Song Fool | Creative Writing | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Published April 20, 2005 at 4:00 a.m.

In 1966, the Womenfolk required me

to pull off into a muddy ditch

beside a two-lane near Mainz, Germany,

to hear them finish Are You Going

Away With No Word of Farewell.

The Kingston Trio's The First

Time Ever I Saw Your Face caused me

to hum off key so passionately

into the scented ear of Kathy Gilbert

that we fell into something we thought

was telling us to get married before

we realized we hated each other.

Jerry Lee's Whole Lotta Shaking gave me

fantasies about my younger cousin,

Elvis's Heartbreak Hotel at Kay Barnett's

thirteenth birthday party made me want

to grab my crotch and twitch, and anytime

Ray Charles does I Don't Need No

Doctor, I can't be responsible

for what my body does out in public.

Nowadays it's Grace Potter's Somebody

Fix Me, Ani DiFranco's Little Plastic

Castles, Steve Earle's Copperhead Road,

or Bonnie Raitt's Guilty, and guilty is

exactly what I am. Apologies to all you

dear songs I've danced to alone in my living

room at twilight or sung along with in my car,

dashboard lighting me up like a tone-deaf

back-up singer. Can't stop myself. It's just

love that makes me treat you the way I do.