LOS ANGELES — I’d go to the cafe and work on lyrics, even try to pen the novel a few times. I never finished it, but I heard the boys—Jude, Cal, Sam and (mostly) Quinby—are making some good headway on it now, that they’re using Jude as the narrator; and that they’re writing the whole thing under my name! They’re always doing that. Hey, I applaud the effort. Full speed ahead. I won’t jinx it by talking about the book any further. The “good book” as Cal calls it.
It’s probably best to cover everything that’s happened these past three years, since I’ve been away. In brief, I’ve been in the wilderness, camping across America and traveling through Europe by train. I’ve met a few new musicians, writers, mountain men (and women), travelers, French poets and Spanish painters—all of whom I’ll be talking about soon. At least that’s the plan. If I don’t, then the boys will.
Be wary, it could be any one of them writing to you. Like I said, they like to write under my name.
Cal Corso, last I heard, had returned to Big Sur, though I think he left again, going farther north through the ol’ PNW. He’s heading as high up as Olympic, I think. He might have even crossed the border into Vancouver. Sam Lyons was in the Smoky Mountains just a few weeks ago. Quinby is all over the place, but I think he’ll be relocating to Los Angeles with the rest of us in just a few months. And Jude is here, playing his guitar, writing poems on scrap paper, working on new music. I listened to his first record again, just last night. It sounded like a whole new record when I heard it. But again, maybe I’m the changed one.
As I went out walking this morning, I recalled the latest maxim written by Sam Lyons. At first, when Jude and Cal first set out west, the list was originally at four.
1. Play music often
2. Keep a written journal
3. Don’t be an ass
4. Don’t get killed
Those are still the core principles, but the boys have added quite a few in the time since. Anyway, here’s the latest. It’s more an aphorism than a maxim.
Belief is a poor substitute for experience.
Sounds like something Sam would say. I wouldn’t be so reckless as to say that it sums up their adventures, or Who They Are for that matter, because their beliefs definitely fuel their actions and their own respective disciplines. But each of those boys are hungry, always, for experience. It’s a cornerstone of their spirituality. Certainly, at least, if we define spirituality as that ongoing sense of connection to oneself, to the planet, and to others, by means of experience. I just know that’s how I define it, and I know these boys are living, breathing examples of that most sacred vocation.
The more you hear from them, the more you read their words or hear their music, you might even feel the same way.
Time will tell.
Until then, I remain as ever…
Your Faithful Friend,