Perhaps the one song from U2’s Songs of Experience that has really stuck with me over the last few months has been one of the album’s slower songs, “The Little Things That Give You Away.” A few weeks ago I was in my classroom with the speakers up and it felt like I was hearing the song’s bridge for the very first time:
Sometimes I can’t believe my existence
See myself on a distance
I can’t get back inside
Sometimes the air is so anxious
All my tasks are so thankless
And all of my innocence has died
Sometimes I wake at four in the morning
Where all the doubt is swarming
And it covers me in fear
Sometimes, sometimes, sometimes…
Sometimes full of anger and grieving
So far away from believing
That any song will reappear
That first set of lines is a great picture of the abstracted self, oddly distant and seemingly irreconcilable with day-to-day existence.
Here’s a recent performance of the song by U2 for Spotify. A great rendition of one of the album’s best songs.