Arlo sings to me right now,
Can you dry every tear...take every hand that death has consumed?
I know Barbary needs a hand
when her sister passes she'll have a river of tears
that not even my cupped hands will hold.
My dog stands behind me
She's crying and pacing
for her boys, my boys, who have gone
out to play in the field
outside the gate where she can not go.
The sky is light blue, dusk will soon fall.
I see our willow tree greening up along
its strands that hang like pearls,
like a rasta-man's dreads swaying in the wind.
The willow is dying, too.
Now Arlo has played the last notes of
"Gambler's Blues" and the people clap
their hands, whistle. I'm sure they smile
to one another, nod their heads, sigh.
But what of Barbary's sister?
Maybe she's sighing, too.
Maybe she's listening to Arlo right now
remarking in her head how she used to
listen to Guthrie when he first started strumming.
She sighs, knowing he'll keep strumming
even when she no longer can listen.