…i love your mixture of music/poetry/art/pop culture analyses and observations…..

    Like

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