Two Women

In the early 70’s, London had a coffee house downtown called Smale’s Pace.  Last night was the fifth Smale’s Pace Reunion, with nine folk musicians appearing in front of us at Aeolian Hall.  Such talent and passion for songs that tell a story.

Seven of the performers were men.  I was transfixed by the other two, especially when they were listening to other folks sing and play.  Laura Smith swayed to the music and joined in the choruses.  Then it was her turn:

I built a boat
I built her for one
I didn’t find any flaws
Until long after I was done
Everything was fine
Until I lost sight of shore
Then I knew
I didn’t want to be
In a boat for one anymore
You should see me working
I’m tearing her apart
Working night and day
Rebuilding with my heart
It’s there in all the pieces
I see it in every curve
The flawed design
I built a boat with fear
And shattered nerve
I’m building a boat
I’m building her for two
The hardest part was starting
I don’t know when I’ll be through
You should see me working
I’m tearing her apart
Working night and day
Rebuilding with my heart
I’m taking all the time I want to
All the time I need
I’m building her for comfort
I’m not interested in speed
I’m building a boat
I’m building her for two
She’s going to catch the wind
The way that lovers do

I’m so glad we built a boat for two, Jodiette.

My gate’s wide open and the world is coming in

 ***
My gate’s wide open and my dreams are getting out

What a lovely life to lead

***

And then there was Sue Lothrop.  She smiled and smiled as others played.  Actually, at first I couldn’t guarantee she was smiling.  A neighbour’s music stand covered the bottom half of her face.  But you can tell from the top half, can’t you?  All the muscles were up and the eyes were shining.

As one fellow played virtuoso ukulele, Sue’s whole being widened in astonishment.  Her hands were curled together on her lap, the left over the right.  Then she opened her left hand, fingertips stretching upwards, only to move in applause at the end of the piece.

I was there.  Oh, what a lucky boy am I.

Leave a Reply

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

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com 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 )

Google+ photo

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

Connecting to %s