Leaves of December, words and music by Belinda Bach © 1997

So you say that the cafe around the corner
closed down last week,
Well that's okay because  I've got no where else to go.
And the glass shows me the people
walking past this place,
Breathing asphalt, and telling stories
about the world they think they know.

And I ask myself the question:
"Do we learn?  Do we learn?"
And I know that time is blowing me away.
But life is just a story;
Pages turn.  Pages turn,

And the paper falls to the ground
like leaves of December.

The telephone keeps on ringing but I'm not home today.
And the rumble of the city shakes this very ground.
'Cross the street from here
there's a five-story redbrick building,
But no one goes around there anymore.


I'm drinking coffee on my balcony,
and hanging on the fringe of life,
And there's a photograph of a man and his dog
in this morning's paper.
And the magazines tell perfume stories,
but they never get them right.
'Cause the bottles look so mystic and serene.


What's it all mean?

"Leaves of December," the title itself, is about Miami.  There is no winter in Miami really, but if it gets anywhere near cold enough for leaves to fall from the trees, it'll happen in December.

The song, however is about many things, about my high school (which I was attending when I wrote the song), about the constancy of change, and about wanting to belong, and feeling there's no real niche for you, or for anyone else for that matter.

The first verse is a tribute to change.  The cafe was a little place my mates and I used to go our first year, but it closed over the summer and became a shoe store.  It seemed like the end of an era, because we had so many fond memories.  "The glass showing me the people walking past this place..."  is a reference to my view at that time that I was a true poet, and all of the 
people in the world who walked by the window discussing things about the world couldn't hold onto that poetry the same way that I could.  Yeah, I was a snobby, sullen teenager - what can I say?

The second verse is about sitting alone at home waiting for that special person that you can never have call you up.  The line doesn't mean that I'm not home, it means that the phone isn't ringing at all because I thought no one cared (I was wrong of course, but it was still a pretty cool line).  The rumble of the city means simply that - the hustle and bustle of city life with its cars and restaurants, tall buildings and nightclubs.  And the five story building was actually a seven story building that sat
abandoned right across the street from my high school; and if you wanna go deeper than that, it was an metaphor for me because "no one goes around there anymore..." was usually how I felt about the way some of my peers treated me.

The last verse is all about the way our consumer driven world advertises perfection but never actually delivers it.  The "drinkin' coffee out on my balcony" line is basically saying that I felt isolated.  It was as if the whole planet were living in a perfect little commercial where everything is perfect, and I was just watching it on a television.

And the chorus is pretty self explanatory.  We go on day after day in the same routines, but do we ever really learn anything about life or the world around us.  If change is the only thing that's constant, why do we never seem to change?  And eventually, as is the natural order, time will blow us over, only to replace us with a new generation, who never seem to
learn from the previous generation's mistakes.  But that is how things have to happen "But life is just a story, pages turn..." - it's how things are meant to be.  A book of life and death that just goes on forever...  And since we are only a brief page in that book, we eventually fall to our mortality, just like "Leaves of December..."

So that's pretty much it for that song.  Hope that helped to explain a few things.  Check back soon for the songography of another one of my opera (that's plural for Opus - hehehe).  Later guys!