I Wish For Just One Day You Could Stand Inside My Shoes

It’s 5 days after Bob Dylan’s 75th Birthday by my calculations.

We have been invited by long term friend, Ged Keilty, to attend a celebratory event at The King and the Queen, Foley St, London.

Its an immediate yes to the invite but it arrives with a smidgen of trepidation. We are not sure what to expect. We arrive with Tom and Rita. We being; Bean and me. We have eaten at Ethos previously reviewed on this blog and we have already had some disappointment. Mine is based on a mistake. Too much dry food. Not enough sauce. We all need sauce.

The King and The Queen is filling up. A football crowd look forward to a second Champions League Final between Athletico and Real. But there is no sign of Ged. We look outside for a second entrance. There is one way in and one way out. I stand a round and ask a bar keep where the folk might be. We are directed upstairs.

song for woody ged

Steve as started with Song to Woody if I am not mistaken. We pop our heads into the room. We are warmly welcomed. Ged explains the score. There will be a number of solo spots. Only songs pre-dating May 65 are allowed. Martin, Dave (? so many names to learn and remember) and Ged are to follow in line. John will lead a quiz. The evening will end with a jam. The players will stand where Dylan stood way back in 62/63. His first performance was on the Beeb in this place. Ged celebrated with a song recital of the lesser known Gliding Swan. Reverence is overtaken by laughter. A mood swings in as songs are sung. Respect lives here. But its light.

The mood is set for the greatest quiz on Dylan ever. Here we are, one and all, with some unbroken attachment to the man named Bob. Some of us know the bard too well for our sanity not to be in question. Others have shared a dalliance with the gold dust repertoire. Others sit in between knowing and not knowing so it is another strain of trepidation comes into being. Will we reveal ourselves as no hope, no nothings, (Rita does) or will we become competitive (I know I do) only to fail. The point remains at all times however, that it doesn’t matter. The game is inclusive and guess work works well for some. Bean is glad for instant to have guessed grey at one point or was it gray? Any sum you achieve at the end is yours and there to be also celebrated. It is no surprise and no great thing tha ged got one more point than Steve. There is no prize. Only kudos from Newcastle which John would have us believe starts with a ‘C’.

And then the jam. Its not tart and it doesn’t make for a country pie. It remains sweet and provides room for guest vocals. We all sing together. We are a birthday choir. We have lit the candles. Time passes slowly up here in the mountains. Not long before we encore with Knocking on Heavens Door.

My blog or at least this blog has turned into a celebration of survival, it is an ode to life. So good tonight to witness the life of another poet.


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