Shady Gate


When I was young the mom next door would 
have tea at our house and she said her heart was
broke and she told me that life was based on faith in
the Evermore but me I was always trying to find a way
to get a dime and go outside and play. It was pretty
weird my childhood years, especially with the 
transference of those dreaded adult fears that I 
remember a song the moms would sing and we'd
sing along...

"If you go through that Shady Gate
Have soneone near who is for you
Someone who will not mind to wait
As you go slow through shady gate."

He left my mom when I was ten. She said she
didn't give a damn...that they'd never amount to 
anything and they woke me up one night in the
middle of an awful fight and I heard him yell 'What 
about my needs?' and her hiss back "Why don't you
wake up all the neighbours too but please just leave 
me be, another kid would finish me" and in the
morning while I ate my cereal he left...I didn't look 
so I
didn't see...and she got a better job in the new
department store and me I had to rush right home
from school and feed the kids...they didn't ask about
him much.

But I asked her once about 'Shady Gate'. It was
late one night whiel we were hanging out the laundry
and she said that Shady Gate was when sweet time
won't wait, it's like when a choice gets made like a
deck been laid and maybe the sun will shine or
maybe it won't at all but whatever is coming for you
you get to have it all. And I wanted to ask her then
exactly what he'd meant by 'needs' but we had to
rush inside the winter made her fingers split and 

And he knocked upon the door before my next
birthday and my mom looked real upset and she sent
us out to play and when we came back in it looked
like she'd been crying hard and him he tried to hug us
then and he said he loved us all. He said, "Anything
you want all you have to do is say" and my mind 
raced to the brand new pair of jeans I'd seen at
school that day but you know that night when we
slept the monsters didn't come and I dreamt we sang
the song out loud only this time with a drum...

"If you go through that Shady Gate
Have soneone near who is for you
Someone who will not mind to wait
As you go slow through Shady Gate"

...I like the way you held your head and how you
muttered right out loud...the things you
were so serious and I didn't believe at first you 
there was still some place you had to go and still
something you had to know. "Well, wash your face"
my good friend tells me and "Clean your house in
troubled times"...I must admit it helps an awful lot to
go on loving what you love you see I've even trained
my mind, I'm not afraid to look behind. It's a cool 
falling with the night birds calling and I dare not
wonder where you be. But it's times like this I wish I 
had a line to mother love or even just another word 
for Eternity.