Yesterday after eating a small family’s ration at brunch, I went to give penance for 90 minutes at the gym. The first 30 was all the slow lengthening of old muscles that still stretch. I’m grateful to be able to do that. 15 minute shorts each of treadmill walking and spinner cycling was followed by 30 on the elliptical that started strong, but faded right about the time Led Zeppelin’s “Presence” ended. I strode on for awhile before the silence reminded me I had run out of musical propellant.
I quickly pulled up the song I wanted from Spotify for the ten plus minutes left on the countdown. I was tired and what thoughts hadn’t been driven out by exhaustion were now being blasted out by David Gilmour’s guitar. Then a little beyond the 9:23 mark with guitar chords shredding the walls of my mind like wallpaper falling from steam, I felt his peaceful presence. I was in shadows of the co-pilot chair in a white ’69 Camaro ragtop, and we were one, just like so many other times inside that song and others. No words were spoken. None were back then. We were just hanging out and lost in the music, my dead friend and me.