The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

They Were Collaborators #429

Merle Haggard and The Strangers


Vanwall said...

An elegant group. Great picture!

Laurent Delpit said...

Dear Tom,
I've been reading your blog for quite some time and always wondered if the word collaborators was in the negative sense of the word
i guess not, but i needed to ask you,

SomeNYGuy said...

Those jackets are The Strangest!

mike said...

love merle

Tom Sutpen said...


It's a neutral use of the term, not meant to celebrate or damnify. It can include Astaire and Rogers, or Leopold and Loeb, or any two individuals who embark on a single endeavor.

Laurent Delpit said...

merci TOM