What Changes a Life

I had a weird, but really interesting morning yesterday. I spent it with a guy who told me about how he’d changed his life after a DMT trip.

Apparently, taking this trip made him realize that he hated himself and that a lot of the destructive or unproductive things he was doing with himself were because of this self-hatred and he realized that this self-hatred was stupid because we are just a small part of a large and mysterious universe. A tiny speck.

So, he got his shit together. He went to counseling. He started a vigorous and interesting religious study that’s now very meaningful to him. He’s made peace with himself.

It’s not the kind of conversation you think you’re going to have with a stranger on an ordinary day, but I feel really honored to have had it.

I told him how I always experience Two Boots as a weird, mystical place. Not in a grand “woo woo” way, but just in a mundane, but nicely strange way–people dancing or singing along to the music, interesting conversations being held, that kind of thing. So, we went there for lunch and a woman at another table was eating her pizza and wearing a huge gold crown.

“See?” I asked. “I told you so.”

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Coyote Song?

This morning, the dog and I were coming back across the back yards when we heard a dog bark, a dog bark I didn’t recognize, but I certainly don’t know all the dogs farther north. But the dog barked a couple of times and then there was silence and then we heard this: a long howl, “Aw0000000,” and over the long howl, a sound like this “Ah woo, Ah woo” pause, “Ah woo, ah woo.”

And I felt this electricity go through my body because I couldn’t quite tell what was making the noise–though I think it must have been coyotes because it made the dog and the cat nervous–but I recognized the “Ah woo, ah woo” part.

But how? I don’t know coyote songs. I certainly don’t have knowledge of some canon of greatest hits of coyote songs.

But it was the same sounds Sid Hemphill makes at the beginning of “Devil’s Dream.” And it made me wonder if Sid Hemphill heard coyotes out in the fields in the early morning, too. Had coyotes made their way into Mississippi by then? I mean, I know he’s playing an actual song and I know a hand-hewn flute only sounds like itself. I know it’s just a coincidence.

But it’s the kind of coincidence that makes me so lucky to experience it.