The Folk Singer

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

Billy and Sarah were engaged to be married. But, then Billy decides to leaves Sarah to follow his dreams. And then sorrow strikes. Based on the song, "The Folk Singer" by Tommy Roe. Even though the
song came out in 1965, the story takes place in the 70's

Submitted: April 01, 2018

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Submitted: April 01, 2018



The Folk Singer
By Brian Clements
Billy and Sarah Jane both lived in the mountains of Colorado.  They  grew up together and went to school with each other since kindergarten.
Billy loved music.  He learned to play the guitar when he was 7 year old. 
Billy:  “Sarah, Isn’t this cool?  My grandpa gave this to me.”
Sarah responds, “Looks neat.  What kind of songs are you going to learn?  Love songs?
“Are you kidding?  Yuck.  I‘m going to make a kazillion dollars playing all sorts of songs.”
When Billy got older, he loved to write and sing songs.  Billy played the songs for Sarah and she just ate it up. What kind of songs, you might say?  All sorts of songs, but especially folk songs and love songs. When Billy sang he would make the mountains ring.
He loved to sing all types of folk songs from 1960’s and 70’s.  His songs and especially those sung by other singers and songwriters. A couple of songs he would sing were, “I got a Name,” Time in a Bottle,” “Both Sides Now,” “Happy Together.”
When Billy and Sarah were seniors in high school, Billy asked Sarah to marry him.  Of course she said yes, but time will change them.
Well, they graduated high school and Billy started to perform at live concerts in the Colorado Springs area.  He and a couple of his friends started a folk group called,”Shiney Nickel.”  They became very popular in Colorado.  Eventually, they hired a manager to handle their affairs and tours.  After a year, it became apparent that Billy was the star of the show and, at the urging of his manager, he left the group to sing on his own.
Billy became a big hit during the mid ‘70’s.  He had 3 big singles in 1975 alone. 
After his 1975 tour, Billy decided to take a short break to see his family in Colorado.  While there, he stopped to see Sarah who was going to the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs to become a nurse She waited for a couple of years for Billy hoping he would come back to her.
They talked a few times while he was in town and their talks went well and he also would sing to her while he was there.  But something was different.  Billy just wasn’t the same. Before he went back on tour, Sarah wanted to confront him.
Well, the meeting did not go well, Sarah also wanted to go with him on tour.
“You can’t go, Sarah.”
Sarah asked him, “ Why can’t I go?”
Billy responded, “I have to keep an image up.  You’re just not pretty enough.  You’re really just too plain to be around me.  I’m sorry.  But, that is the way it has to be.
Sarah was in tears.  She did not understand why her childhood friend was treating her this way. 
As Billy left, she tells him,  “Billy, I’ll wait for you.”
Billy didn’t turn around when he left.  But he had a slight tear in his eyes but continued to walk.
Billy went back on tour a couple of weeks later.  Sold out concerts.  All of the friends that he wanted.  And the women.  Billy felt like that was all he needed.
Well, Billy had 30 shows in two months during his 1976 tour.  Average of one concert every 2 days.  Back then that was average for shows, sometimes more. 
Billy still had about two weeks left in his tour. 
But, after a great concert at the City Auditorium  in Panama City, Florida, Billy?’s voice was a little sore and scratchy.He ?decided to get some rest and had everybody leave his room.  Even the beautiful women that seem to be around him all the time had to leave the room. 
The next morning, Billy could not speak at all.  So, he had his manager call an Ear, Nose and Throat Doctor.  The news wasn’t good. 
After Dr. Lee examined Billy and his throat, he invites him into his office.
Dr. Lee asked him, “How long would you like to continue singing, Billy?”
Billy answers, “As long as I can.  I still have two weeks on my tour.”
“I’m afraid that is out of the question, Billy.  Your voice is shot.  Unless you stop singing immediately, you won’t even be able to talk at all.”
“What will I do?  This is my life!”
“I understand.  But, I wish had better news to tell you.  I can suggest a good throat doctor in Atlanta or Denver, but I’m afraid that they will have the same prognosis. 
Now Billy didn’t know what to do.  No singing voice. No friends.  They seem to have disappeared.  Seems like they just wanted to be him for all of the money and glory.  And now that it is gone. They’re all gone. Even his manager left him.  Not much loyalty when you’re down.
After much prayer, Billy decided to go back to Manitou Springs.  Maybe resting his voice and being around friends and the mountain air will help.  Maybe even see Sarah Jane, that is if she will see him. 
Billy was home for a couple of weeks when he finally caught up with Sarah at the grocery story.  His voice was still hoarse.  Billy invited her for coffee and they talked.
Sarah starts talking, “I heard what happened to you.  I’m so sorry.  I cried when I heard about it.  I think a lot of your fans cried too.
Billy says, “Thanks.  My voice is so bad right now that it hurts just talking to you.  This is the revenge you got when we last talked.”
“Don’t say that Billy. I only wanted the best for you.  You went out and followed your dream.  I missed you so much these last couple of years.”
“I don’t know what to do.  All my friends are gone.  My voice is gone.  I’m alone.”
“No, Billy.  You aren’t alone.  You still have me.”
Billy looked at Sarah, “I can’t believe you still want to be with me after the way I treated you last year. How can I make it up to you?”
“Come home. Play your music.”
“But, I can’t sing.”
“But, you can still play the guitar, right?”
Later that day, Billy and Sarah Jane went to Garden of the Gods park and walked and talked until the park closed.  The talked about their future and Sarah’s studies and what Billy should do.
Billy and Sarah married a year later.  He eventually became a police officer with the Manitou Springs Police Department and was there for 20 years.  Sarah became a nurse with Memorial Hospital in nearby Colorado Springs.  They also had 3 children together.
As for his music and guitar playing, Billy got back into that.  His voice came back.  Took it about a year. But he never went back on tour nor made any made records.  The only person he decided to sing to now was his Sarah Jane.  He believes that her love and support are the only reasons for his voice to come back.
“And once again the mountains ring to The Folk Singer.”

© Copyright 2018 Brian Lee Clements. All rights reserved.

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