American Idyll

yes, the river knows

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Song Without Words


Jacqueline du Pre: Mendelssohn~~Song Without Words



And the earth itself still turning on its axis and revolving around that sun, the sun revolving around the luminous wheel of this galaxy, the countless unmeasured jeweled wheels of countless unmeasured galaxies, turning, turning, majestically, into infinity, into eternity, through all of which all life ran on -- all this, long after she herself was dead, men would still be reading in the night sky, and as the earth turned through those distant seasons, and they watched the constellations still rising, culminating, setting, to rise again -- Aries, Taurus, Gemini, the Crab, Leo, Virgo, the Scales and the Scorpion, Capricorn the Sea-goat and Aquarius the Water Bearer, Pisces, and once more, triumphantly, Aries! -- would they not, too, still be asking the hopeless eternal question: to what end? What force drives this sublime celestial machinery?
--Malcolm Lowry
Under the Volcano


Friday, June 08, 2018

Somewhat Outside Dirty French Girl Wash


Grateful Dead **: China Cat Sunflower ~ I Know You Rider...6/26/74



The slower a clock, the nearer it approximated to the infinitely gradual and majestic progression of cosmic time - in fact, by reversing a clock's direction and running it backwards one could devise a time-piece that in a sense was moving even more slowly than the universe, and consequently part of an even greater spatio-temporal system.
--J.G. Ballard
The Drowned World


**: Dark Star...2/24/74


TOWER OF SET / HORN CREEK RAPID
KATHLEENS NIPPLE WITH COLORADO RIVER
INNER GORGE OUTSIDE DIRTY FRENCH GIRL WASH
SOMEWHAT ABOVE HANCE RAPID



Thursday, June 07, 2018

All Equal Before The Wave


Bill Evans: How Deep is the Ocean




What we've been given is precious.
It's majestic in its smallest details
and its largest manifestations.
Anyone not humbled by the power
of the ocean should take a good, long look
at a fifty-foot wave. If you don't
have respect for a wave, it's only a matter
of time before the ocean teaches you
to get some. We're all equal before the wave.
--Laird Hamilton



Tuesday, May 29, 2018

His Name Meant Shooting Star


Dave Stamey: The Bandit Joaquin



I went down not long ago
to the Mad River, under the willows
I knelt and drank from that crumpled flow, call it
what madness you will, there's a sickness
worse than the risk of death and that's
forgetting what we should never forget.
Tecumseh lived here.
The wounds of the past
are ignored, but hang on
like the litter that snags among the yellow branches,
newspapers and plastic bags, after the rains.

Where are the Shawnee now?
Do you know? Or would you have to
write to Washington, and even then,
whatever they said,
would you believe it? Sometimes

I would like to paint my body red and go into
the glittering snow
to die.


His name meant Shooting Star.
From Mad River country north to the border
he gathered the tribes
and armed them one more time. He vowed
to keep Ohio and it took him
over twenty years to fail.

After the bloody and final fighting, at Thames,
it was over, except
his body could not be found,
and you can do whatever you want with that, say

his people came in the black leaves of the night
and hauled him to a secret grave, or that
he turned into a little boy again, and leaped
into a birch canoe and went
rowing home down the rivers. Anyway
this much I'm sure of: if we meet him, we'll know it,
he will still be
so angry.

--Mary Oliver


Monday, May 28, 2018

Look Well To Each Step


Albina Romanova: Carolan 's Dream





Still, the last sad memory
hovers round, and sometimes
drifts across like floating mist,
cutting off sunshine and
chilling the remembrance
of happier times.
There have been joys too great
to be described in words,
and there have been griefs
upon which I have not
dared to dwell;
and with these in mind I say:
Climb if you will,
but remember that
courage and strength
are nought without prudence,
and that a momentary
negligence may destroy
the happiness of a lifetime.
Do nothing in haste; look well to each step;
and from the beginning think what may be the end.
--Edward Whymper
Scrambles Amongst the Alps

Monday, May 21, 2018

They Have Laughed Inside Her Laughter


Joni Mitchell: Cactus Tree



9/3/70




The cactus of the high desert is a small grubby, obscure and humble vegetable associated with cattle dung and overgrazing, interesting only when you tangle with it the wrong way. Yet from this nest of thorns, this snare of hooks and fiery spines, is born once each year a splendid flower. It is unpluckable
and except to an insect almost unapproachable, yet soft, lovely, sweet, desirable, exemplifying
better than the rose among thorns the unity of opposites.
--Edward Abbey


4/22/74

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

O Juanita I Call Your Name


Allman Brothers w/ Jerry Garcia: Mountain Jam...12/31/73 (1)



12/31/73 (2)



Wanderer, your footsteps are the road, and nothing more.
Wanderer, there is no road, the road is made by walking.
By walking one makes the road, and upon glancing behind
one sees the path that never will be trod again.
Wanderer, there is no road -- Only wakes upon the sea.
--Antonio Machado
Campos de Castilla


Donovan: First There is a Mountain




UPPER TANNER CANYON
WOTANS THRONE
CAPE ROYAL WITH VISHNU TEMPLE
SOMEWHAT OUTSIDE LONETREE CANYON
BLOOMIN' YUCCA
COLORADO RIVER AT PALISADE CANYON


Thursday, May 03, 2018

There Ain't Nobody Knows


Emmylou Harris: Pancho and Lefty **



Steve Earle: **




We know what the law is,
Mister Po-leess-maan.
The law is the land.
You say, This is my land,
but you did not make the land.
You did not make your sheep,
you did not make the rabbits
on which we live,
you did not make the cows,
or the horses, but you say,
These things are mine.
This cannot be a truth.
I make my axe, my pots,
and these are mine.
What I wear is mine.
Some love was mine.
Now it has gone.
I think you are a good man,
Mister Po-leess-maan,
but we see the turning of the times.
Maybe a hundred or two hundred years ago
there was in the world what people called the wilderness,
or no man's land, or wasteland,
and we lived in such places, we are waste people.
There was the troll race, the dwarf race, the human race,
and I am sorry for the goblin race
that we cannot run so fast.
--Terry Pratchett


Gillian Welch / David Rawlings: 9/27/97**


Monday, April 30, 2018

Like A Poem I Meant To Write


Simon and Garfunkel: Leaves That Are Green



Ragged mountain rocks efface the path.
Twilight comes to the temple and bats hover.
Outside the hall I sit on steps and gaze at torrential new rain.
Banana leaves are wide, the cape jasmine is fat.
A monk tells me the ancient Buddhist frescos are good
and holds a torch to show me, but I can barely see.
I lie quiet in night so deep even insects are silent.
From behind a rise the clear moon enters my door.
In the dawn I am alone and lose myself,
wandering up and down in mountain mist.
Then colors dazzle me: mountain red, green stream,
and a pine so big, ten people linking hands can’t encircle it.
Bare feet on slick rock as I wade upstream.
Water sounds -- shhhh, shhhh. Wind inflates my shirt.
A life like this is the best.
Why put your teeth on the bit and let people rein you in?
O friends, how can we grow old without returning here?
--Han Yu
Mountain Rocks


MY HEART BROKE LOOSE ON THE WIND
CHARLES BUKOWSKI: "POEM FOR MY BIRTHDAY"
AND WE GET OLDER WITH THE SILENT YEARS
DREAMS IN PROGRESS

Friday, April 27, 2018

Charlatans A Dime A Dozen


CSNY: American Dream





Standing at the window,
reading the menu
of Obediah's services,
the Minotaur wishes
he could believe in what
she has to offer:
a promise woven into
deep lines of his palm,
some turn of fate
told by a card.
But faith is
a nebulous thing
and charlatans
a dime a dozen;
it's always been that way.
The Minotaur both envies
and pities the devout.
--Steven Sherrill
The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Life Of Man Is Most Uncertain


John Renbourn / Robin Williamson: Wheel of Fortune





Every fortune-teller I ever met was a faker.
First thing you should do to a soothsayer
is poke them in the eye and say,
Didn’t see that coming, did you?
--Mark Lawrence


Robin Williamson : Sheffield, England...9/16


OUTSIDE BOUCHER CANYON
THE COLONNADE FROM PHANTOM CANYON
OUTSIDE COTTONWOOD CANYON
ELVIS SIGHTING WITH SUMNER BUTTE AND FRIENDS

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Bring Out Your Dead


Grateful Dead: 6/28/74



9/2/80



just the jams...5/77




like a mountain path
that ends at a cliff
I travel along
the edge of your thoughts,
and my shadow falls
from your pale forehead,
my shadow shatters,
and I gather the pieces
and go with no body,
groping my way.

--Octavio Paz
Sunstone/Piedra De Sol

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