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Bear Creek '98

_ a symphonic, folk rock, blues song 1. I'm an old man looking For the lost, best parts of me. I'm an old man looking For the lost, best parts of me. I'm looking in the places Where the people say love is free. I went to the fest. It was ninety eight. I was hoping that I wasn't Thirty years too late. Hippie bands played Through the burning weed; And my mind went back; And my soul was freed. Oh yeah. Oh yeah. The drums beat in my chest When my body met the rhythms Of the Bear Creek, Jerry, Fest. 2. I remember by seeing, By being around A dropout generation Of the lost and found. They were working through the catalogue Of different ways To stop a mind from running The material maze, There were trips to the East; There were trips to the West. There was inside, outside Chemical quest. There were uppers and downers And places in between When the California Coast Caught the most of the scene. Drop out! Turn on! Tune in! Make love, not war, my friend. Stoned past silly With Leary and Lilly Showed just how far A mind can bend. But Nam got hotter And unfortunate sons Who couldn't legally drink Got drunk from guns; And the massacres shared In their misery All got to be aired On primetime T.V. Viet Nam! Napalm! Hup two three four-- Veterans against the war. Five six seven eight-- What did we defoliate? POW, MIA, Agent Orange won't go away. Burn your draftcard. Take a hike. Canada's just up the pike. Fonda on a tank with poses. Fonda on a tank with poses. Oh! Oh! Oh. 3. There was a time With unlimited hours, With shoulders for panchos, With long hair for flowers, With no need for make-up On friendly young faces, With strangers for lovers, With Shambala places, With tie dye and trucking, With teeny bop tripping, With Jesus and gurus, With cool skinny dipping, With beads and bell bottoms With bare feet or sandals, With sprouts on the menu, With incense and candles, With commune for family, With people in motion, With songs of ideals- Sometimes a great notion. There was a time of Hoffman and Rubin, Of happening, love in And doobie doing, Of Pigpen and Keysey. Hells Angels and their mammas Were just riding easy. There was media circus For the Pentagon hex; There was Hog Farm, Native charm. Surreal sex. There was a time Of rhythm over rhyme, Of Woodstock, acid rock, Morrison, Slick, Strobe light, black light, Toke smoke thick, Of Wavy Gravy grooving To a merriment beat, Of Seven in Chicago Overcome by the heat, Of SDS and minidress And Doors of Perception, Of Altamont, the death knell Of the Bethel conception. 4. There were Berrigan brothers; There were Smothers to see; There were Donovan and Dylan And the Manson family-- Ta da da da, click click. Ta da da da, click click. "Bums"! said the president. Hate grew fat. Agnew and the Mitchells Told us where it is at. Love or leave America Was their cry; And many sweet souls Simply said goodbye. There were cities in riot With smoke on the water. There was tear gas breathing For the son and the daughter. There was Bobby shot down. There was Martin put under. There were Jackson State, Kent State, And Cambodian thunder. Nixon and Daly and Rhodes-- Oh my! Nixon and Daly and Rhodes-- Oh my! Oh no! Oh no! Where did life affirmation go? The people who said we ought to get high Were beaten into saying let it be. Get by. 5. Well the Weathermen went underground When music was the only sound That still survived the changing of the tide; And the weekend hippies came and went For the summer of love was already spent; And I knew that time would not relent-- The day the innocence died. You can't get what you want anymore At Alice's greasy spoon. You can't get where you've been before Since everyone's gone to the moon. Now the best way to stop a revolution Is to put it up for sale. The market place solution Is that fad will never fail To bring in the customers daily Who buy what they cannot do, While the video voyeur security Sucks the life right out of you. Oh Mary Jane, say it isn't true; Oh Mary Jane, say it wasn't you. They said you killed the children By the things you made them do. Oh Lord, won't you buy me a good working brain. Mine dims from losses, revive it again. It rushes past pleasure. It lingers on pain. Oh Lord, won't you buy me a good working brain. 6. Did the magic in the mushroom Blow up the prankster Bus? Jimi, Jim and Janice-- Did you die for us? Did the juice from the bud, Did the sugar-coated bead, Did the pale white horse In the poppy seed All mingle and mix In living breath Just to prove that the only freedom is death? 7. Well, I went down to Bear Creek To see what I could see. Well, I went down to Bear Creek To see what I could be; And I came home happy With whatever's left of me. It may be a phase, A nostalgic craze. Frisco is gone; And gone are the days; But I'm glad I went to Bear Creek To remember how to play Where an old man's music Will not fade away.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2015

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Date: 12/21/2015 8:47:00 AM
A pundit said that if you remember the 60s, you weren't there. Wrong! I was there. This poem is about the 60s--!964-1974. The references will only be known by those of us who were young in those days. It was a time of ideals. I've not seen that much creativity since.
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