Funny how things come back to you.  And when I felt it in my hands again it was right.  It was right in my hands.  Like I’d been holding it a long time.  Like I’d always been holdin’ it…  No, I can’t say I missed going to Alabama, to Tuskegee, and that’s the funny thing about history, about what gets recorded—how it all comes back.  You can say your life is this or that.  Because of this or that, and I ain’t sayin’ everything happens for a reason—it’s just how time works.  How it works on you—like a playful friend, always pulling pranks…  Somethin’ got finished.  I know that.  Johnny had a look in his eye—a guard up—after that night we met.  The night of the wreck.  The night of Nina’s murder.  Like someone took a pen and erased his past.  What you know after you know something.  And the way we got treated.  By Popovitch—Nina’s father.  Well, that was no mystery either.  You give up time for something else.  And then that time becomes a memory.  Whether it’s a good memory or not depends on what you gave up.  And that’s where sometimes choices haunt you…  But they teach you too.  They teach you to take the history out of the choice.  For what you feel now is not what you’ll feel later.  And when you know that.  When you really know what you know—you ain’t that surprised when it all comes back.  The surprise you like about it not being surprised…  Yeah, it felt right in my hands.  The missing string easy to replace.  Making it sound the same.  As when I played at The Hi-Way Host.  Scratch’s roadhouse shack.  And watched Rosie dance.  And I didn’t care where it had been.  I didn’t think about that when I left it and I didn’t think about it when I got it back.  You shouldn’t look for that in rooms you go into.  You shouldn’t try to sense it in objects.  Just like I didn’t question the justice of it.  Popovitch had to write his own story.  And Johnny and me were just minor characters in that story.  We weren’t the history, though we had history.  No, if Nina really loved him then maybe she didn’t really die for nothin’.  Maybe that’s why he and I met.  So our history could continue after Popovitch’s history was over.  And Nina livin’ on too.  In how she introduced us as musicians.  In the music we played together afterwards…  It really was a strange boot camp—my enlistment—a strange return to Mississippi.  I didn’t lose nothin’ I came with.  And Johnny really lost nothin’ either.  We were military men now.  And I found prison guards have a lot of time on their hands to play music…

            –David Threnody, on Biloxi—from his journals 1948 to 1955

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