Sunday, July 18, 2010

Dylan on a Sunday

I started this day in Federal Way, WA. My friend, Jerry, drove me to the airport in his Toyota pick-up at 6 am. I took a commuter flight from Seattle to Portland on a prop plane manufactured in Canada. I got a shuttle from the airport to my hotel room for this evening where they let me check in early. I dumped my stuff in my room and walked to the nearest light rail stop (the Max), changed to the Gresham line at the Gateway transit center and rode it all the way to the end. That left me about a mile and a half from the East County Church of Christ, where I ministered for eleven years. I walked and arrived just in time for the opening song. After services, I walked about a mile to Edgefield, one of my favorite places in all the world, a kind of constant carnival of music, good food and beverage, golf, glass blowing, gardens, etc.

There should be a song in all of that, or two, or three.

I thought about that as I walked to Edgefield. I walked past a long stand of blackberry vines, which are omnipresent in Western Oregon and a nuisance. Except for this time of year, when they have ripe berries. And the best part of that is the smell. I used to run along trails in this area and the smell of the blackberries on the breeze made the run immensely more enjoyable.

Anyways, as I was walking past and smelling the blackberries, I thought this is the kind of thing that would show up in a Dylan song. While the song wouldn't be about it, (or if it were, only in an oblique way) a line about berries on the wind could very well make it into a song. The power of his observations are often what make his lyrics so great.

I am not always the most observant person in the world. Some things simply evade me. So when a particular smell opens up a fist-full of memories, I want to be a poet. I want the few things that I deeply observe to have a mark on the world, to linger, to have a shared existence. And I wish most of all that I could combine that with melody, and a great middle eight, and a chorus with a subtle, but memorable hook. Today will be content with a blog post, oh underachieving today.

1 comment:

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