Friday, June 22, 2007


when darkness falls outside
and inside at the end
of a pretty good day
I have turned on the music
I know – songs that have
lighted many nights
with the slide of fingers
along steel strings
fingers picking a pattern
of sorrow and sadness
as comforting as the wind

and as old as my childhood
afternoons spent sitting
in the grass trying to make
my fingers move like his
until I put down my
guitar and sang harmony
while he sang melody
and I knew he was telling
the truth, just as he
is doing again tonight
ain’t it good to know

I bought that record
in ninth grade almost
forty years ago – in days
when I was still learning
how to play guitar, to be
a friend, how to be me;
one harder than the others
four decades have drawn
new lines and old ones
I still can’t play like him
but I can sing the harmony



towanda said...


zorra said...

Beautiful. Thanks.

Cynthia said...

Beautiful poem. You are such a talented writer. I remember when I got this album as well. It's always been one of my favorites. I learned the song on the piano, but could sing harmony (or melody for that matter) at gunpoint.

Molly said...

I think I was in 7th grade when I bought that album...This song always reminds me of cleaning tack in a playing...You've got a friend. My son, Taylor, named after James will someday take up the guitar ( I hope) to carry on my families love for music and playing around the dinner table....