A simple and powerful song about loneliness is called “The Road Song” and it’s a song I translated from a Russian poet and songwriter Bulat Okudzhava. It’s a song about a man who is on the road on his own through desolate forest areas. He doesn’t have much with him except the memory of his beloved whose love wasn’t reassuring. A touching lyric in this song is:
Maybe if there was warmth in your embrace, my road might have been easier to bare.
It’s not a complex idea, but an extremely relatable and touching one. Here is the full song:
Another haunting lyric in this song compares the protagonist’s lover’s cold eyes that follow him like two cold stars wherever he travels on his road.
And above this road of mine, shine just like your eyes, two cold evening stars looking down at me.
When I listened to this song in Russian for the first time, I immediately recognized the loneliness that the protagonist of this song must have felt. The song was immediately touching in a very human way because it’s so relatable to most people.
Song About Loneliness, While In Love And Dreaming About That Special Person While Apart
This is a different kind of loneliness, perhaps such a touching and melancholy one that it’s less common, but can feel just as real. It’s a loneliness in not having the one you dream about. Perhaps, it afflicts only those with an overactive imagination who have many crushes, but perhaps it’s common and we just don’t know how common it is because this is 100% internal to everyone.
The song’s opening two verses lay out the setting:
Every night she slept dreaming of me.
And in my dreams, she was all I could see.
We met on the stars as we closed our eyes.
Swirling around each other in midnight skies.
We painted sunsets lavender
While sharing dreams in love whispers.
Until sunrise broke the spell – time to part.
Waking apart missing half of our hearts.
Here we have two lovers who dream of each other and meet in their dreams. How sweet, sad, and dreamy is that, all at the same time? But that’s not it. The real tension of the song occurs when they finally do get their chance and just don’t make the best of it. The man leaves and all that’s left for them to do is dream of each other forever. How sad and romantic and nightmarish while sweet!
Song About Loneliness And Being Alone While Surrounded By People
Another song I translated from Russian poet Bulat Okudzhava is one of Russia’s top 20th centuries songs. It’s about something we’ve all done before – ride the public transportation. But in this song there is a unique perspective. Instead of just waiting to get off at our stop and disregarding everyone else there with you, this song imagines the bus or trolley as a boat where the passengers are sailors who understand each other in silence.
Here is the song with my English translation on YouTube:
Here are the full lyrics of this song because they are such a worthwhile read:
When I lose the strength to bare all this pain, when I feel despair coming on,
I hop on the last Last subway train deep into the night.
Oh my late night train, sail through the streets.
And carry me home after midnight.
And pick up all those who were shipwrecked at night.
Deep into the night.
Oh my late night train – open your doors and save us from drowning.
And your passengers – sailors at night will comfort each other.
With them more than once, I’ve left troubles behind.
With them I’ve rubbed shoulders together.
Imagine the kindness we share in silence.
We’re silent in kindness.
Oh my late night train, rock me to sleep.
And carry me like on a river.
And all of the pain, and all of the pain starts easing – starts easing.
The level of kindness through diversity in this song is a potentially life-changing one, which is why this particular song has touched the hearts of so many people who listen to it in its original language.
Song About Loneliness While Finding Something Like Art To Get You Through It
This original and slightly biographical song looks back at a time when things felt a little hopeless and lonely for me. But it is an optimistic and hopeful song because in that moment of loneliness, I found art, poetry, and music to inspire me and get me through it.
The song is called “Guardians of Souls” with the guardians of souls being poets who make something beautiful for our souls that help our souls thrive and flourish. Here is the full song:
The song starts with a setting of loneliness and hopelessness:
When all I had was a cigarette and gray foggy dew…
But from this initial hopelessness comes a ray of light in the form of beauty that poets create:
Words of a poet chose me to rescue. They showed me a beauty – a beauty I could feel. Since then it’s been the only – the only thing that’s real.
It really did happen like that for me. Then the lyrics of the song go on to share more about how it feels when a song or a poem really moves you and starts to take on a life of its own inside of you.
In the world he showed me, I mattered and belonged. Oh how I danced – I danced and sang along. He disappeared but left me. He left me with a clue. If butterflies start flying, allow them to lead you.
That leads to the chorus of the song which is catchy and fun to listen to while having some of the more interesting lyrics of the song:
I was flying through skies.
Drunk on music lullabies.
Poets fill the skies with magic butterflies.
Poets music flies.
Sometimes it cries.
But it fills my skies With magic butterflies.
“Poets fill the skies with magic butterflies” is such a cool image if you can imagine it. The magic butterflies are those magic butterflies you feel in your stomach, but in this line, it’s the poets who fill skies with them. As a writer, I am proud of having written that line.
But this is still a relative beginning of the song. The song goes on to talk about how little true beauty we have today, slightly hinting that art and music got replaced by corporate-made art and music, which is why many of us feel so abandoned and lonely – because beauty has been stolen and there is only one hero who can rescue beauty, and that is the poet and artist (as a group, I guess). This idea leads to one of the high points of the song:
Somewhere a poet – abandoned in rags and tatters, hears the call – realizing he still matters.
And though art was stolen from us all, he’ll fight the dragons – poets are guardians of souls.
Poets are guardians of souls.
It portrays art, music, and beauty as the antidote to loneliness and sadness. Whoever has beauty in their life is saved from loneliness – at least partially.