The Unauthorized Biography of Rosco P. Coltrane

When it's my moment in the sun, I won't forget that I am blessed, but every hero walks alone, thinking of more things to confess

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Location: Owensboro, Kentucky, United States

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Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Boy, You Got a Prayer In Memphis...

Yesterday was long day. I drove to Memphis and back.

I was looking forward to it, even though I knew the drive would be rough. Maybe I could stop at Graceland for lunch.

I recently read that my favorite writer, Wendell Berry, had an uncle that owned a small shack in the woods. Berry "often went up there as a kid to get away from everything, when he was feeling melancholic and rebellious"

Well, I feel much the same way about Memphis. I have been to Graceland almost a dozen times. I used to go up there whenever I was feeling homesick or down. Somehow, walking through the jungle room always made me feel better. I used to walk around to the side of the house where Elvis is buried. I would just stand there and think. Somehow, knowing the Elvis, one of the world's biggest stars, lived the last days of his life feeling lonely and betrayed, it made me feel as though I had something in common with him. It made me feel as though I wasn't the only person who didn't understand things. I wasn't the only person that didn't have it all together. By the time I passed back through the gates of Graceland, I always felt better.

Also, Memphis is a good and somewhat dangerous place for you if you are feeling rebellious. Which I did my fair share of rebelling there as well, what I was rebelling against, I know longer remember. But I am sure it was a good reason way back then.

But yesterday, Memphis didn't lift my spirits like it used to.

I just walked around and felt bad. I thought about a lot of things. I thought about Elvis. I thought about work. I thought about the poverty in Memphis. I thought about the violence. I thought about all the ghosts that seem to walk around Memphis bogging everyone down, including me, palpable as the humidity in the air.
I walked around outside the gates of Graceland. The line way pretty long so I decided not to go up for another tour. I had an interesting conversation with a German couple, who I couldn't understand and I am pretty sure they couldn't understand me.

At lunch I noticed a piece in the newspaper that said Marc Cohn, the songwriter of "Walking in Memphis," had been shot in the head. So I said a little prayer for him while walking in Memphis. Hopefully he will be okay.

I got back in the car and drove back. The ghosts of Memphis stayed with me most of the trip back. When I finally lost them somewhere past Little Rock, the tiredness of the day found me.

(P.S.) When I got home, there were a bunch of people at my house, I apologize to everyone there because I know I was grumpy and not much fun to be around.

1 Comments:

Blogger terra dawn said...

I thought long and hard about this and what I like to do when I am down is just to drive. It doesn't always work, but at least 90% of the time it makes me feel happier than I was before. Especially driving down open country roads.

11:32 PM  

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