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Through a shared interest in poetry, we met a woman in Missouri who lives on a secluded small farm. In one of our friendly exchanges, she sent us a poem she wrote called “Across the Room.” The poem opens with a steamy romance that blooms at a party, with the couple leaving together at the end of the evening.

We discover later in the poem, that the couple had actually arrived together and were already in a long-term relationship. It struck a chord with us in terms of the fire and engagement still present in relationship, even after many years.

We sent a message back to Cecelia Gay, requesting the use of her story as the basis for a song. She was happy with the collaboration, and within days, we had finished writing the song. We sent her the link and also a physical copy of the CD and story. The process itself felt like sparks had ignited!

Check out our related story at Uncommon Promise


Across the room our eyes meet
Distance closes
As we slowly, step by step
Make our way together

Drawn by piercing dark eyes
Time suspended
As the crowd begins to dim
Fades then finally melts away

In the middle of the room
With our fingers touching
Sparks of something new
Yet we’ve both known all along

I feel pulled into a place I want to stay
Offered secretly
So compelling I can’t break away
Can’t imagine that I’d want to
It seems there’s no beginning
And there is no end
No beginning
Somehow without end

It seems there’s no beginning
And there is no end
No beginning
Somehow without end

Saying not a single word
I know his story
Why we both are here tonight
And we won’t go home alone

As we climb into the car
My heartbeat races
He softly says to me
“Dear, I think you have the keys.”


from By Invitation, track released August 1, 2009
Cheryl Martlage - Lyrics and vocals
Emerson Martlage - Music, guitar and vocals
Mr Toad's San Francisco - Mastering
Inspiration - The poem "Across the Room," by Cecilia Gay


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Cheryl and Emerson Martlage San Diego, California

At the age of 48, and after 25 years of marriage, we headed to a secluded town for 6 weeks, to create a new relationship and begin again.

When we arrived as if by magic, we co-wrote our first song ever— "Never Sleep," evoking the mystery and magic of the new adventure. Twenty years later, we're still making music. Join us on our musical storytelling as the adventure continues to unfold
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