A rambling train of thoughts about the universe and our micro solar system consisting of our dear Sun and other planets in a magnetic dance while we hurtle through space on the face of a rock and stare at flat screens where we attempt to connect while we detach.
Levon on my mind a lot,
Our Shaman guide
Through this beautiful, tough, mean old world.
This link was easy to find.
Did you think life was
Or should be
When you look over there,
Does it look easier?
Reminder of a story been wanting to tell.
It was a day at work when I was ready to throw in the towel. I worked as a visiting nurse case manager. Travelling, assessing, meeting clients, coordinating services, trying to squeeze health care from the limited wellspring.
I met the woman I needed to visit.
My heart was not in it.
I had been in this mode before. Nursing is emotionally draining.
I tried to put on my best face and smile.
The woman and I connected. We had good discussion as I ran down the list of questions.
At some point I noticed the poster... Levon Helm... internally I felt like my adrenaline was beginning to raise, Like in ICU when someone's alarm went off. These moments were what I lived for in nursing, And what takes a serious toll.
I asked her, "So you like Levon?" Was hoping for some epic tale of The Man, The Man we saw at his barn/ home/studio And at the Burlington Vermont Jazz festival. Then the moment that told me, "You're in the right place, Mary."
I feel like if you see something
Or feel something, like you have been there before,
Or in common terms:
You see a sign,
That maybe you are where you are supposed to be,
No Matter how tired or spent you are,
The Sign tells you,
You are on the right path.
and pointed to a set of ragged drumsticks hanging on the wall.
"Levon gave those to me..."
Well the rest of the interview shifted to music,
And me wanting the experience,
May I touch them?
They were rough, nicked, and Levon drummed with them
At the Burlington Jazz Festival concert we saw.
I remembered her now,
She was down in front, on the main floor of the theater.
When the concert was over, We saw Levon walk over to her and
He handed her his sticks.
The sticks that kept me working a few more years.
She explained..."I was wearing this Imus hat" She lifted it off her head.
This woman and I had a lot in common..."Oh yeah I listen to him too."...
She said she arranged it with Levon that he would give her his sticks
And the Imus hat was how he knew where she was.
I sat in awe and am still amazed at that special visit,
That special woman,
Who let me touch those special sticks,
The sticks of our Shaman Guide.
We never know when a special moment comes along,
It can be anywhere, anytime, anyone,
Who may inspire you to go on,
Telling you you're on the right path.
There was no question that my old office mate Paula was leading me again and again to Greenwich Village. Not The Village of Today, really. The Village of the 1960's. The time when poets and musicians couch surfed, feeding at bars and cafes, the tab covered by a song or a promise.