Last Kiss - the cover by Pearl Jam
By Melanie Brooks
When I was a child in the late 1970s and early 1980s, my father used to sing to me at night to help me fall asleep. One of those songs was Last Kiss by J. Frank Wilson and
It’s a pretty sad song about a young man and woman who got in a car crash while out on a date. An odd choice, for sure, for a lullaby.
“I couldn’t stop, so I swerved to the right.
Never forget the sound that night.
The crying’ tires, the bustin’ glass.
The painful scream that I heard last.”
I’m not sure why my dad thought this was appropriate. Maybe he was tired and it was the first slow song that popped into his head. But I loved it. The melody wasn’t
“Where oh where can my baby be?
The Lord took her away from me.
She’s gone to heaven, so I got to be good,
So I can see my baby when I leave this world.”
When I was a child listening to my father’s voice lull me to sleep, I would imagine that the boy and girl were caught in a torrential downpour when the accident happened.
Eventually I grew up and dad stopped singing me to sleep.
It was the year 2000, the year I graduated college, when Pearl Jam covered that song and it became popular on the radio. I hadn’t thought about my father’s lullaby for
Today I have a 6 year old. And I sing to him a song he affectionately calls “Papa’s Song”. I’ve been singing it to him since he was a baby. He sings the refrain with me,