Mary Travers


The tent had collapsed in the blistering rain of the Outer Banks. Miles from any kind of light but our own and we just couldn’t stop laughing. Neither of us having any business setting up a tent.

 

Piling all our soaking stuff into the back seat. Didn’t take very long. We didn’t have very much. And then still laughing, driving through the night green soaked North Carolina forests. Back to your parents house in Chapel Hill. And if the ride were to take forever, that would be OK. The rain, the windshield wipers the tires gliding down dark deserted pavement through the trees.

 

And because we both knew every word to every song, we thought the ride might last forever.

 

Mary Travers sang: “Follow me, where I go. Who I am and what I know. Make it part of you, to be a part of me.”

 

Then when she sang “Though the cities start to crumble, and the towers fall around us, the sun is slowly sinking, and it’s colder than the sea” —-we thought we knew big thoughts and would do big things. There was no horizon to possibility. The night time North Carolina road went on forever.

 

Mary Travers, not just singing with Peter and Paul, but giving voice to us in that car, in that rainstorm, when she sang, “Any day now, any day now, I shall be released.”  We thought we knew what that song meant too. And maybe somewhere deep we both did. Maybe that’s why we both laughed in the rain when the tent came down.

 

Mary Travers gone. So is all our laughing innocence.

 

But Mary leaves us her song. And we remember the words.

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