In the morning, we visited Graceland. I’ve never been a huge Elvis fan but it was fascinating nevertheless. What struck me was his charisma and charm not only in his Hollywood movies but in his home movies. What a playful force of nature. Not sure why I never noticed it before but this was the first time I saw the soul behind the icon. It was the first time I saw the playful boyish grin that won hearts the world over. His house was decorated for Christmas with his original decorations. It’s strange place…a mixture of homeyness, hoopla, museum, and shrine.
In stark contrast to the commercialization and glitz of Elvis, we walked in the rain along the concrete shore where the Wolf River and Mississippi rivers merge. It was here where Jeff Buckely, an artist less famous although no less talented, drew his last breaths before being swallowed by the river’s current. It’s a spot Brent had been wanting to visit for years. I lingered back so Brent could walk ahead of me to spend time in his own thoughts. Brent introduced me to Jeff Buckley. In our 13 years together, his hauntingly beautiful voice has been a part of many our memories. If you have never listened to Jeff Buckley’s cover of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah you must. It’s an amazing song (It was a sad day when I heard such a beautiful song had been forever attached to an ogre.) on it’s own but no one sings it like Jeff Buckley.
We ended our day in Memphis with a warm drink at the Peabody Hotel where everyday at 11 am and 5:o0 pm the famous Peabody ducks, lead by the “duck master”, waddle down a red carpet like celebrities as they have been since 1933.