Steve Madewell

Pedestrian Ramblings

July 4th

It is beautiful Ohio summer morning and I have been up for a while.

Got up a bit early to enjoy some quite time and take inventory around the homestead.

I played at Zocalo’s Saturday and the Lake House yesterday which are two completely different gigs so maybe I am up because I trying to reconcile who I am after playing in such different places.

Last night was a spectacular evening. The sunset was not dramatic, but the platinum color of the lake more than made up for it. Even the drive was great. It was the first night after the new moon, and there was this tiny crescent in the north west sky.

This morning, I took the time to go sit by the creek on a big granite boulder that was pushed down from Canada by the glaciers. I was looking across the stream at another geologic feature, an anti-cline. That is basically a wave in the bedrock form some distant time in the past when an earthquake or some major disruption caused an upheaval in the earth’s crust.

It is a really cool feature. The cliff is about 60 feet high, and the exposed rock is layered shale. Generally this stuff is stacked up flat layer upon layer but because of the anti-cline there is this very distinctive hump in the layers. Sort of like taking a stack of printer paper and bending it. Only a little more impressive.

The cliff swallows have taken advantage of the situation and built a nest in the seam that formed in the shale. I don’t have a suitable camera to catch them as they fly in and out of their nest, but after my morning musings, I took some pictures anyway.

So whenever I sit on one of these big rocks, I always think about the glacier ride coming down and the force of the water moving it back down the stream-bed. Of course this made me think of Jeff’s song Like A Stone, which make the analogy of human resilience to rock.

Human resilience is an amazing thing but it is all so tenuous.

I know several young men who have been deployed in our recent military missions in the mid-east, who are trying so hard to create or hang on to some sort of life and recover from their experiences.

I don’t profess to understand why there can be such evil in our world and why we can’t find a better way of addressing it. But to sense the incredible disruption these young men are living with, and to think about the folks actually living in war torn areas of the world is so deeply disturbing.

So as I sat on my rock surrounded by the beauty of the world around me I couldn’t help but think two things:

Be thankful and grateful for the existence that I have had and to recognize the sacrifices that have been made for me to enjoy the serenity of this morning.

And what can do to help make this world a better place for others to enjoy.  I hope that music can be a part of this.