Good Morning Universe, How are ya!

Around 5pm this afternoon, I will have circled the sun 56 times. Maybe that’s why I’ve always been fond of suppertime ! And evening is my favorite time of the day. It all adds up in my mind for sure.

This is an interesting season for sure. Naturally whatever stage we are in we have never been in it before. As with most things we can only truly understand things from experience. This season has brought heaviness. It has brought mortality into very sharp focus. What once was a blurry concept now sits at the door waiting its turn in our lives. I have 2 dogs circling for home. A parent going through tough challenges. Friends parents passing, friends themselves. You hear the stories all the time. We take youth and the assumptions that tomorrow is going to be there for us with way too much liberty. The worst part is that it effects how we treat today. The present.

With all of that circling around my head, it makes me much more aware of the moment. Of the breath. Of the heart. Of thankfulness of which there is so much of.

Circles begin and close everyday. The tides pull and the moon is affected. We are all connected to everything. So, here on this cold day in Tennessee, I will pray thankfulness for the cold, the rain and the perfect imperfection of the universe. I am happy to be here, to learn, to forgive, to be forgiven, to build more bridges and tear down walls in my world.

So Creator, when you see the smoke of my Cedar and Sage rise this morning, know it is me. Know my humble heart beneath my ego. Know my love for this earth I stand on. And know that I do try to be, what I say I want to be.

I write this thinking of my Father. Of a friend that lost her Mother unexpectedly last year. I write it with Glen Frey on my heart. Of Merle Haggard and how much music is attached to our souls. We all must pass, and it is my only way of understanding is that there is something after. And while pearly gates and streets of gold don’t connect with me, I know the soul never dies, and there is a home on the other side of our reality here. But today I say” Good Morning Universe, How are Ya !” I’m glad to be here !

Be good to yourselves and to those around you.

Aho and Amen !

Shine A Light: Merle Haggard

Merle Haggard would rather let his music do his talking and he is probably the smarter for it. Not because he isn’t a smart dude, he just doesn’t want to hear himself ramble on, and he probably remembers the old adage about opinions and how everyone has one!

So letting his music do the talking and it has done it quite well for close to 50 years !!! California born, Haggard had a rough go as a child. Losing his father at the age of 9, Merle turned to petty crime, which led finally to a 3 year stint in San Quentin. There he saw Johnny Cash 3 times and decided to turn his life around.

Merle Haggard’s first #1 in 1966 with I’m A Lonesome Fugitive” and three years later had one of the biggest hits of his entire career with “Okie From Muscogee”. in Merle’s words he was just trying to speak for some of the Americans that rarely had a voice. It’s a bit deceptive on the real spirit of the man. But make no mistake Merle Haggard is a patriot, and a seeker of truth. He doesn’t mind stepping on any toes to reach that truth.

I’m fond of Merle’s late 70’s to early 80’s period, with songs like “Kern River”, “Big City”, “Going Where The Lonely Go”, and of course “Poncho and Lefty” with his pal Willie Nelson.

Merle has had roughly 38 #1 hits. has toured endlessly, and worn his trials, victories and failures on his sleeve. If Haggard’s music is not familiar to you, then you owe it to yourself to check it out. He’s been called the “Poet of the common man”. An excellent writer and a voice that just drips truth.