She stayed up all night listening to old albums. A lamp glowed in the living room. Her cat lay asleep on her lap. And, she sang along to Cat Stevens, Harry Chapin, James Taylor, old Carol King songs off Tapestry. The refrigerator hummed along.

This was the town she grew up in. A small village outside of Cleveland in Cuyahoga, County. In her teen years she would take the train into the city to seek out records in resale shops. Music always played in her head. Sometimes, in public folks would turn towards her as she closed her eyes and sang out in airy whispers. She’d smile, then go back to singing in a softer tone.

Her life was simple. College, marriage, children, all eluded this woman. Townies would say she wasn’t smart enough, or, pretty enough to do anything with her life. And, she believed them, kept to herself, stayed home on Saturday nights, never had a date. But, she wasn’t lonely. She had her records to keep her company.

The parents worried about her. They  couldn’t let their little girl out into the world. Mom and dad would sit and watch Johnny Carson at night when they thought she was asleep. And, she was asleep; dreaming of Tea For The Tillerman. She even sang in her sleep. Their worry was justified. They knew that one day she would be on her own, alone.

So, she stayed up all night listening to music and dreaming. Dreaming of stories. Pictures in her head, images that artists created. This was her life. And, she was happy.

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