June 17th was a roman candle of delights. It began with Mike Perry asking if I'd be down to collaborate with John Mark's dancers from Minneapolis. Very much yes. John Mark was a swell guy. (This is my favorite choreography he did for Har Mar Superstar. It's a treasure.) For our collaboration, I decided to recite "Home: Hell or High Water" because of its moods and changes. A group of four dancers then interpreted my words as I spoke. They'd never heard the piece before. Here I am staying out of their way just before going on stage.
I also did a teensy recitation of "Green, Green" for about six people in the woods. Then I recited another hour in the Escape Installation. I bopped back over to the artists' tent for more of that cornbread, and that's when the clouds parted. I got to share a simple moment with Paul Simon. There is nothing like meeting someone who you thought only existed in your heart. Paul, you're the boy in the bubble. The archangel. The long lost pal. His set with YMusic was extra special that evening.
Another highlight was shaking hands with Jeff Tweedy, whose songwriting meant a lot to me in high school. Still does. Wilco's bassist John Stirratt was also a sweetheart and I believe he is as enthusiastic about boats as I am. Except only one of us actually owns one. I enjoy being around all kinds of folks, but artists make my heart hum. I am neither original nor alone in this sentiment.
I was grateful I got to personally thank Mike Perry, Michael Brown, Trace Richolson, and Justin Vernon for including me and making me feel welcome at the festival. Still, thank you all once more. Maybe twice. I've never been treated so well.
For the rest of you, I hope electronic appreciation will suffice. If not, then be sure to collect your human gratitude next time you see me. In the meantime, thank you to everyone who took the time to watch me recite on stage and at the Escape. Time is spiritual currency, and I don't take yours lightly.
Thank you Danya, and your buddy with the blue hair, for visiting the Escape and for buying my book. Thanks to everyone who bought Revelry & Rhyme, that means a great deal to me. Thank you to The Local Store for selling it in your adorable tent. Many thanks to Piet Levy at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel for considering me among the festival bests. Thank you Benjamin Wick for your photos. Also thanks to all the volunteers, sound gurus (Cole), and security guards (Tracy). I also want to thank those who took the time to email me kind words including Molly, Peter, Gary, Mark, and especially Phil. You all rule.
Finally, thank you to every one of you who attended Eaux Claires Troix. There was a spirit of peace and celebration over the weekend, and we shared it together. I won't forget it. For those who rocked, I salute you.