It’s the holiday season, a time for good will toward men, so let’s not laugh at the notion that the city of York, Pa., actually had its own poet laureate.
No, let us instead debate whether the poet laureate of York, Pa., 86-year-old Gerry Meisenhelder, chose the right Bob Dylan song to be the soundtrack for his passing, which took place on the day after Christmas at York Hospital after a battle with leukemia.
According to an article in the York Daily Record, Mr. Meisenhelder, as he lay dying, dictated one last poem to his grandson — as Dylan’s “Knocking on Heaven’s Door” played in the background.
Sorry. I feel sorry that York, Pa.’s poet laureate has moved on to the Great Literary Salon in the Sky. But his choice of Dylan songs was rather trite.
How about these titles? “Are You Ready?” “Dead Man, Dead Man.” “Death Is Not the End.” “Dirge.” “Desolation Row.” “Going, Going, Gone.” “In My Time of Dyin’.” “See That My Grave is Kept Clean.”
I could go on, but I won’t, except to say that my choice would be “I Shall Be Released.” To wit:
I see my light come shining
From the west unto the east.
Any day now, any day now,
I shall be released.
Now that would be a lovely Dylan song to have echoing in my ears as I head to the highlands, as I rage against the dying of the light, as I travel beyond the horizon, when it comes time to say my restless farewell.