Old Nick

Old Nick

Some say Nick committed suicide

in the small hours of the morning

back in November ‘74

others say it was surely an accident

that

Nick wouldn’t ever have made that conscious choice

that

it wasn’t in his character he was too gentle

too shy, too nice, too thoughtful, too caring

he had too much love in him

that

he was superman, he was God, he was a legend

he was perfect, too handsome to die that way

that

although he was an emotionally crippled

depressed young man, he was above doing such a thing

 

—Yeah well

he’s now too dead to ever grow old

and still too young in photographs to lose his boyish good looks

and romantics love a piece of youth and tragedy

it’s nothing to look up to or envy

but it gets under your skin, doesn’t it?

 

Whatever happened

he OD’d and was found dead next day

twenty-six years old and not as well known as he is today

Nick Drake, musician, and poet

isn’t it something—

posthumous fame and hordes of fawning admirers

coming and going and playing guitar

sat next to the family gravestone

singing his songs like lullabies

and talking to that stone like a long-lost friend

they never met

 

They leave flowers, token gifts, poems

they say how deeply his music touched them

play Northern Sky at their weddings

talk of him like some angelic being

ever-present, watching on, listening in

and they dress like him

and they get stoned like him

and they drink like him

and they want to be him

and they want to know him

and they want to get inside and look out through his eyes

if only they could but

 

—Nick

I’m not sure he knew even himself

 

some say it was suicide in ‘74

some say accident

I don’t know

I guess only Old Nick can answer that.