I was in West Texas, driving through long stretches of nothing, then little towns where stores on the dusty main street were empty and closed: Windows still advertised sales ending five years ago.
The only living buildings were churches, and convenience stores on the highway.
Then I saw a man sitting on a bench, playing a guitar. He was the only human on the street except me.
He was decorated with badges and sunglasses, a bristled face, and a hat so old the felt was worn clear through.
He could play.
Maybe it was “Desperado,” maybe “Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain.” Maybe it was something he made up; half cowboy, half blues.
I don’t know who he was, and I’ve forgotten the name of the town: Someplace between Post and Sonora, Pecos and Paint Rock.
Texas. It grabs your heart.