Sunday, September 7, 2008

Silver Fire

Toketee Lake

During my college years I worked in the Summer as an engineering intern for a private power company that had generation facilities at Toketee Falls, Oregon. Toketee Falls is located on the North Umpqua Highway 138 about 20 miles from Diamond Lake. I have made posts with photos of this beautiful area previously.

A Campfire

Being a student and the minimum wage pay given me, I could not afford the housing this company provided at their facilities, so I elected to just camp out all summer long while I worked there. My good friend that I mentioned previously in a post, worked on a fire suppression crew for the State Forest Service whose headquarters were also located at Toketee Falls. He decided to get out of the bunks and camp right there with me and he could be easily notified with his pager, if he had to suddenly take off to fight forest fires.

This was basically the formulation of a great many friends who would join us in the evening around the campfire after working all day, singing, drinking, joking, and just 'cutting up'. Of course we had a mixture of guys and gals that entertained themselves with other vices than just the drink. After an evening of merriment we would then become tired and go to our respective tents or sleeping quarters and 'crash'. Of course, when the weekends came, we would really party, visit waterfalls, hike and make another temporary camp while fishing, and just enjoy the outdoors.

I always felt sorry (at least for a little while) for the fire suppression crew after a night of our partying. For they were up at dawn for their daily exercise routine, which meant a five mile run around the Toketee Reservoir and calisthenics before breakfast. These guys really had to stay in shape for their jobs, they were front-line fire suppression fighters.

After becoming fast friends (many of us were together for about 3 summers in a row); we each developed 'nicknames'. There was STRETCH (yeah a guy at least 6'7"), BEAR (hairy guy-black long fuzzy curly hair and beard), COWBOY (my best bud from Wyoming), Pollock (a name he preferred), SHITMAN (a guy always saying.. shhhhhheeeeet maaaaannn), STONY (I won't go there) and yours truly, either ROBINHOOD (well, I had the campfire site and they were my merry men er.. and women) or STARFOX (yeah, before the popular game). Well I won't name them all, but you get the idea.

One evening, after singing, laughing, joking, and stuff; I was just fiddling with the guitar and out popped a short song, the lyrics I share with you now:

Listen if you will to the following song by clicking here

Silver Fire

I will sit by you
and rest awhile
Take off my burden
for a while.....

By a Sea
of Silver Fire
We'll light our pipes
and dream of days
for a while.....

We'll sing the Bronze of Afternoons
And Rhyme the light of distant Stars
And when my wandering feet return
And the Future guides my Way
I'll think of Songs and Afternoons
And be glad.

I've traveled long to taste the Sun,
seen the joys and felt the hardness of life,
I've passed some time on fruit and wine,
filled my cup with the bitter nectar of life.

And in the Bronze of Afternoons
And by the light of distant Stars
I've met with fate and I have learned,
that my time will someday end,
But I've had Songs and Afternoons,
and I am glad.


QM said...

Thanks for sharing you lyrics. I wish there was music to hear with the words. I'm sure that would add so much to the already expressive words.


Loreen said...

W.O.W! Thanks for sharing, this is incredible!!