The Toothless Soothsayer

The Toothless Soothsayer

I must have been four, or maybe five
When grandfather said, with a snicker,
“Where a man wouldn’t go with a Colt .45
That boy will follow his pecker.”

Half a century now mocks:
I’d surely be elated
If Papa’s eye had turned to stocks
Or land speculated.

I’ve frequently suspected my granddad was speaking from his own experience.

One of the rewards the Universe gave me for getting to be this old was the raging hormones fading into oblivion.   There’s still plenty of passion in my life, but it’s of a different nature, and it listens to the voice of reason. 

I’d never have believed back when passion was a misery to be endured that the Universe had other passions in mind if a person could just make room for them between the preoccupations.

And yet, today I listen to any one of the songs below and it brings back vivid, pleasant memories of [usually] one woman.  The shadow of the past agonies is still there if I choose to examine it, but if I don’t the songs and the passage of time allows it all to be a bit nostalgic.  And the songs don’t last long enough to insist on thorough remembering.

Old Jules

(Arirang) Korean Folk Song [She never had an orchestra background that I recall]


Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris, We’ll Sweep Out the Ashes said things too well.  It was one of several I put as a single song on a 90 minute tape and wore out.  Live version, no embed:

 Hank Snow
90 Miles an Hours Down a Deadend Street  was another ‘said things too well’.

Terry Stafford – “Suspicion” (1964)


Leroy Van Dyke Just Walk on By



Johnny Duncan and Janie Fricke Thinking of a Rendezvous

Eartha Kitt – C’est Si Bon (Live Kaskad 1962)

 Leonard Cohen – Take This Waltz


Cohen’s tribute to Lorca

Merrilee Rush & the TurnaboutsAngel of the Morning


 We’ll Sing In The Sunshine– Gale Garnett- 1964


Third Rate Romance Low Rent Renzezvous – Amazing Rhythm Aces

Leonard Cohen – Closing Time



17 responses to “The Toothless Soothsayer

  1. Thanks – much of the music brought back pleasant memories !

  2. I used to love the Amazing Rhythm Aces and that song! Totally forgot about it til now. I love closing time and for some reason Angel of the Morning was another one I played over and over.

    You took me down memory lane Old Jules! Some good picks!

  3. A nice post about the rewards of the universe, some great music, too. I thought I was the only person left on the planet who remembers Gale Garnett. I think I sang that song pretty much every day of my life in ’64.

    • Teresa Evangeline: Yeah, that song and that singer were a special event in music history, thinks I. Glad we have YouTube for this while so’s to allow vivid remembrance of it. Gracias, Jules

  4. Yes, life between the preoccupations. Great rhyme 🙂

  5. love the music. music just fills my soul

  6. It seems to me that a person can hold an array of passions, even with age. At least, with the right person or people…and from what I’ve read, you have a whole lot to offer someone, if you were ever inclined to do so again. I think part of the beauty of sharing passion, as with any joy of life, is that it is made up of moments, strung together with all kinds of punctuation. A lot of people expect the joys of life to be continuous. They aren’t. They are like pearls on a necklace. We can wear them, and finger them from time to time, and smile at how smooth they feel when we close our eyes. That, to me, is what life is all about. I guess if passion is misery, and misery seeks company, that’s why we humans keep ending up together. Though, heartbreak often serves to free up a person to go find what they are really looking for. Just some thoughts on my way through.

    • Hi ejalvey: Thanks for stopping in. I’m sure you’re right, though human beings are such diverse creatures and their needs are so varied I’m not certain any particular package describing them can hold enough to call it meaningful. I’ve found my passion for solitude, searching for that lost gold mine, mountains, cats, even chickens as satisfying in my later years, as any passion I’m likely to feel toward another human being. The projects I’m working on all the time are passions for me. Sometimes it seems a bit ironic to me that now, the best me I’ve ever been, only gets to be best for the cats and chickens. But it’s not an irony I’m moved to try changing by broadening the scope of my horizons. Gracias, Jules

      • Well that all makes sense to me, really. There are not too many people whom I would care to really be around anymore. I guess the scarcity makes those I would like all the more precious. Maybe you are the best company for the best you that you’ve ever been. Cats and chickens have a lot of sense, really. Not sure guineas do, as mine seem to think they can beat a moving truck out of the road by running towards it, though most trucks stop, so maybe they are right!

        Still, I think you’re pretty cool, and very insightful.

        • ejalvey: Guineas are strange folks. I knew a guy once who had a large flock, maybe 30, when a fox started picking off his chickens. 24 of those guineas died in a single battle with the vixen when they caught it the fox died too. But they qualify as the absolute stupidest sentient beings on the planet, I believe. I sure loves ’em. Gracias, Jules

  7. They seem to have a collective consciousness, like a hive, or “the borg” from Star Trek. I’m down to 16 right now. I have them penned up right now until I get my fences up. They are cool folk, I agree. They come get me when it’s time to eat. Peer at me, and tell me all about it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s