and your heart is heavy.

I went out in the pouring rain and was surpised by the heaviness of the drops; at midday the temperature dropped down to the mid-30s here in Sacto. Feeling downtrodden, the weather seems to surround me and I am not quite sure if I am comforted or made more melancholy by the grey driving rain.

Regardless, I went out around lunch time to grab a few essentials. At Tower Cigar, I spontaneously asked for a pack of Djarums. The scent of those cigs would remind me of Schlarb and I’d feel a bit warmer.  Usually, the pungent scent of the shop inspires me a bit—after nearly nine years of patronage, I find the smell of cigars comforting. Truly, if you’re looking for cigar advice, the owner’s son, Mark, has picked out a fair share of gifts for my loved ones and none have been disappointed.

Today, the warmth of the shop didn’t bring me much cheer, I walked back to the jeep feeling the cold thick raindrops soak me, hung my head a bit and shook off the urge to cry. Screw this so-called successful career. I’m not so sure the rewards (small) are worth the extremes to which I push myself. It’s the absence of the little things or worse, the memory of them, truly, that sparks this desire to repent, or which elicits the desire to ask forgiveness from those I love and have loved. If you want to know what’s really going on, head over to Ebb and Flow and look under this date….

I got in the Jeep and Neil Young’s Live Rust album cranked on— and I immediately had  a physical reaction to the music. My heart skipped, this unexplainable sadness in it began to soften, and my world seemed brighter than it had a moment before. I skipped ahead to “Cortez,” opened the box of djarums, and lite one. From the first guitar chords plucked, I watched the rain drops come into sharper focus, felt the cold of the day, and smiled my crooked smile. The taste of sweet clove on my lips and I listened…”I know she’s living there, she loves me to this day.” Yup. I do.

And so…

Neil Young and Crazy Horse, 1976.

Willie Nelson. You were always on my mind. yes, truly. And I am sorry.

Indigo Cover of Joni’s “river” (photo montage… not a bad presentation. yet, i associate this song with my long desert walks, looking down dry washes,  and singing “I’m going to make a lot of money and quit this crazy scene….”)

Joni Mitchell, Night Ride Home.
This song has the same reaction as a long, deep breath—let out slowly into a calming sigh. I recall balmy summer nights sparkling with lightening bugs…

Cat Power’s cover of Lived in bars

The groove once it gets movin’ along in the song, can you feel it? “Lived in bars and danced on tables—we’re so glad you’ve come back/we’ll bust down your door if you’re not there…” Yes, please do.

Georgia on my mind, Willie Nelson.
I am Georgia peach—my parents sang this to me so often, I probably could sing it before I was when knee-high to a grasshopper. One of my earliest music memories is sitting on the floor by the turntable, eyes closed, listening to it. I was 4 or 5? I like this video version—check out the beardless Willie and ah, that harmonica, yes, indeed…

Joni Mitchell, Cactus Tree “3,000 miles away he calls again/he can wish her there beside him, he can miss her just the same”

Neil Young, Heart of Gold. 1971. Such a lovely song… “it’s these expressions I never give that keep me searching…”

Willie and Dylan, Poncho and Lefty
“The day they laid old Poncho low, Lefty split for Ohio; where he ever got the dough to go, ain’t nobody know…The desert’s quiet and Cleveland’s cold… Poncho needs your prays, save a few for Lefty too, he only did what he had to do and now he’s growing old…all the Federales say they could have had them anyday, the only let him slip away—out of kindness, I suppose. ”

Neil Young. Like A hurricane.

Bob Dylan Abandoned Love
“My patron saint is fighting with a ghost, he’s always off somewhere when I need him most…” Ah, folks, ain’t that the truth?

And I leave you with this very un-blood on the tracks quite electric Shelter from the storm… right on.

“Try imagining a place that is always safe and warm/suddenly, I turned around and she was standing there with silver braclets on her wrists and flowers in her hair/come in she said, i’ll give you shelter from the storm…”

It sounds super cheesy, but I live in music, swim through lyrics-awake, asleep, doesn’t matter. Guitar chords and melodies twirl me about and charter my way. This is only a sampling of what’s passing through my thoughts this very dreary afternoon. Happily, over the course of putting this post together I am a bit more warmed—from the inside out.

I think this post pretty much only makes sense if you listen to the songs and let your mind wander… or listen to the songs and pretend we’re chatting and you’re letting my mind wander. hahaha. Food for thought. Crunch crunch.
Here’s to the rainy day blues.

Love, jig

Postscript:

And as with all my mercurial ways, it continues to rain outside but I’m feeling a bit more sunny. As such I offer up two of my most beloved favorites… can you guess?

and of course…

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