Posts Tagged ‘bob dylan’

Our neighbor Richard, at the market this morning, enthused about the sound of swifts round the barn and the big blue sky.

On the drive home a hare peeked out to sniff the air–checking on Spring and whether it was safe to cross the road.

The bees are buzzing and beginning to busy themselves around the Judas tree.

The donkey up at the farm just eee-awed.

The walnut trees are leafing out at last.

Something is happening here (and you don’t know what  it is–do you Mr Jones!*)–and it’s about time!

A good day–perhaps–to tempt fate with an early summer lunch dish–roast red pepper halves.

I see they featured just over a year ago with chèvre(goat’s cheese); todays’ will be with the thinnest slivers (easier to do than say fast!) of garlic and anchovies, melting into the tomato juices.

for 2

2/3 red peppers–carefully halved so they sit level on the baking tray

6 tinned (canned) tomatoes–halved

2 garlic cloves–sliced as thin as can be

4 anchovy fillets

olive oil

salt and pepper

a few thyme stems

set oven to 200C/400F

  • Cover a baking tray with foil–(saves time scraping after the tray has been in a hot oven).
  • Brush with olive oil to avoid the peppers sticking.
  • Place the peppers side by side on the tray.
  • Fill each half with tomato pieces, three or four slithers of garlic and an anchovy fillet on each.
  • Season well with salt and pepper.
  • Drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil over each half.
  • Bake in the hot oven for 3/4 hour–checking after half an hour–but they need to be thoroughly tender to be delicious.
And a simple green salad to serve.

from Ballad of a Thin Man by Bob Dylan-lyrics

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Levon Helm the drummer of The Band–(in the middle here):

He died a few days before his 72nd birthday, after a long battle with cancer of the throat.

His soaring voice on the Band’s  The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down always makes my hair stand on end.

I saw them live two nights running at the Albert Hall in London, in the mid-seventies.

The group had not played in the UK since being booed off stage when they backed Bob Dylan at the Isle of Wight Festival at the end of the sixties.

Dylan fans were objecting to him “going electric”.

As I approached my entrance door I passed the artists’ Stage Door, where a large black Austin Princess limo had just parked and THEY were getting out–an unexpected thrill!

A moment after finding my seat they walked onto the stage and started the set without a word.

After giving a stunning performance and being rapturously received–Robbie Robertson, the Canadian lead guitarist, spoke quietly into the mic saying: “Thank you and good night,“–the only direct address to the audience that night. Then he, Garth Hudson, Rick Danko, Richard Manuel and Levon Helm left the stage. Clearly the memory of the Isle of Wight still lingered.

As I walked round the building heading for home, a black Austin Princess glided silently passed me gathering speed.

I went back the following night.

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I’ll be seventy tomorrow!

OMG!–I don’t believe it–you must be kidding…!

Three score years and ten–the biblical allowance.

(It gives me pause to think that twenty years ago I was 49 and twenty years before that I was 29 and in twenty years–with a bit of luck and a following wind–I’ll be 89!)

I remember not liking reaching 40–it felt like the end of something.

[Forty is the old age of youth–(Hosea Ballou)].

Seventy doesn’t seem so bad–paradoxically.

Could be that I’m enjoying this new found means of expression–more like a beginning than an ending.

It’s a lottery though and as the French say “on ne sait jamais!” [you never know].

My mother Molly died aged 68 and father Tony, eleven months later–the same age.

Brother Peter was only 58–Meredith’s brother Storm was 60, as was her mother, Dodie.

All of them with more to give, all of them too young.

I’m still here.

“Keep on keeping on…”

And resolve to follow Bob Dylan’s advice to try to–Stay Forever Young!–(at heart that is).


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