Roxi Linn—the queen of rock n’ roll, the loud lady, the mother of metal, the delinquent diva, the Valkyrie vixen who wielded her voice like the hammer of the gods, the larger-than-life, all-killer-no-filler female supreme—was in love with Donkey.
He—a man who only made decisions but offered no judgment, the long-necked, long-faced, wide-eyed, whiskey-soaked wild man who’d never met a concert he couldn’t conquer, the somewhat lunk-headed, thick shouldered beast of burden—was entirely oblivious, as most men are in these situations.
The crew rolled its collective eyes as she circled the areas where he worked. He obliged her whim whenever she demanded he fix a light bulb in her dressing room. He performed these tasks with his customary gruffness, then went about whatever else needed to be done.
Her music provoked an indescribable feeling in some people, an effect from her gut-wrenching, soul-baring lyrics of lost love and deception. Donkey, too, had a presence. He was a first-rate raconteur of tragicomic rock n’ roll excess and a mellifluous dispenser of sage wisdom.
In the middle of her “Broken Promises” tour, she broke down. “I want Donkey!!” she inconsolably screamed over and over again.
After he entered the dressing room, Roxi’s screams subsided. The crew gathered around, pressing their ears against the door, hoping for some tidbit of juicy gossip. They began to worry when, several hours later, no one emerged from the room. A few more hours passed. The crew burst through the door. The room was empty. The only remaining trace was a black leather glove Roxi wore during her performances.
The crew search for Donkey and Roxi, until no other option remained but to cancel the concert. A few days more rendered no conclusion. With some reluctance from the record label, the tour was canceled. Some months later, two bodies were found in the Grand Canyon. Most assumed the bodies were Roxi and Donkey. Still, the mystery endured.
Years later, after all the commotion about the mysterious disappearance died down, a family that lived in Albuquerque drove to Santa Fe to attend services at a small church. The wife had urged the husband to go, not for the religion, not for the sake of his eternal soul, but for the choir and the sermon. Everyone, she said, had been talking about it.
They took their seats in the pew. An old-fashioned revival began. The husband thought he recognized the woman who led the choir. There was something in her voice that sparked a feeling he couldn’t quite process. He used the word extemporaneously used the word “uplifting” when he described the performance to his co-workers the next morning.
When the preacher spoke, a similar feeling emerged. But no, he’d never seen that man before. That much he knew. Still, he felt obliged to sit with rapt attention to whatever the man said.