Litkicks Message Board Archive

November 14th...0600hrs.

Posted to Tribute to Ken Kesey




I was up, but I wasn't really awake. We worked 'til two, and the storm that was whacking the N. Oregon coast hadn't slacked at all. If anything, the wind had picked up, keeping me from getting the full four hours of sleep I was hoping to get. The house creaked and groaned through the dark hours.The windows rattling from a barrage of water bullets. Looking out the window,I watched the Pacific storm roll over the mouth of the Columbia, and throw itself upon Astoria. The houses just took it, as they always do. Squatting in their yards like wet wooden cattle, windows dark, and blank,as if ignoring the assault. But the trees around the houses on the hills didn't have a choice. Swaying, bending, waving their boughs in the wild wind dance of November. Singing the whooshing wind song. They must like to do that, I think, because they always do it if given the chance. Otherwise, they wouldn't have grown on a hill facing the sea. The big firs and spruces down in the gully don't dance much, and they don't have much to say,either. They just kind'a stand there, hunched up, shoulder to shoulder. Like old winos on a street corner in their dark green top coats, and brown bark trousers, trying to bum cigarettes and wine money off each other. They'll just stand there, and take the rain. they don't dance, and won't sing like the trees on top of the hill. Thats just the way they are, I guess,and they don't give a shit what I think, anyway.... "Christ, what a day for a funeral", I mutter, as I get in the shower,"Maybe I'll just go back to bed, fuck it". No, I'm gonna go. I get dressed, go down at make coaco.... Today is the day they're gonna bury The Chief. They're gonna talk the talk,read the words, sing the songs,and pray the prayers. They're gonna laugh, and cry. They're gonna remember, and they're gonna make new memories. Yeah, I want to be there, if I can. If theres' a thousand seats in that joint, I want my ass in one. After all, Kesey will be there for sure,its' his funeral. I want to sit in a room with him again. Even if he is dead, hes' still the dude.... The microwave hums along with the wind in the trees, I watch the leaves and twigs fly across the yard with the rain. The dog gives me that "lets not go out there,Jim" look, as I get my coat on..... I don't know about you, but I like the way my brain works early in the morning. Its runs quiet. The memory is there. The old stuff comes up easy, and clear. The people, the places, the words come in fresh,unmolested by a few distracting hours of conciousness. There is things a man likes to remember, and there are things he dosn't.In the morning, though, I got a choice memories.......... Since I heard that Kesey had folded up, hes in my mind. A lot. I remember him sitting in my '64 Jimmy, parked on Main in Pendleton. In hunting clothes, and hat, rolling a joint. We smoked and talked about salmon trolling. He wanted to know if I knew his buddy that had a boat in Newport. I can't remember the guy's name. I knew a lot of the Newport guys back then. But not the one he knew. We finish the joint, and head in to the bar at the Temple Hotel................jf