I’m sitting here in my writer’s garret staring out the window. A full moon hangs high in the sky. The weather is warm and a breeze drifts in through my open window. I tell Google to play my favorite radio channel from Pandora. It’s mostly 1960’s and 1970’s music and I close my eyes to let the music surround me. ‘Henry the Eighth’ by Herman’s Hermits comes on and the images stretch out from a past life and pull my mind back to a simpler time. Before responsibilities of family and jobs consumed every moment; before the worries about how much money was enough money and before those dear to me departed to their heavenly home.
You see, Henry the Eighth was a favorite song from our youth. It was playing on the radio that night the front tire slipped into the loose gravel along the side of the road and sent us rolling end over end. I suppose it was a miracle that no one suffered any injuries, except Phillip, who got a bloody nose when I ‘accidentally’ kicked him in the face. We just pushed the car back over onto its wheels and drove back to town like nothing happened.
Now, when I hear the song, I see myself in my brother Norman’s 1966 Oldsmobile. With us three youngest brothers Paul, Phil and me rolling around the back seat while Norman performs ‘Bat turns’. My brother David in the passenger’s seat serving as the official co-pilot, beverage controller and radio technician.
We’ll cruise down those ancient gravel roads that lead us to nowhere in particular, just five brothers sliding through the darkness with the AM radio blaring out the day’s top twenty hits. None of us giving a damn about anything but the moment.
Oh youth, you make me smile.