This morning I was ripping a Nitty Gritty live album that featured acoustic Country and Blue Grass music from my past. Jerry Jeff Walker, Allison Krauss, Jackson Browne, John Prine and others joined the Nitty Gritty Band and rocked the house somewhere in front of some very lucky fans. And thankfully NPR taped it.
If I had remembered John Prine was on the CD, I might not have listened; just ripped it and walked away. But it caught me listening and I could not not listen. And yea dammit, I teared up one more time.
Midway through the song though I realized around the second refrain or so it was not John's untimely death that made me turn on the tears now. It was images of strip mines, dead cities of the Rust Belt and Smog hovering over Los Angeles that created the deep sadness in my mind. The song just sparked my sadness. What are we doing to ourselves?
"And daddy won't you take me back to Muhlenberg County
Down by the Green River where Paradise lay
Well, I'm sorry my son, but you're too late in asking
Mister Peabody's coal train has hauled it away"
I am a card carrying member of the Boomer generation. My peers were instrumental in establishing the "Save the Planet" campaign sixty plus years ago that still chugs along today. While our efforts have been less than the success we had envisioned so many years ago, I cannot imagine where the collective we would be now without those early efforts. For my own sanity, I have to believe we helped even if it may not have been enough in the long run.
Are we doing enough now? Or is it too little too late.
Time and the planet will be sure to let us know. Bet on it.
Keep it 'tween the ditches ...................................