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Another 21 years after the death of a 21-year-old near France

June 27, 2013

I was about 16.  Winter of 1965 in Dillon Montana, noted for its cold winters, I helped my friend Duck deliver newspapers, the Butte Standard.  I had an electric alarm clock that had belonged to my mother.  Snooze bar on top.  I’d set it for about 2 hours earlier than I wanted to get up so I could hit the snooze 4 or 5 times.  Downstairs in our rented house my brother Tom had been up all night reading and thinking.  The time I remember he was sitting before the fireplace playing our grandmother’s guitar.  Joan Baez was news then.  She sang ballads.  Tom knew who Bob Dylan was, but he didn’t own any records.  I just remember coming down the winding carpeted stairs.  There was Tom in the flickering light of the fireplace.  He had a red hot poker that he was burning dots into a log.  He stopped and played a song called “The Silkie,” a kind of monster on the land and sea.  Then I got on my jacket and went downtown to get my friend’s bundles of newspapers.  I delivered to Barrett’s hospital and the Western Montana College.  Also a bunch of houses around that area.

 

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