Wednesday November 14, 2012

I am up in the middle of the night blogging from a Hampton Inn in Wyoming, MI and it's the Boss' fault.

Monday night in St. Paul, Bruce Springsteen played way too late - almost 11:30 before we danced to his final encore American Land.

I was on a plane for Michigan Tuesday - wheels up at 6:00am.  So Tuesday night, I went to bed too early and woke in the middle of the night with Springsteen songs still ringing in my ears.  It was so worth it.

I first saw Bruce live in 1979, not long after he had released Born to Run.  I was 15.  My copy of the Darkness on the Edge of Town record literally wore out with a critical scratch on the song Something in the Night. 

Bruce played Something in the Night Monday night.  Brought me to tears.  So did his quiet reflection as he brought the sound down and introduced the E Street Band during My City of Ruins.  The Boss slowed the song and silenced a building of 18,000 to acknowledge the ghosts from each of our lives; those we have lost. He encouraged us to reflect.  Jen and I held each other tight. It felt good.

Ironic that this was happening in Exel Energy Center where Shannon, Erin and Jen and I spent one of the most memorable days of "the journey" a year ago.  Impossible.  I have a picture to prove it otherwise I might not believe it.

October 2011, Wild Day with Shannon and Erin at the X

The X is built in the footprint of the old St. Paul Civic Center where I danced in the dark with Bruce and the E Streeters many times.  Sort of hallowed ground for me and my development as a human being (and a rocker).  So to have some time for quiet reflection in the middle of a rock concert Monday was meaningful.  It was as if Bruce knew we needed to acknowledge the fertile ground we have covered over these last 20 months.

Of course, Bruce could have been reflecting on the death of his beloved Big Man - the long time Sax man for the E Streeters, Clarence Clemons.  Or for the recent losses in his native Jersey Shore.  Or for 9/11 victims which is why My City of Ruins was released.  So many of the the Boss' songs are like that - lots of room for reflection, interpretation, application to ones own situation.  Songs with meaning in the micro and macro.

Now there's tears on the pillow
Darling where we slept
And you took my heart when you left
Without your sweet kiss
My soul is lost, my friend
Now tell me how do I begin again?

My city's in ruins
My city's in ruins

Thanks for another exhausting show, Boss.  And for the gratitude I am feeling this morning in this Land of Hope and Dreams.