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One of Many Reasons to Write With Your Heart and Soul

The reason is in one of the best tribute country songs produced

By Lee J. Bentch Published 2 years ago 3 min read
One of Many Reasons to Write With Your Heart and Soul
Photo by Gabriel Gurrola on Unsplash

This is a story about two famous country singers and two old friends and how the lyrics of a 38 year old song bond the two. This is a tribute to Hank Williams Sr. and David Allen Coe.

I had a conversation the other day with an old friend who asked why I write. His question was extraordinary, driven by a sincere curiosity to understand my motive.

I quietly thought for a few seconds, letting the silence speak to the seriousness of the response I was about to give him. Silence speaks loudly when used in the right context. And his question hit a topic which I am passionate about.

As friends for many decades, our lives have taken circuitous paths over a few years. We lost touch and stumbled on each other through social media. We then met in a quiet bar, enjoying our company to get caught up.

We had both aged gracefully; our families grew and left, a few of our familiar friends died from disease or moved to senior living facilities. He and I sat like two old survivors of life in general, sharing stories of the past and the times we spent as long-time members of a volunteer firefighting force forty years ago.

Sipping our scotch and comparing our maladies, we spent hours talking about his heart surgery, my wife's death, his grandkids, my parents, his wife's health, his golf game, my career, his job, and my passion for writing.

It was as if we hadn't seen each other in ten years. The reality is we hadn't seen or communicated in twelve years. We lost touch and now had reunited for old time's sake.

His questions still stood, why do I spend my time writing instead of playing golf, like we used to do? What compels me to spend time sitting behind a laptop instead of time at the gun range?

I was speechless for what seemed like an eternity but was only a few seconds. Looking him in the eye, I said with all seriousness, "Bill, I'm driven to let folks know what I feel inside."

And at that moment, the country song in the background shifted to David Allen Coe's famous tribute to Hank Williams.

The song I heard playing was The Ride.

“Drifter, can ya make folks cry when you play and sing? Have you paid your dues, can you moan the blues? Can you bend them guitar strings?”

He said, “Boy, can you make folks feel what you feel inside? ’Cause if you’re big star bound let me warn ya, it’s a long, hard ride”

The lyrics and song are available to the public on multiple websites: these were extracted from:

The song can be applied to the struggles and success of any artist, writer, photographer, singer, songwriter, poet, and journalist. The lyrics are strong, speaking to the inner core of our inspiration.

My friend and I parted ways a few hours later. Our commitment to staying in touch, tracking down any of our old friends for a reunion, and sending regards to our own families, seemed like cliches in the circle of life.

My gut tells me that's the last time we will see each other. Our paths have grown apart as our interests and lifestyles now differ. Our friendship will remain intact, our memories are solid, but time and distance will work against us. We will depend on social media to stay in touch.

Was it a coincidence that the song that motivates me to continue writing played on the radio when I quoted a line in its lyrics?

That question lingers in my mind daily.

80s music

About the Creator

Lee J. Bentch

I am a general interest author actively involved with technology and communications. My inspiration to write is multi-dimensional. I am a multi-service Veteran.with a Masters in Communications from the University of Northern Colorado.

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