The first few lines of this came to me while sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic on the Dulles Toll Road.  “Getting nowhere fast is what it’s all about.”


© 2019 Steven E. Cutts

recorded and mixed in the fall of 2019 by Jim Robeson


Steve, guitar and vocal

Ron Goad, drums

Zan McLeod, mandolin

Jim Robeson, bass

Fred Travers, dobro


A river of red wending to the west;

From the top of each rise, you can see it best.

When evening comes, the river runs slow                

Shifting with the rhythm of the stop and go.


Aiming toward the sunset     like it wants to be consumed,

It’s a special tint of red -- not crimson, not maroon  

But a reimagination of a thousand points of light

Tracing out the channel as the day turns into night.


People in the stream, they’re heading home, home, home,     

Bound for where they started from many hours ago.

They’ll get there when they get there at the pace they’ve come to know.

There’re rivers of red everywhere they go.


This river runs full, full of riders on the tide

Jockeying for progress across four lanes wide.

Some are squeezing in; some are dropping out;

Getting nowhere fast is what it’s all about.


They try to stay patient, but they’ve got to use their wits;

Tonight at least someone is sure to take a hit.   

Red used to send a warning to those who came behind;      

Now the red glow pulls all who follow on down the line.  


People in the stream . . .


River of red.  This river runs slow

Shifting to the rhythm of the stop     and go.