When the Perfect Song Arrives

Most of us writers make small to grand soundtracks for our novels and/or series. This post is not about any overall soundtrack that I have (that will come later!) but instead about the “perfect song” that best sums up one of my entire series.

In short, the theme song.

Now, I have a theme song picked out for every singular installment, but before a couple of months ago I didn’t have one for the whole series. That’s a very big role to fill and not just any song can capture the essence and emotion of an entire series of anything, book, show, or movie. I didn’t think  I would find the perfect one for a very long time. Until my queen favorite artist, Japanese pop empress Ayumi Hamasaki, released a a new mini-album this August.

The final track is called BRILLANTE, and I was in absolute love from first listen. It’s been a long time since Ayu has put out a song that instantly grabbed my heart from the first few notes and managed to hold onto it for the full six damn minutes. And then one night as I walked home from work this song came on my MP3 player, and I realized why it felt so strong to me – it encapsulates the entire motivation felt through the course of my series CROSS// particularly the final scenes in the final book.  The climatic scene of the entire series came to me while listening to this song. And it was perfect.

The best way I can describe the meaning of this song is to say “I must go on alone”. The narrator (well, Ayu) is pained by the idea of separation from the person who always stood by her, but truly believes that going on “the narrowing road” by herself is the only way things can end up. This is exactly what is going through a character’s mind at the end of my current series. The character does not want to abandon the person they love more than their own life itself, but for the good of the universe the character believes without a doubt that things can only be fixed by acting alone, even down to the detail of not telling their beloved why. In short, the road to saving the universe is narrowing, and one character believes that it can only be walked upon alone,  with pain.

I have done my own translation of these lyrics. Now, if you’re coming here from a google search looking for a translation of this song, here’s some notes:  I initially translate songs aiming to be as literal to the original meaning as possible (adjusting for symbolism, obviously). I then go back and reword some phrases so they sound more fluid in English and the meaning is easier to grasp. Finally, I adjust the syllables so they can be sung to the original composition if you so desire. And yeah, I test that last part.  The feelings behind these lyrics are explained above.

Thinking of you with this composition
I did the last thing there was to do  
The greatest gift I can give is
Not telling you the reason for it
Humans are stronger than I thought
I’ve been in darkness a little too long but
Steadily I go
I couldn’t see anything
And then I could see everything
The continuing road is too narrow
I have no choice but to walk on alone
When humans feel pain that
Exceeds the scope of imagination
They cry and they shout until
There is no more power left to do so
And nothing but emptiness strikes them
What was two became one again*
That’s all it was
They were simply going back to how they were before
I couldn’t see anything
And then I could see everything
The continuing road is too narrow
I can no longer walk on together with you**
*This does not imply the happy feeling of two people becoming “one” in love. It heavily implies a couple separating and each individual going back to their original life.
**Again, this isn’t about being empowered and saying “lol bai”. The narrator is extremely pained to be separating without giving a reason, as he/she believes they must continue on their path alone. It’s implied that if it weren’t for what the narrator has to do, he/she would stay with the person these lyrics are directed towards.
Finally, I give you the song itself in its music video format so you can hear it and see it in the context that Ayu presents. The video is slightly NSFW as there’s lots of mostly naked  men, although it’s not pornographic (darn). It’s also a little cliche but you know~ Wonder Woman is always relevant~

[PV] Ayumi Hamasaki – BRILLANTE (HD 720p) 投稿者 Henrietta-Aime-Fumer_Tv 
What song  best surmises your series/novel?