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Weekend Soundtrack

Weekend Soundtrack: "My Pillow is the Threshold" by The Silver Jews

Michael Raphael

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Shay Robertson with her husband
(Shay Robertson)

A weekend soundtrack can be the song you hear on your iPod or just in your mind all weekend long. Our latest story comes from Shay Robertson in Evanston, Ill. Her soundtrack is "My Pillow is the Threshold" by The Silver Jews.


John Moe: Shay Robertson, why is this your weekend soundtrack?

Shay Robertson: Because this appears to me to be a song about a person who isn't with the person they want to be with and finds a space at night when they're alone a special kingdom they go to so they can be with that person in their imagination. And since my husband is a consultant and travels a lot that is something I have a lot of familiarity with. And I frequently listen to this song on Sundays when he's not here.

Moe: What does his departure mean for you?

Robertson: You know it's a sad thing because I like it when he's here and I miss him when he's gone. And we have a wonderful warm marriage and so when he's out of town a lot of times the only time I have an opportunity to think about him is after the busy work of the day is gone, the kids are asleep and I'm getting ready for bed. That's when I feel his absence. Occasionally, this song will come into my head because the next time I visualize him is tomorrow night or tonight when I go to bed.

Moe: "First life takes time and time takes life"?

Robertson: Yes.

Moe: Do you feel his time and his use of the time is taking away from your life?

Robertson: No, not necessarily. I wish I could share that time with him. I wish that we could be together ever waking moment. We would probably kill each other, but I do wish we could be together for every waking moment. That would be ideal. That would probably lead to another song about feeling cloistered and crushed, but I'd sure like to try that song on for size.

There's a line where he says that he "throws thoughts like hatchets out of his day" and that's what it feels like for me at the end of the day when I'm done with everything, when I'm throwing out all the things that I'm not going to obsess about. Then is when I really miss him - when his absence is more tangible. That was the line that kicked me. And then the first few times I listened to it on the day he was leaving or the day he left. The last few lines are "now I'm here for good and I won't leave you anymore." And I still can't say those lines without getting teared up. I'm really looking forward to the end of the song when he's here for good.

  • Music Bridge:
    Artist: Slow Poke
    CD: At Home (Palmetto)
More stories from our Weekend Soundtrack series


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