Saturday, September 15, 2012

Born this way.

Sometimes something makes me remember
how different my interests are.
Usually I forget.
But let me tell you a story about my life.
When I was little, and lying in my little bed,
sometimes my dad would lay down on the floor next to me.
I would hang my little arm over the side
and he would hold my little hand.
And he would sing me songs.
Not primary songs.
No Rock-a-bye Baby.
My dad sang me folk songs.
They were about war
and politics
and being so far from home you could never go back.
He sang me those great songs sung by
Peter, Paul & Mary
Pete Seeger
Bob Dylan
The Kingston Trio.
He sang me a song that went like this:
"Go ahead and hate your neighbor.
Go ahead and cheat a friend.
Do it in the name of heaven:
You can justify it in the end.
There won't be any trumpets blowin'
come the Judgment Day.
On the bloody mornin' after,
one tin soldier rides away."
Can you even imagine?
What a cool little girl I must have been,
with those thirty-year old songs all in my head
and weaving themselves into my dreams.
They've woven themselves into my life.
I love folk music that I'm now 50 years too young to like.
But how can't I?
It's telling the story of America,
the story of your life,
with just a banjo
and a couple of voices.
Stories that can be sung by bedsides
and walking down roads
leaving on jetplanes
thinking about your old man
or mankind in general
until the end of time.
It makes you think about all those
humble, beaten-down men and women who came before
and learned their lessons
and sang about it.
So here I am today.
And they don't do it like that no more.


  1. yeah girl. & we just thought those were the normal kinds of songs that all dads sang to their kids. we better practice up so we can pass it on.

  2. You wonder why I like Marshall, and I gotta say it's because in some ways he might be a lot like you