Wednesday, August 18, 2010
I have been playing with music quite a bit lately. Going back to the guitar a little more because we lost our lead guitar player and it really sucks. The harp playing has come around quite nicely and it is time to change it up again. Being in a band is a little more complicated than one might think. You practice, you perform. Eventually you rely heavily upon the skills of the people in your band to carry you though. Our lead guitar player was fabulous. But nothing lasts forever and some of us moved on.
Writing music has always been something that I have wanted to do for a while so I rolled out two songs the past couple weeks. The first hit me while thinking about my hometown, Columbia MO, a town a lot smaller in my day than it is now. My 30th High School reunion was coming up so there were lots of memories floating around here and there. Some good and some bad.
I remember being very young and, for whatever reason, able to get in to some of the bars in town and drink as a teenager. The Stein Club was one of them. So a couple weeks ago I wrote the song, "Little Sister". A song about a guy whose underage little sister was a little less than obvious about getting what she wanted, which was getting in to the bars at night. Her mom took it out on him and he had to take care of business. So the Stein Club was the setting and the song pretty much rocks. If you want to hear the song you can hear Jimmyleg and the Browndogs play Little Sister at Lone Wolf on Wednesdays.
"I want to El Camino Baby" is a work in progress and coming along quite nicely. Again the setting in Columbia MO, down by the Missouri River in Easley. We used to party down there quite a bit and things got out of hand most times. Once we filled up a friends El Camino with 6 Kegs and set up shop for a couple days. Well, you can imagine the trouble that came about. We were a bunch of rednecks.
Several years ago I went back to school to get a communications degree. My favorite classes, of all things, were the poetry and creative writing sections. I couldn't get enough of the poetry and still bang one out here and there because of it. I joined a couple poetry writing forums, clubs etc. It was a great start to getting the creative juices flowing in just about every area of my life. I made a book and gave them away as gifts one year. It was a lot of fun. I was published twice, once for a Poem called "Wheelchair Whack" and another for "Lunch at Mimi's".
I am not sure how the publishers found the poems. I workshopped them a couple of times and posted them on a some poetry slam boards. I still don't think they are all that cool. Then one day I get an email saying a magazine in California was featuring "Lunch at Mimi's" in a ezine. Later made it in to print. Pretty funny stuff considering the subject matter. I don't think I was supposed to get paid. I signed something for permission to use.
My (writing) subjects usually have to do with small town folk living their lives day to day, the idiosyncrasies, their struggles, their family bond, their demons, their condition. I am not sure why I like to write about small town America, maybe because of my experiences in small towns during a period of my life after high school. I moved around from town to town for 5 years in Kansas, Missouri and Texas. Maybe I just like pure people and the crazy things some of them do. It's a mental picture that I have. All I have to do is describe what is happening, a vignette. I like community and the ensemble of characters throughout.
So here is Wheelchair Wack Folks. A small town, a nursing home, an angry resident with a taste for blood.
Ralph Pfremmer copyright 2003
I am gonna pitch this here grape
on that vinyl tile floor over there.
Watch the Emma dance, black on white.
Like seizure checkers on
water wax shine.
I can wait
longer, more patient
than any puree crusted
I know her cane.
Hear the rubber pucker steps?
shiny slick, from Melvin's mop
at breakfast meds.
Damn, she's slow as honey-waits-to pour!
Coughing up pickle brine
from canning class with Darlene,
and touching every inch of the rail.
It'll be her last dance, uh-huh.
Little ball tinted green, yellow sweet.
Bowl you just right.
Roulette grape: knife-her-in-the-back.
I am gonna take you down.
Here is Lunch at Mimi's. I never got why this was the one to hit print. This is about a couple finishing up breakfast at Mimi's Restaurant in Chesterfield Valley. Man they could eat.
Lunch at Mimi's
Ralph Pfremmer Copyright 2003
She sat satisfied from the french
toast, four bacon special.
Her wet-nails were faces, fingers
guiding golden stick-dick.
They painted bruise upon her lips,
for the server, the hostess,
and all the others
waiting for her seat.
Her head sat atop her body like
a frog chin bubble,
holding air to attract a mate.
Around the top, outside in
she worked the waxy tip.
A masterpiece unfolding in the presence
of her husband, the table snake,
unbuttoned, shirt bulging from a fat mouse.
Gosh, her neck balloons so much,
should a thorn or sharp stick puncture,
POP! The frog would die.
And the snake would slither home,
to the kitchen floor and wait
I encourage anyone to embark on a writing journey. You never know where it will take you or how it will enhance your life. Expression is a vital part of fulfillment. Even if it is for you and nobody else.