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By Bobwhite
ImageEvery day I walk up the hill, past the cemetery, to the top of the western ridge of the valley in which we live. In not-so-ancient times, a forest of giant white pines had transitioned into a rolling oak savanna along the way. As I walk, I often imagine what the countryside looked like then; prairie and white oaks and plum thickets... as far as the eye could see.

On my way out, I walk the sand track to the west and occasionally stop to pick up the odd piece of agate that finds me there, and I think. This morning I'd chosen to listen to a short narration by Steve Earle, "The Moment In 1965 When Rock and Roll Becomes Art"... and when Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clarke were mentioned, I remembered my friend, Jeff.

As a boy, Jeff was taught to play the guitar by Townes and Guy (as he called them) and it was Clarke who made him his first guitar... when Steve Earle was perhaps, five or six years old.

Jeff was one of the most thoughtful and kind men I've ever known or had the privilege of traveling and fishing with, and as I thought of him a wave of loss washed over me and my eyes teared. When I wiped away the grief and my eyes refocused, I noticed that a large yellow butterfly had landed on the damp sand at my feet.

As I resumed my walk, the swallowtail kept pace with me, flittering back and forth between the walls of the forest on either side of the track, sometimes falling behind, other times flying ahead, but always looping back to rejoin me. We traveled together like this for a mile or so before he left... and I thanked Jeff for the comfort.Image
Jeff Holberg.jpg
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By LA Fly Guy
Pouring one for Jeff.

I'm sure he's missed by many.
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By woolly bugger
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By fatman
dogspeed, BigGuy
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By slapshot
he'll be missed. i'll pour a sip this weekend. sorry, my friend.
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By Redchaser
Big Guy was certainly one of the good ones. I didn't know he played guitar and certainly didn't know who taught him. Jeff's in good company though, because you are certainly one of the "good ones" too Bob.


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