Charles Aznavour – Tout s’en va

Another Aznavour song simmering in melancholy, while the arrangement makes it bubble throughout, the beat relentless, giving the impression of time passing. How fast everything fades away, and yet with the hours flying by there’s always hope, the next day is just around the corner, maybe a new love.

The song isn’t about one particular love but several, the loves of the past, and the lamentation of how everything goes away, everything dies. And in classic Aznavour style there’s also clever punning. At the end of each refrain he sings the rhyme to a previous line, which then seems to remind him of yet another woman. Morose… Rose. Realise… Lise… etc.

And the verses describe simply but beautifully little precious moment and hiccups in relationships, arguments that could have been avoided, had the two people been wiser, more forgiving perhaps. Or maybe there wasn’t anything wrong. Things just ended despite all the moments adoring the snow or biting the fruit of love madly.

I especially like the voice acting at the end of the last verse, when he sings “happiness is fragile,” sounding, well, very fragile. Yet at the end is the message of hope. The spring returns. Such is life, he exclaims as the music swells for the final boom.

It makes me think of not only love but the passing of time, the fragility of existence. How much we treasure our little moments when one touch can be everything, one gaze, and yet we might never know what the other person is thinking. What seems like brief glimpse to someone’s soul, the infinite beauty, the shared vision, looking at each other, could be something altogether different for the other person, for example mere curiosity. We may wish that the connection is real, but perhaps dare not ask lest the belief in it proves to be unfounded. Refraining from communication may be the last attempt to hold on to our own dreams of love, and yet it is a silence that destroys the connection we attempt to maintain.

It is sometimes so meaningful it hurts, these little moments, just two seconds of looking at each other when everything else disappears, and then nothingness. Surrounded by the blackness of the universe, other worlds, other obligations. What is true in those brief seconds is yet the meaning of existence, what we live for, this love beyond all the things we say or do. Fragile, and yet, precisely like that, perfect. The hope of having such moments last, connections becoming true, two people wishing the same thing, this happiness in each other lasting until everything else has fallen apart. We live and hope for yet another day, yet another chance. Maybe next time.