Composed online Aug. 10, 1995. Updated
slightly for links and matching the
background color from the original WELL
announcement of that day, Sept. 13 1998.

The WELL posts for Jerry

Hundreds of us post for you, Jerry, in the gd conferences here.

Just a few of the voices ...

gd.1155: What are you thankful for?

gd.1155.101: pilgrim (flanagan)  Thu 10 Aug 95 17:12

 i'm thankful for the lessons that came along with the experience and being
 able to have something so solid to pass on to my kids in the way i bring
 them up -  thanks jerry -    they're playing "Not For Kids Only" at my
 little one's preschool today -  thanks for that-  thanks for the PBS special
 Hallowwen '80 that was on last night to soothe us so well -
 i was burning a candle for ya, garcia, in a heavy dense green seaglass
 holder, and the glass just cracked with a melodious  "ping", like a mandolin
 plucked -  i long to hear you -  o shenandoah, away, you rolling river -
 thanks jerry

gd.1621: Status report 92

gd.1621.513: pilgrim (flanagan)  Sat 12 Aug 95 12:32

 flan gets in her bus with isaac and heads to sf
 flan's famous for breaking down on 101 in king city
 flan *will* get by*
 flan's 69 vw bus *will* survive

gd.1593: Media mentions of the Grateful Dead

gd.1593.564: McGannahan Skjellyfetti (jstraw)  Thu 10 Aug 95 18:56

 The following appeared in this morning's Topeka Capital-Journal. It was my
 honor to write it.
     I was in the photo lab when someone  came back with the news that  Jerry
 Garcia's death had just flashed over the news wire. My first thought, was
 that he did himself in with drugs, a reaction I now regret. It's a sad irony
 that after years of struggling unsuccessfully with his substance abuse,
 Jerry finally checked himself in for treatment only to succumb to heart
 failure. For fans of the Grateful Dead, a tragedy we came to increasingly
 fear had transpired. I'm still numb.
    I never decided to become a Deadhead. It sort of crept up on me.
     I saw my first Grateful Dead concert in 1981. And by Deadhead standards,
 I really haven't seen that many shows - 44 in all. The Dead just don't visit
 the Midwest often, and travel is expensive and time-consuming.
     Somewhere around 1987, I really became involved with Deadhead culture.
 Dead shows were a place where there were always people trying to express
 community. That's when I started collecting and trading tapes of live
 Grateful Dead concerts.
     You'll hear many people refer to Garcia as the "leader" of the Grateful
 Dead. The Dead as an artistic collaboration was always balanced on a razors
 edge between democracy, and anarchy. The only leader was the music.
     Garcia was, however the linchpin, and the melodic centerpiece of the
 band. The Dead's stock-in-trade was its improvisational ensemble playing -
 that's the journey. The destination was when Garcia's guitar playing took
 flight. At its best, his guitar playing was transcendent, a song that could
 not be sung with words.
     Being the focus of the band made Garcia a reluctant prophet. In the eyes
 of many devoted Deadheads, he was almost a spiritual leader. I'm afraid that
 this was a great, unwelcome weight on him, and one source of the personal
 pain that lead him to anesthetize himself with drugs.
     I also worry greatly for the future fortunes of those for whom being a
 Deadhead was not merely an aspect of their lives, but life itself.
     Though no prophet, Garcia did sing brilliant, illuminated words. But he
 didn't write them, Robert Hunter did. It's a pity that so many were unable
 to separate the message from the messenger.
     I'm not diminishing Garcia. His soul was the animating force that
 breathed life into those words. Garcia was a truly great musical artist. I
 personally am quite grateful to have benefited from his life and art.
     He filled my heads with the rich allegorical words of Hunter, and often,
 a bit of a lyric would come to mind and lend perspective to a moment or
 emotion when nothing else would. Through the musical window that he and the
 Grateful Dead opened for me, I learned of the work of Charles Ives, Hoagy
 Carmichael, Miles Davis, the Reverend Gary Davis, and many others.
     The most important thing I've gained through my appreciation of Garcia
 as a musician, and the way that the Grateful Dead approach their craft, is
 something that I've been able to apply directly to my own life.
     Garcia was a risk-taker. From Garcia and the Dead, I learned creative
 endeavor fulfills me when I sharpen my skills and open myself to meet the
 moment, rather than rehearse a preconception of how the moment should
 unfold. I hope I can always hold on to this knowledge and apply it's lesson.
 I wont get another chance to have Garcia remind me how it works.
 Be at peace Jerry, and thank you.

Older posting, reposted to the web now by request:


deadlit.96.1: A. Mandala (mandala)  Mon 24 Dec 90 18:32

 A Parable for Deadhead Children of All Ages
 by A. Mandala  
 c. 1990 All rights reserved.
 Once upon a space of time, 
 On a bright ball spinning free, 
 There lived a race of humankind, 
 Not unlike you and me. 
 But these folk were having a terrible time 
 Finding the way to be free, 
 And the notes that they sang in the cosmic chord 
 Curdled the heavenly harmony.
 They'd built bombs to kill everybody several times over, 
 But they couldn't make sure every body could eat; 
 They'd poisoned the air, their own food, land and water, 
 They'd rarely cooperate, but they'd always compete. 
 Their world had become a planet divided 
 By hard hearts, closed minds and hate, 
 And since they'd never learned to blend together in love,
 Self-destruction shadowed their fate.
 But in the realm of the Wizard Garcia,
 And his bands of merry fools,
 They were striving to find some gentler ways
 By stretching all those rules
 That were stopping joy and kindness
 From glowing from within,
 And blocking hearts from beating
 With the pulsing life rhythm.
 You see, the sickness that afflicted that world
 Was not that hard to fix,
 It came from keeping things locked up
 And protecting them with sticks,
 Or knives, or guns, (or words) or bombs,
 Or other means to scare,
 'Til all the time 'twas meant for play
 Got trapped inside of fear.
 And it became easier to keep others away
 Than to learn to let them near,
 And it became easier to fret about a future of days
 Than enjoy the one that was here.
 Their minds had locked out everything,
 But having and getting more.
 They were so afraid to lose what they had,
 They were scared to go out their own door.
 But in the realm of the Wizard Garcia,
 At the edge of this Land of Afraid,
 They were dedicated to going further than this,
 To dance in, not watch, life's parade.
 For they'd found a musical magic
 Where the boundaries could stretch everywhere,
 And they all could let go together,
 And not fear that others were near.
 They followed that magic right out of their cages,
 And escaped from the dungeon of feeling alone,
 Their spirits would shimmer (and heal) and mingle;
 Fear could no longer freeze them like stone.
 Their minds would all meld and spark with connection,
 Their bodies would ripple together like waves,
 Their souls merged in oneness; they stopped dreading dying;
 They could see, from those peaks, they might dance beyond graves.
 In their bliss they knew life is transcendent,
 It's immenser than just you or we,
 And whenever we try to box it or lock it,
 We just jail ourselves with no key.
 They celebrated the joys of coming together,
 In a free-zone where each one could be
 Wherever their fantasies happened to take them
 And still blend with the whole harmony.
 Now sadly, most who most needed their magic
 Only saw them as weirdoes and freaks,
 And made fun of their smiles and their twinkling eyeballs,
 And then returned to that world that was bleak.
 But the realm of the Wizard Garcia
 Is always near for those who will dare
 To soar o'er the limits and bondage of boundaries,
 To find the freedom that rings beyond fear.

8/10/95 - Information about Jerry's passing | Tributes | About The WELL's Grateful Dead Conferences