September 12, 2003

Ring of Fire

Johnny Cash.jpg
I remember my folks' stereo back in the 60's. This was around the time of Kennedy, I remember the day of his assisination too, kids running in the hallways of elelmentary school, screaming . We were stationed in New Mexico, Clovis Air Force Base. Life in the desert: the sky azure, the endless sea of sand, tumbleweeds, Dairy Queens, horny toads, the Carlsbad Caverns.

The stereo was a big piece of varnished furniture, a blond cabinet with a lid, speakers behind a frontal coarse cloth . Under the lid was the turntable, knobs, dials, swingarm, and a pile of record albums.

And my dad's favorite album: "Ring of Fire". He would sing along in self mocking baritone, a wink and a smile curling from the corner of his mouth.

Love is a burnin' thing,
And it makes a fiery ring
Bound by wild desire --
I fell into a ring of fire.

I fell into a burnin' ring of fire --
I went down, down, down
And the flames went higher,
And it burns, burn, burns,
The ring of fir, the ring of fire.

Johnny Cash was my dad. The two merged for me. Or better: he was my dad's avatar. Loners. The red bead of a cigarette glowing in the morning's dark before dawn... as the coffee's percolating music bubbles me awake.

(Rest in peace.)

Posted by Dennis at September 12, 2003 8:55 AM

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