‘You’ve internalized, Bob Dylan - his spirit comes right through and we all feel it,’ says a Dylan fan gesturing toward rows of chairs recently filled with hushed listeners AKA noisy clappers in Fairview Park’s Meeting Room A.
Libraries, we are told, are no longer meant to be quiet zones.
I pictured you a lumbering older man with wide, surprisingly nimble fingers I’ve seen on guitar players from time to time. I thought you’d be a little arrogant, just the kind who suffers no fool gladly but suffers the children to come unto him. I considered this a plus.
What you say to your audience between songs is an art in itself. Walter and I don’t want to break the spell of Dylan’s lyrics with stray patter in our Muscle and Bone shows. So this story, though umbilically melded to Queen Jane Approximately for me, is better essay than segue.
Dylan’s songs let us in. They are his butler, impeccably dressed, astute, well versed in the bard’s wishes. Oddly, this butler lets anyone enter who rings the bell.
Worn wood bleachers, shade and sun.
Camp kids, kickball, home run.
One girl slides in the dust and jumps up
announcing through gap tooth grin,
It didn't hurt. I'm OK!
Annie Oakley squint, outlaw braids
are OK too.
They dance, with her, back into the game.
"Creativity is neither a rational deductive process nor the irrational wandering of the undisciplined mind but the emergence of beauty as mysterious as the blossoming of a field of daisies out of the dark Earth."
Thomas Berry, The Great Work
A little kid at my school assembly grinned up at me after the show. ‘You remind me of somebody I know!’ he chirped. ‘Who?’ asked I. ‘My Gramma!’
It wasn’t the first time my internal chronometer got a jolt of sudden aging. My dad’s friend told me one day I looked more and more like Frieda, my paternal grandmother he’d known as a child.
All this grandma talk can get a girl cranky in the bones.