Troubadour

I think back, now and then, just how lucky I’ve been
With the lands I’ve been privileged to know,
All the curious faces and magical places I’ve seen,
How in many a new land I’ve taken a new hand
In friendship beginning to grow,
My first trip at eighteen and the many long years in between.

When I first left my land and arrived in Japan,
A whole new world was opened to me,
And the people I saw and the new culture all were so strange.
Though at first I was blind, I was opening my mind
And I soon was beginning to see
That our smiles were the same, and with that came the start of the change.And the more that I saw, there was more that I wanted to see,
And right from the start, I gave thanks in my heart
That this chance had been granted to me.

University inside the Wall of Berlin
In the seventies seems like a dream
And I still count my time there among the best years of my life.
As my studies went forth, a young girl from the North-
Country came, and we soon were a team,
And in spring, in the shade of the elms there, I made her my wife.When the summers would come I would put out my thumb
Just to see where a new road would lead—
Copenhagen or Bergen or Amsterdam—give me a ride!
Maybe Paris as well, maybe Stockholm or Helsinki,
Only a few things I’d need,
Never knowing how far, my guitar always there by my side.How the time seemed to fly as my path took me hither and yon,
But I saved all I could of my memories and friends
In my journals as I traveled on.

I can feel the heat still from the day Broken Hill
Was a hundred fourteen in the shade,
Hear the magical songs of the bell birds and magpies at dawn,
Where the Ghost Gums grow tall and the forest rains fall,
Smell the scent of the fragrance they made,
Feel the land cry for rain where the Nullarbor Plain stretches on.On New Zealand’s South Island I’ve traveled the high land
To where the Fox River is born
In its glacier of ice, ere it slices its way to the sea;
From the Cape in the East to Otago
I’ve feasted my eyes on her many a morn;
With her mountains and rivers a part of me ever will be.And the more that I saw, there was more that I wanted to see.
And right from the start, I gave thanks in my heart
That this chance had been granted to me.

Now, from Sydney’s white sails to the green Yorkshire Dales,
The Aegean’s indelible blue
Off the cliffs of Dubrovnik, to Reykjavik, strange on the tongue,
And from Montevideo to Botany Bay, from Managua to Mexico too,
In the pubs from Bemidji to Belfast my songs I have sung.

And Duluth, Minnesota’s the place where I’ll go
When it’s time to be settling down
To a home on the hill overlooking the Lake of Superior
With the sunlight at play on the breast of her bay
And her autumn’s incredible crown —
How I long for her song! Everywhere I have gone, I could hear her.How I’ve longed for her song—everywhere I have gone,
If I listened, I always could hear her!

(C) 2002, Gary D. Bolstad, KrikitMusic

About krikitarts

Welcome to Krikit Arts! I'm a veterinarian; photographer; finger-style guitarist, composer, instructor, and singer/songwriter; fisherman; and fly-tyer. Please enjoy--and please respect my full rights to all photos on this Website!
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27 Responses to Troubadour

  1. Ms. Liz says:

    Gorgeous celebration of your journeys, adventures, friends and music! enjoyed reading this so much Gary. Nigel came by the post box this evening, hoping to listen to music tomorrow :)

  2. This is such a lovely post. Nicely worded with great complimentary imagery.

  3. Adrian Lewis says:

    Wonderful stuff, my friend, wonderful memories! :)

  4. Happy reminiscing to you. “What a long strange trip it’s been,” right? It’s good that you can rejoice in the people you’ve known and the places you’ve visited. Your mention of Minnesota and a girl from the North Country couldn’t help but remind me of Bob Dylan. I checked a map to see exactly where in Minnesota Duluth is; I hadn’t remembered how close to the Wisconsin border it is, nor that Interstate 35, which passes through Austin (often slowly), claims its northern terminus in Duluth.

    • krikitarts says:

      I was trusting that you’d catch the Dylan nod. CD is from Minneapolis. And yes, Duluth is very happily situated at the tip of the nose of the wolf’s head that is Lake Superior.

  5. I take it that’s toe-toe in your penultimate photo, and not alien invasive pampas grass.

  6. Homesick…. are you really heading home

  7. Peter Klopp says:

    What a wonderfully poetic way to describe your life, Gary!

  8. Meanderer says:

    What a wonderful, fun, and interesting post! Lovely to see the Yorkshire Dales in there (or God’s Own Country as they call it!) :-)

    • krikitarts says:

      I’ve loved the tales of the Yorkshire Dales for decades, thanks to my studies and the original James Herriot books and the BBC TV series. I’ve been privileged to visit them twice and, thanks to this memory prod, may have to revisit my archives and send one out with a nod to you.

  9. bluebrightly says:

    Thanks for sharing this romp through the places you have been – or some of them anyway. Kudos for putting it all together. :-)

  10. What a great way to look back on your personal history, Gary. I can barely remember what I was doing last week much less my entire life to date which has not seen nearly all the wonderful adventure yours has. I certainly could not put it to verse as you have so skillfully done. The images all blend well with your writing. And although I generally prefer nature over people my favorite is of you and CD. Sweet.

  11. krikitarts says:

    I appreciate your compliment very much, Steve. Your claim of experiencing last-week-memory weakness gave me a good laugh, even if I am rather skeptical. And, yes, I’ve always cherished that particular wedding photo. The photographer was not a pro, but he really came through with that one.

    • I often get in trouble with my boss at work when I forget some task she asked me to do within minutes of returning to the warehouse. Not all pros make the best images. My folks hired a professional wedding photographer for my brother’s wedding and they hated the images…one especially with my mother’s mouth open and full of food. Seriously! That is a delightful image of the two of you. You obviously had woven a spell over the sweet young woman.

      • krikitarts says:

        I think I may have once forgotten a task by one of my bosses, through the years, but I’ve forgotten which one, and if I really did. Selective amnesia is a very useful tool. Regarding this image, I think I entrusted my camera (Pentax Spotmatic) to one of my friends in attendance and he came through with this. And as for the spell–I am still amazed that she embraced it and made it possible for us to weave this tapestry of wonder together.

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