Saturday, February 27, 2010

I Fell Into a Burning Ring of Fire

Johnny Cash would have been 78, Friday. 
Fresh Air/NPR played an archive interview with the late-Cash that looked at his later recordings for Rick Rubin's American Records.  I know, you're saying to yourself, Bad Lawyer, this is a blawg not a blog; yep.  I love real country music.  And I loved Johnny Cash, June Carter, Roseanne Cash, Carlene Carter, the Carter family.  They sang/sing my life. 

I have fallen in a Burning Ring of Fire.  Oh, it's a fire ring of my own making, but it burns, burns, burns. 

These last two weeks have been the most stressful of my life and yet as my friend Pat reminded me, not on the scale of suffering like losing a spouse or a child.  I go to work at an office job that I'm grateful to work at which is far more than what I deserve; thanks to the beneficience of my "blood" brother in the law.  I walk into the building where I had my offices for 25 years and I run into friends.  And when I tell them my story they avert their eyes in embarassment for me.  I feel their pain, and fear.  It's like dying, professionally, but still walking around--I'm an apparition.  And even now, the worst is not over.  I deal daily with continuing legal peril from my tax nightmares.

Hanging on, is tough.  Johnny Cash hung on, and did some great late work that still amazes and moves me.  I may not be able to return to my former position in this professional world, in fact that outcome is a near certainty, and I may pay some further terrible legal price for failure--but, I hope to hang on.  Hang on to my dignity, return to some sanity and transcend.    Maybe there is some late work to do?


  1. I remember so well what you describe--the averted eyes, the "friends" who weren't, the people who'd seemed like acquaintances who revealed a kindness and purity of spirit I'd not expected. The feeling of loss. The world jumps out in sharp relief at these times, BL. There's a terrible beauty to it, as Yeats once said. I found nothing comforted me like being out in nature--get on your bike and ride until the world's a hum in your ear.
    Your dignity isn't going anywhere, and when it's over (it will be), you'll be different. Better, stronger, sadder. No transcendence without transformation.
    I'm glad you're still writing.

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