Denver Morning

I slept in. Till 9. I think the weirdness tires us out. I was thinking of moments in life that are just slow and beautiful in their strange way.

In my 20s I lived in a “colorful” neighborhood in Denver for a while — Capital Hill. It was a great place to live, and if I were ever to live in Denver again, I’d go back (never going back again). During that time all my creative work had to be done on weekends because I had an 8 to 5 job. One Sunday morning I got up (earlier than 9 because you do not waste weekends when you’re working) and realized I was out of water color paper. At the time I was painting with gouache and watercolor. I had the prospect of a show coming up in a couple months.

At 11, an hour before anything opened, I put my wallet in my jeans jacket and headed up my street — I lived on 12th and Marion — two blocks to Colfax Ave, one of America’s most historic streets and most colorful. I turned left. My destination, Meininger’s, an art supply store, was more than a mile away, beyond downtown a little bit.

This crazy, busy street was almost deserted. The only people anywhere were hookers and partiers straggling home from whatever wild night Saturday had been for them.

The parking lots were empty. The stores closed and shuttered. One or two proprietors were sweeping in front of their cafes preparing for noon. It was solemn, spacious, sweet. If it had a color it would be pale blue and gray. At the end of the street the distant Rocky Mountains reminded me of the transience of this moment. I slowed down. I had plenty of time to get there.

Colfax, 2019 on a Sunday afternoon

19 thoughts on “Denver Morning

  1. Oh dear. Great minds really do think alike and after all we are two great minds. I looked at your entry just after posing mine. The song was going through my head since I saw the title of the blog, it is it really a geat song, makes you relax.

  2. Your post takes me back to when those moments were few and far between, and so greatly appreciated when they happened.

      • I was thinking that all the signage has probably changed and I was wondering if it was more or less intrusive signage.

        • There is an organization in Denver called, “Save the Signs” which I think is very cool. They have put some in a museum. Some of the best buildings from the “old” days have been (regrettably) torn down during a massive urban renewal (destruction) project in the 80s, but overall the ambience is the same. The same people today — young — are drawn to the street, but they are different from me and the generation I belonged to, more drawn to glitz and fame. They’ve dragged Jack Kerouac et al from the dusty gutters of history and made them a very prominent part of the street. They were there briefly, but never the real heroes of Denver or Colfax Ave. It’s ok. As Paul Simon wrote, “Every generation throws a hero up the pop charts.” I was just glad the street was still the street.

          One of the cameras on a stop light actually captured a picture of me driving my VW back in the day. I love that. A random immortalization of my little shadow.

  3. So funny to see the Lionel Richie song here that I’ve been humming all morning Martha (and named my post after). You’re right about it chiming through the ether! πŸ’œπŸŽΆ

  4. Easygoing and Sunday mornings go together. Lovely memory of when weirdness wasn’t tiring you out. No need for hurrying either. Great song choice too πŸ™‚ I’m already feeling more relaxed.

  5. time is really an abstract construct that we rarely take the time to wonder about. it’s so easy to get caught up in a rush and the older i’ve gotten, the more i love to pace myself and enjoy the moments.

  6. This looks a lot like streets I recall from my own childhood — and the mountains definitely enhance the scene. All we had in Saskatoon was the Bessborough Hotel, but it was glorious. πŸ™‚

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