Austin — Driving home, I hear Johnny Cash’s Fulsom Prison Blues in the car. That song is like a vein in bedrock, powerful, lodged, solid. The whoops of the prisoners in the background fray its edges and danger it up. With its power and resignation, it’s not a song that jostles easily in this late-afternoon, early-Spring breeze and it stays with me as I start my singing.
For the whole time, I cycle through those blues like a carnival ride, never quite wanting to get off. I feel the centrifugal force of the first repeated melodic turns, the quickening of the middle and the enveloping Johnny Cash dip at the end.
Each time around, the center line of the tune settles more into my body, enabling me to fly off it knowing it will be there when I come back.
Thank you Johnny, for showing us the bounty of life inside constraint.