Bristlecone

“There is a tree in California, a Great Basin bristlecone pine that was found, after an intensive ring count, to be five thousand and sixty-five years old.

Even to me, that pine seems old. In recent years, whenever I have despaired of my condition and needed to feel a bit more mortal and ordinary, I think of that tree in California. It has been alive since the Pharaohs. It has been alive since the found of Troy. Since the start of the Bronze Age. Since the start of yoga. Since mammoths.

And it has stayed there, calmly in its spot, growing slowly, producing leaves, losing leaves, producing more, as those mammoths became extinct,… the tree had always been the tree.”

Matt Haig, How to Stop Time

Mural outside of Sandwich Hag, The Cedars, Dallas, Texas

 

Every Day Lost On Which We Have Not Danced

“We should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once.”
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

 

Ervay Theater, Dallas, Texas

 

Euphonic Autonomy, Ervay Theater, Dallas, Texas

 

Despite the warning sign at the Ervay Theater during the performance by Euphonic Autonomy (and I didn’t hear anything that would warrant such warning) there were two young kids dancing in the dark at the back of the theater. They were having a blast. The low-light capability of modern digital cameras is amazing.

Euphonic Autonomy, Ervay Theater, Dallas, Texas

Euphonic Autonomy, Ervay Theater, Dallas, Texas

Euphonic Autonomy, Ervay Theater, Dallas, Texas

Got Those Deep Ellum Blues

If you go down to Deep Elem
Just to have a little fun,
You’d better have your fifteen dollars
When the policeman come.

Chorus:
Oh, sweet mama, daddy’s got the Deep Elem Blues;
Oh, sweet mama, daddy’s got the Deep Elem Blues.

If you go down to Deep Elem,
Keep your money in your shoes;
The women in Deep Elem
Got those Deep Elem blues.

If you go down to Deep Elem,
Take your money in your pants;
The women in Deep Elem
Never give the men a chance.

Now I once knew a preacher,
Preached the Bible through and through,
He went down into Deep Elem,
Now his preaching days are through.

Now I once had a sweet gal,
Lord, she meant the world to me;
She went down into Deep Elem;
She ain’t what she used to be.

Her papa’s a policeman
And her mama walks the street;
Her papa met her mama
When they both were on the beat.

—-Deep Elm Blues (Deep Ellum Blues), Traditional

Jerry Lee Lewis sings the “Deep Elm Blues“. This was an unissued take made in the Sun Studios (lyrics and audio from wikisource).

Deep Ellum Poster, by Brad Albright, Deep Ellum, Dallas, Texas

I saw this poster hanging on telephone poles in Deep Ellum honoring some of that spot’s musical history:

Bessie Smith, Leadbelly, Robert Johnson, and Blind Lemon Jefferson

The poster is by Brad Allbright (website, instagram)

I have a piece of original art by him, bought at the Kettle Art Gallery’s For the Love of Kettle event.

Painting #1 – by Brad Allbright

Euphoric Autonomy

“Passion has little to do with euphoria and everything to do with patience. It is not about feeling good. It is about endurance. Like patience, passion comes from the same Latin root: pati. It does not mean to flow with exuberance. It means to suffer.”
Mark Z. Danielewski, House of Leaves

Euphoric Autonomy, Ervay Theater, Dallas, Texas

 

I Ended Up With A Broken Fiddle

“And I never started to plow in my life
That some one did not stop in the road
And take me away to a dance or picnic.
I ended up with forty acres;
I ended up with a broken fiddle—
And a broken laugh, and a thousand memories,
And not a single regret.”
Edgar Lee Masters, Spoon River Anthology

Fiddler, Denton Texas