All the lonely people 4

Sydney August 2014 – 2015 (4 photos)

All the lonely people
Where do they all come from?
All the lonely people
Where do they all belong?

Ah, look at all the lonely people.
Ah, look at all the lonely people.

All the lonely people 2

Eleanor Rigby, died in the church
And was buried along with her name.
Nobody came.

All the lonely people 6

Father McKenzie, wiping the dirt
From his hands as he walks from the grave.
No one was saved.

All the lonely people
Where do they all come from?
All the lonely people
Where do they all belong?

All the lonely people 3

“Eleanor Rigby” is a song by The Beatles, released on the 1966 album Revolver. It was written by Paul McCartney, and credited to Lennonโ€“McCartney. The song featured a double string quartet arrangement by George Martin and lyrics about loneliness. “Eleanor Rigby” broke sharply with popular music conventions, both musically and lyrically.

McCartney said he came up with the name “Eleanor” from actress Eleanor Bron, who had starred with the Beatles in the film Help!. “Rigby” came from the name of a store in Bristol, “Rigby & Evens Ltd, Wine & Spirit Shippers”. He recalled in 1984, “I just liked the name. I was looking for a name that sounded natural. ‘Eleanor Rigby’ sounded natural.” However, it has been pointed out that the graveyard of St Peter’s Church in Liverpool, where John Lennon and Paul McCartney first met at the Woolton Village garden fete on 6 July 1957, contains the gravestone of an individual called Eleanor Rigby. Paul McCartney has conceded he may have been subconsciously influenced by the name on the gravestone. The real Eleanor Rigby lived a lonely life similar to that of the woman in the song.

I was struck by the sense of loneliness on the faces in the 3 candid photos after I took them. Whether these people were really lonely or not is known only to them. The church covered in graffiti is abandoned. Over at the WordPress Weekly Photo challenge, the topic this week is Monochromatic. I thought I’d just keep doing what I do, in black and white, the purest form of monochrome.

Leica Etcetera, Photography Etcetera, Sony Etcetera

All the lonely people


71 thoughts on “All the lonely people

  1. The old question, does alone = lonely? As you said, we don’t know about these people, but they do look sad or maybe simply pensive?. Sad too the abandoned church. Do you Aussies have the habit of renovating such buildings as homes? Very popular here. Churches, chapels, school rooms and of course barns all made into superb character homes.

    • Once whilst on secondment, I was accommodated in a converted church. There are a few converted small churches but I haven’t seen it done too often. I like being alone at times, but lonely is another matter, as you indicate.

  2. I remember hearing and seeing this song for the very fist time in my home town movie theater. I was immediately struck by the sad lament of the song’s refrain as the Yellow Submarine meandered through the mesmerizing animation of Liverpool. It is a fond and yet very sad memory. One of my favorite songs…

  3. By the way, your images evoke the very same sadness I felt all those years ago. The last image of the two gents is particularly striking….an epic novel can be written about the back story of that moment…

  4. I was struck by the resemblance of the two gentlemen on the park bench. Not only did they have the same lost look on their faces, but one seemed like the older version of the other. It’s a very poignant photograph. One that deserves mention.

  5. An unusually melancholy post for you, but I enjoy the contrast. Probably they were lonely, even if it was only a fleeting moment that you managed to catch. Aren’t we all lonely, sometimes?

  6. Their eyes tell that they are lonely. You captured very well, especially the third one! Sadly to say that there are many of these lonely people are not out on the street… Your street shots always, and always tell great stories. Thank you, Dragon!

  7. There are a lot of people that I know of that wouldn’t like to sit by themselves in a cafe or restaurant. I don’t mind though; bring a good book and I will be just fine. It’s nice to see though that other people don’t mind being by themselves in public either.
    Or they could just be waiting for their table partners…

    • Sad, tired, lonely, waiting – the expressions can be interpreted in many ways. I have no problem eating alone in restaurants as well. However, wine by the glass is expensive, but I can’t drink an entire bottle on my own. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. I sometimes wonder if I’ll be that lady one day – alone with her empty plate in a busy restaurant. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ No-one knows who is going first in families, and very few people think they will be the only ones left. I’ve lost a few friends through death and moving away, that’s often how people become lonely, they don’t choose to make new friends. I don’t think loneliness will ever disappear. Strange though, when there are billions of people, how it’s still possible to be so lonely.

    Eleanor Rigby is another one I really love from the Beatles, always connected to that as a child, and wondered if it was about a real woman. Strange how there really was an Eleanor Rigby gravestone where they met. I’ve not heard that before. There’s got to be something to that I’m sure.

    • Loneliness will forever be around as you say. In all honesty, some problems just can’t be eradicated. I eat out alone at times, but I’m used to it. Generally they serve you faster, I find. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Regarding the gravestone, how do we know that Paul actually saw the headstone, to be subconsciously influenced by it. That’s the spooky detail I want answered. If he never saw it, then that’s definitely strange.

      • There is another idea on that Eleanor Rigby headstone. They might have known about it, written about her, turned into a hit song, then their manager said “Whatever you do, never admit you based the lyrics on that woman, the family might will want a share in royalties or worse, sue you for a all the profits.” Just a thought! ๐Ÿ˜€ But I think I prefer the spooky story, where it just turned out there was a woman of the same name! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  9. This week’s theme is walk in the park, for you…and you did it brilliantly, again.
    Lonely, sad, thoughtful…it doesn’t matter whatever emotion each one of us recognizes from these faces, what matters is that you saw and captured their emotions with sensibility.

  10. that last portrait is captivating… there is so much in that man’s expression and pose…
    I don’t mind alone, but I do have problems struggling with lonely…
    beautiful story-telling, Lignum!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Gosh, I felt quite lonely & forlorn looking at the people in the pictures. B&W is so evocative like that. On an up note, I’m planning a trip to Liverpool. I’ll have to do something very Beatles & touristy!

  12. Man, that first shot is something else… Sometimes it is nice to be alone with a cup of ‘jo and then sometimes sitting there can be a reminder of someone who is no longer there.

  13. Here is me speaking from the matrix of a year later, on comments of your photographs from a year ago, Mr. Wood Dragon. Are you really listening? Because if your wordpress website says that you are, then I hope that you really are. I listen and hear and I am not very happy with the messages that I hear and I am very sorry I hear them at this point, because simply making the connection seems to be causing some sort of strange disturbance…and I only followed your blog because I thought your photographs were visually pleasing. No big deal, except every comment since I made that decision seems to connect with something that is real in my life. I am reaching out, because I need to know if anyone else is having this experience, and if so…why no one talks about it. Please be kind and do not disregard my perception because I honestly have not had this experience before. Thanks.

    • Thanks for the return visit. My candid photography captures real people in real situations with real emotions, not adulterated by being asked to pose. People are free to react to the photos as they choose. I reply as appropriate. After all, we are all strangers on the internet, and people may or may not wish to open up to a stranger.

      Perhaps, it will give you better perspective to know that I made this post in September 2015, as my mother was dying. She passed away in October 2015. I wrote about what she and I were going through in my post The Cruelty of Dementia. Real life events affect our blogging in ways we cannot predict.

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