Songbook: The Greatest Divide

This one stems from my wandering thoughts about how best to live life. In reaction to the whole media hooplah over the “you didn’t build this on your own” quote I wrote this tune. Fundamentally we do not do anything on our own. Our ability to succeed is inherently tied to our communities, family and friends. Someone can have the best idea in the world, but if there’s no support it won’t be realized. We are social animals. It’s the way our species elevates itself above others. We don’t have teeth, claws, skin, venom, etc. that give us an evolutionary edge. Our edge is that we’re smart and social. We take care of each other. We help each other. We build upon each other. That’s our true strength. So when someone says “You didn’t build this on your own” I say…you’re absolutely right.

The Greatest Divide

Here’s the lyrics:

Some days when the hands strike 5, I like to pour a glass of wine
and just let my mind wander where it likes
I think about the pace we’re running the human race
or try to picture the fabric made by time and space

or I think of where I’ve been, how I’ve changed without and within
am I headed anywhere? How will I know when I get there?
On my own life is hard to do, probably why we’re not meant to
So I’ll sip my wine and just be thankful I got you

Standing on the edge of that greatest divide
between who we are and who we want to be
We’re gonna need some help to get to the other side
Good thing I got you, and you always got me

I remember being told “being the best means you’re on your own”
and of all the things I’ve heard, that might be the most absurd
you can only touch the sky when those who love you lift you high
at least I think that’s a better way to go through life


I gotta fight that urge to be headstrong and instead ask others along
Because if they’re not around no dream will last too long
and if we’re judged as a species on how well we’ve succeeded
the marker is how well the least of us is treated.

So when I’m feeling stressed I try to think of how I’m blessed
close to those I love the best, in the heartland of the midwest
Wherever I might go. there’s one thing of that I’m sure
when it comes to life we’re all in it together