On January 26, 1977 , while opening for Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band, Patti Smith fell of a Tampa Florida stage during "Ain’t it Strange" and injured her spine. She had been spinning in a circle on the dark stage and fell backwards over a monitor, tumbling 15 feet to the concrete floor below. "Actually I felt like an asshole," she told Circus Magazine. " But my doctor told me not to worry, it happens to everybody. You know, he’s the same doctor who took care of Keith Richards when he fell off the stage."
After two weeks of bedrest, Smith actually got worst. One doctor told her she would never regain full use of her legs without spinal surgery. Smith opted for physical therapy. During her convalescence, Smith wrote a book called Babel, which contained poems, drawings and lyrics. Among them : "Ain't It Strange" which includes the prophetic lyrics "I spin, I spiral and I splatter".