That Old Time Feelin’

Guy Clark is one of my favorite artists. He has a wonderful song that really captures a feeling that I get every now and then. It’s called That Old Time Feelin’, and here are the words:

And that old time feelin’ goes sneakin’ down the hall,
Like an old gray cat in winter, keepin’ close to the wall.
And that old time feelin’ comes stumblin’ up the street,
Like an old salesman kickin’ the papers from his feet.

And that old time feelin’ draws circles around the block,
Like old women with no children, holdin’ hands with the clock.
And that old time feelin’ fall on it’s face in the park,
Like and old wino prayin’ he can make it ’till it’s dark.

And that old time feelin’ comes and goes in the rain,
Like an old man with his checkers, dyin’ to find a game.
And that old time feelin’ plays for beer in bars,
Like and old blues-time picker who don’t recall who you are.

And that old time feelin’ limps through the night on a crutch,
Like an old soldier wonderin’ if he’s paid too much.
And that old time feelin’ rocks and spits and cries,
Like and old lover rememberin’ the girl with the clear blue eyes.

I don’t know that these words specifically refer to the way I’m feeling, but the song itself is definitely evocative of the general way I feel on days like today. It is sort of a homesickness. I read The Narnian a few weeks back, and it is the feeling I think C.S. Lewis referred to as Joy. Alan Jacobs describes joy in Lewis’ thought as follows,

“One cannot say it is exactly pleasurable – there is a kind of ache in the sense of unattainability that always accompanies the longing – and yet, as Lewis puts it, the quality of the experience ‘is that of an unsatisfied desire which is itself more desirable than any other satisfaction.’ This is why he calls it Joy: because the word longing fails to convey the desirability of the feeling itself.”

So, for what it’s worth, that’s how I’m feeling this morning. I’m not sure if it’s as desirable as Lewis describes, but it is certainly different than an ordinary day.

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