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Thursday, August 19, 2004

Late at night....waiting for the humidity to break. A cool breeze is trying to fight through the heat and take over. In the interim, I have the ceiling fans on.
Tomorrow is the coming-out of Project IAM at the Bremen Cafe. I'm rather excited about this. It will be nice to know that I have someone else rattling the sabre and charging up the hill with me. In the spirit of team play, I'm listening to Bakkus' record for what must be the seventh or eighth time since I acquired it. The music is well-played. This is solid rock and roll. I hope they accomplish what they want with it. It's a really tight record.
As for me, I contacted the spectres of musicians past today. I dropped an e-mail to Curtis, one of my oldest friends in the world and one hell of a musician. Between flooding in his basement and his youngest son contracting hand, foot and mouth disease (they live on the fringes of Amish country in South Central Pennsylvania), life is good for Curtis. I first met Curtis when I was 14 (almost twice that much time has passed since then; unbelievable!). I met him through a mutual friend. I was plastered on kamikazes and he was playing with the band who I had helped with the moving of equipment. I seem to remember that this was his first gig with that high school band. The rhythm guitarist lit this girl's patio on fire and initiated Curtis into the band. Just ridiculous. I bet the patio still has a slight stain from the reagent alcohol that fanned the flames. The girl was Shelley Straff. She fancied herself an actress/singer. She annoyed the hell out of a lot of people.
Ah, memories. What a filter! Oh well, onward to tonight's entry. I have no idea what inspired this song. For a time, I was writing a lot of ballads with natural elements (sea, sand, snow, rain, clouds, blah blah blah). This is one of those songs. I find that when I write ballads, I escape to the natural world instead of the many abstractions that are encountered by looking inward. I've always liked the elements, but unfortunately I have no tolerance for them most of the time, as I have chronic seasonal allergies. It turns out that Milwaukee is second only to Grand Rapids, Michigan for cities rated best for allergy sufferers in the United States. I have stumbled accidentally into the right place. Another reason to love it here. I don't know what all of this has to do with tonight's entry, but at the very least I've given the reader a window into the world of J.P.

Every Leafless Tree


If you knew how much I miss you, try’n to dream away the pain

In the lonely days of winter I can hardly stand the strain

In the wind-blown snows of evening, how the drifts become the sea

And I see us on a sandy shore in every leafless tree


To see you was a month of love in a second and a half

How my hands caressed your body in that private hotel bath

It’s these memories of you that come ever back to me

On every silent snowfall, in every leafless tree


And the winds blow hard and bitter ever vigilant and cold

My arms hang lifeless at my sides without a hand to hold

I tell myself under all this white, a little green must grow

A memory of love and loss under January snow


If the seasons change, they can replace the cold with warmth again

A ray of hope for golden days to say, “Remember when?”

A love entombed in ice is always difficult to see

And yet I’ll search in time for you in every leafless tree


This song is in a lower vocal register than what I am used to, but I think I pull it off rather well. The chord structure allows for that. For now. I have to kill just a slight bit more of time before I fall blissfully asleep next to Lovely Lady Leslie, with our cat Sadie continuing her hunger strike at the foot of the bed. Crazy place this world.....

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