Posted on 03.08.2021

Seasons - Soapbox Jr.

As I write this, the “Tennessee Midlands,” as dad used to call them appear to be heading full speed into spring as tree frogs are singing, daffodils are starting to bloom, many of the trees are just beginning to bud.

But, as a popular meme that has been circulating for a while presents, Tennessee actually has TWELVE seasons:


Fool’s Spring

Second Winter

Spring of Deception < -- You are here

Third Winter

The Pollening

Actual Spring


Hell’s Front Porch

False Fall

Second Summer

Actual Fall


While it’s supposed to be humorous, it’s not far off base. Right now, we’re having temperatures close to 70º, but one of the biggest snow and ice storms we’ve had was in March just a few years ago, and while rare, Middle TN has gotten snow in April, so it’s not really very far off base.


One winter, my elementary school in Mt. Juliet – in rural Wilson County - was out for an entire month for snow, this was around the time that scientists were warning about a new Ice Age. Well, we weren’t out for a solid month, we were out two weeks and then went back for half a day, and then it started snowing again, so we were sent home early, and basically out for another two weeks.

That was extreme and quite out of the ordinary for Middle TN.

Just a few years later in 1980, we had one of the warmest summers on record. It was in the 100s for several days if not weeks. It was so warm that when we went to the local swimming pool in Lebanon – also Wilson County – the water wasn’t even refreshing, and it was almost like stepping from a steam room or sauna into a hot bath.

We’ve had extreme Springs in Tennessee, like we did in 2010 when we had historic flooding which affected parts of downtown Nashville, many areas near rivers and even flooded the Grand Ole Opry House and the nearby mall.

And as beautiful as a Tennessee Fall can be with the brilliant orange, red and yellow foliage, there have been times when drought conditions have robbed Autumn of its full glory, so every season can have its extremes.

But extreme seasons don’t just mean weather. In fact, speaking of seasons, it has been 8 months now since dad “changed addresses,” and that season of grief isn’t going to go away anytime soon, although, much like the list above, there will no doubt be a mixture of them which can change several times. From “Hanging in there,” to “Feeling Strong,” to “Barely getting by.”

I heard something extremely profound in of all places, a Marvel Comics TV show called WandaVision, while not getting too deep into the complicated plot, the show is based around how one character deals with grief, however, she’s extremely powerful, and appears to have resurrected her love, an android called Vision, along with someone who may or may not be her brother in a small town which echoes and imitates decades of TV sitcoms.

In one episode, while Wanda – the main character - is talking about the grief she felt over her brother’s death, Vision gives an astonishingly deep response for someone made of wires and circuits, “What is grief, if not love persevering?”

Indeed, it is.

Grief is love that still exists and is enduring when a loved one is no longer there to receive it.

Not much can be more extreme than that pain.

It’s watching the Tennessee Vols decisively win a football game in a disappointing year, and as you were just about to call your dad to ask him if he saw the end of the game, then you remember that there is no one to call.

It’s memories of riding horses with him when you were younger, and you wish you had done more in recent years.

It’s remembering holidays, birthdays and it’s the bittersweet thoughts while going through unfinished writings and songs, marveling at the talent that he had for writing, but knowing that he would never finish them.

So, the Seasons of Grief can probably be displayed in a similar fashion to the 12 Tennessee Seasons:




Trying to be Strong

Muddling Through

Fighting Tears

Dealing with the Pain

Doing the Best We Can

Falling Apart

On the Mend

Picking Up the Pieces


However, there is no particular order to these and “You are here” can appear at any point on the list at any given time, often during the same day.

But seasons change, and we will learn how to deal with the love that we will always carry.

As Vision observed, “What is grief, but love persevering?”

And persevere we shall.

What do you think?

Pray for our troops, our police, the peace of Jerusalem and for our nation.

God Bless America


—  Charlie Daniels, Jr.



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Check out "Geechi Geechi Ya Ya Blues" from Beau Weevils - 'Songs in the Key of E'




Every year for about the past 20 or so, I've looked forward to the first Wednesday of June. Not so much for FanFair (or whatever they call it these days) but to head to Mt Juliet and Charlie Daniels Park to see acquaintances I've met over the years, Liska from Oregon, Bruce from Ohio, Hokie from Virginia, and quite a few more. We'd eat breakfast that morning together at Cracker Barrel in Mt Juliet and later, head to the park. I'd holler at Chris as he was setting up his guitar and he's usually ask where my daughters were (sometimes they went. sometimes not but they loved Chris). Usually I'd say say hi to Bruce, Shannon, Charlie H and Pat. Talked with Taz a few times and got to meet Tommy Craine once when he was there. Like your Dad wrote in a song once, "Time went flying by in the blink of an eye but blowing hot like the wild desert wind". I remember we lost Taz and Tommy about the same time and I knew your Dad had to be devastated on the loss of such good friends and fellow road warriors. Told him that year that we offered prayers to the band and him. I was 15 years old in 1974 when I first heard Cabillo Diablo off of the "Fire on the Mountain" 8-track and I was hooked for life. I followed Charlie and the band's career through thick and thin and always bought a new album, an 8-track, a cassette, a CD or whatever was popular at the time. Most of them have now been signed by Charlie. As I was watching the interviews last July of some of his friends as they paid their respects, I think the one that stuck out at me the most was, and I believe it was Trace Adkins that said it, 'Its a different world now without Charlie Daniels in it". Truer words were never spoken ......... God Bless you Junior and Miss Hazel, prayers are always with you. Mark in Shelbyville
Posted by Mark
Amen, Amen & Amen Charlie Jr, we shall persevere because Jesus is our King and our shelter from storms. We are blessed to have all the seasons that we do, including the seasons of grief that you listed. You are so correct sir in how quickly these season can change, even numerous times in the same day. Continued prayers for you and your mother in these difficult times......God Bless Plowboy
Posted by Plowboy
The best description that I have ever read or heard for grief. Thank you for sharing.
Posted by Anthony