Joe Williams - Heaven, Hell And Magical Soup
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Poems and the stories they tell are such a rich way to reach the heart of things. Such are the magical stories of Joe Williams&rsquo, book, Heaven, Hell and Magical Soup.Joe is a singer, songwriter, performer, house builder, and holder of sacred ceremony. I have had the pleasure of knowing him since he played and sang at the memorial service of a friend&rsquo,s brother. , I got even better acquainted when he did some repairs and renovations to my home. , We started with a very small list to which I kept adding until he had worked for me for what seems like the whole summer. I am sharing this because Joe made even renovation easy. And that is a sense that comes flowing out of the stories and poems in this collection. Not that some of the stories don&rsquo,t have a bite to them, a little squirm because he shows the side of ourselves that we like to pretend isn&rsquo,t there.His characters are Ragmen. The Ragman is a character Joe performs from which he extracts the dark underbelly of society. Ragman tells of that place we prefer not acknowledge. The old woman pushing a shopping cart of all her belongings, the dirty looking fellow holding up the sign looking for work, or food, or gas for his car, the one-legged war veteran with his cap out on the sidewalk collecting change that might be enough to buy a bottle of cheap alcohol and let him forget the horrors for a night.Not that all the Ragmen are desolate. Some are Joyous, or Christ-like. In fact, on a certain night of the year, there are seven who gather to sing and tell their poems and stories. You may encounter them sometimes in a bar nearby. You have heard the Angry Old Man give forth on what is wrong with the world. He is often joined by Crazy Old Man who is offering a wake-up call. Or Joyous who gets called down by Petty, who finds nothing to be joyous about. , The Ragwoman who used to be a girl with stars in her eyes, a mother, or lover. You may have shared a night wi