In his post-Beatles solo adventure, John Lennon wanted us to imagine, to cast our brains out across the ethereal philosophical planes, to conceptualize a world with no hate or fear or hunger. His aims were admirable. He just wanted us to have some perspective.
But ultimately, aside of the haunting C-major-to-F Steinway piano riff, it wasn’t very effective at getting anyone to imagine anything concrete.
At least not in terms of writing.
It’s odd, because Lennon wants us to “imagine,” or to caveman it down a bit, “think of pretty pictures.” The word imagine (and imagination) contains the word “image” suggesting that to imagine something is to conjure up a relevant image in your mind. What words does he use to tell us how to create the images he’s trying to evoke?
“Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
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