Friday, April 30, 2010
Thanks to Steven at No Excuses No Explanation for this cutie!
I've been off from work for the past couple of days, and was just swinging by my computer to rip some music. I will see you all Monday. Enjoy the Derby tomorrow!
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Apart from a few friends and many routines, the problematic pursuit of literature constituted the whole of his life; like every writer, he measured other men's virtues by what they had accomplished, yet asked that other men measure him by what he planned someday to do.
~Jorge Luis Borges, "The Secret Miracle"
Jahmah said to the Holy Prophet, "O Messenger of Allah, I desire to go on a military expedition and I have come to consult you." He asked him if he had a mother, and when he replied that he had, he said, "Stay with her because Paradise lies beneath her feet."
~An-Nasai, Muslim scholar (ca. 829-915)
A mother is a school, Empower her, and you empower a great nation.
~Hafez Ibrahim, Egyptian poet (1872-1932)
There it is a definite social relation between men, that assumes, in their eyes, the fantastic form of a relation between things.
~Karl Marx, Das Kapital
Monday, April 26, 2010
I know Earth Day was last week, but I haven't been able to find this article online until today. I absolutely love the house pictured above and wish I could live in such a place. Maybe not the town of Globe, but an old farmhouse set out in the woods.
Via The Lexington Herald-Leader:
A town of global proportions
By Amy Wilson
GLOBE — It's only fitting that a few days before the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, Globians, er, Globites, that is, Globerians, excuse me, the people of Globe were up early trying to get the slow traffic to move along.
The slow traffic was trying to make sure it was in the right place, but it wasn't that hard. There's a 3-mile stretch of U.S. 60 between Olive Hill and Morehead that kind of ceremoniously announces itself with the twin establishments of the Globe Funeral Chapel and Globe Hardwood, and then rides up to the Globe Diner, now closed, and ends with a black-and-silver funeral home sign tacked onto a red and black barn, bidding you a fond adieu.
In the between, you've wandered over a few creeks, past an amazing field of mustard flower, an antique district of two shops, a mass of redbud in full flower, a row of houses built right after World War II, a busy sawmill, a pawn shop, a tire shop, a fast-growing crop of campaign signs and one strangely incongruent health food store that caters to the kids at Morehead State a few minutes thataway.
A road off the main thoroughfare lands you square in the country, replete with lazy dogs and skedaddling deer and last year's scarecrows in fallow fields.
Buck Rayburn, co-owner of Globe Hardwood, says the air here is clean, the people are good, the elementary school is first-rate and, really, nobody knows more about Globe than 88-year-old Claude "Hawkeye" Erwin who, except for doing his considerable duty aboard a Navy ship during World War II, has spent his life on this stretch of earth.
Hawkeye Erwin isn't so sure he can let the strangers in the front door, so he agrees to meet at Buck's in, oh, 90 seconds. He's as good as his word and starts right in on how he got his nickname when he was 10 and was just about the best shot around, or maybe it was because of that one night at the gas station pool hall when they were playing 61. Either way, it was a name he earned and it stuck, especially when he worked a 20mm gun off the coast of Italy during the war.
This is kind of how Hawkeye's stories go, and you have to keep up.
Hawkeye's grandfather came to Globe around 1892, and he owned about 160 acres, "from the bridge to the tire place." He's the guy who got U.S. 60 to come through, bringing all this commerce to what was just farm land.
Hawkeye remembers, like it was yesterday, "how they built 60 with T-model trucks."
He remembers the abundance of bass, redeye and sunfish in those creeks that sometimes got to raging so they'd flood. He used to be able to go down there and do some fishing when the farm was too wet to work. Now, the creeks are not so gracious looking and not so generous with the fish.
The earth wasn't always kind back then, either. Granddaddy died of typhoid fever at the age of 54, leaving every one of his children a slice of the farm.
Hawkeye remembers how a lot of families were wiped out in 1937 when a big flood took out a bridge in Olive Hill and houses just got swept away.
But that's not giving Globe its due.
Hawkeye remembers, too, how he "walked to the movies in Olive Hill. I knew lots of shortcuts." He sold Grit newspapers — which contained Zane Grey stories — for a nickel. He got to pocket a good 2 cents of that, which was real money back then. He and his friends were regular entrepreneurs. He was only 10 when they used to stay up nights, school nights even, until midnight hooting possums. "An old man would come by through once in a while and pay 40 cents a skin. I sold those hides and bought a shotgun and a .22."
"I ain't living anywhere else," he says. "This place has everything."
It especially had Olive, whom he married while he was on leave from the Navy. They bought a house for $3,400 sometime around 1950. It's the same house he now lives in alone, since Olive died a few years ago.
There was that time, he reminds, that Ern Patton came in and sawed all the timber down and saved the town.
Asked if that was hard, him losing his beautiful trees, he says, my goodness, no, there was two sawmills in town then. "People had jobs."
Hawkeye's own daddy worked for Patton for five years, and those were the years the family drove a Chrysler.
The town had clay that could be mined for the brickyards. That was the work Hawkeye did.
Truth was, Hawkeye's done everything. He's worked in timber, oil, real estate, brick-making and sales. He also has four bronze stars for combat heroism while his ship was protecting landings off Anzio, Salerno and Sicily in 1944.
Hawkeye does know everything about here except how Globe got its name.
Down at Rayburn Lumber, where they recycle every last bit of the tree they process down to the sawdust, Jennifer Owens takes to calling everybody 90 years and older on the phone to answer the Globe origin question. We got two "no ideas" before Mavis Kegley, 95, said there was a post office that had a Globe postmark back when she was little. We even tried to ask Nancy Masters, 94, a retired schoolteacher who never has forgotten anything, but she recently "had a big ol' disagreement with the phone company, and you can't exactly reach her by phone anymore," says Owens.
Wandering down to the health food store, Bob Atkins says his wife has an intuitive ability to size up a person and tell them what's wrong with them. Then she helps them with all she has to offer here.
The couple moved the store here from downtown Olive Hill at the beginning of 2010, and it's a mite early to tell how business is going at the new locale.
"Economy's been bad," says Atkins.
Have no fear. There's plenty of elderberry zinc, coltsfoot leaf, birch bark and dulse flakes left for the Globules to feast on when they're ready, after they've fought the traffic, smelled the clean air, recycled the trees, thanked Hawkeye for his service and finished their day, spanning the globe.
Friday, April 23, 2010
Via the Lexington Herald-Leader:
A gay student who said three classmates tried to kill her won't return to Jackson County High School this year, her mother said Thursday.
Dee Johnson said she is concerned her daughter, Cheyenne Williams, wouldn't be safe if she returned to finish her senior year.
Even if the girls accused of attacking Williams weren't back at school, some of their friends would be, Johnson said. Johnson said her daughter has enough credits to graduate.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
August by Mary Oliver
When the blackberries hang
swollen in the woods, in the brambles
nobody owns, I spend
all day among the high
my ripped arms, thinking
of nothing, cramming
the black honey of summer
into my mouth; all day my body
accepts what it is. In the dark
creeks that run by there is
this thick paw of my life darting among
the black bells, the leaves; there is
this happy tongue.
Corinne M. Schwab and Ashley Sams
Police have arrested three teenagers, including a juvenile, on charges of kidnapping and attempted murder after a Jackson County High School student told authorities that the girls kidnapped and tried to kill her.
Cheyenne Williams, 18, of McKee, signed a sworn criminal complaint Monday, saying she was abducted on Friday by Corinne M. Schwab, 18, of Sandgap; Ashley N. Sams, 18, of Annville; and a 17-year-old girl who was not identified because she is a juvenile.
Williams told police she was attacked as a result of her sexual orientation, state police Detective Joie Peters said.
Read more at the Lexington Herald-Leader
I don't know how many of you kept up with the NCAA March Madness last month (Fuck, Duke!) but just recently I received a link to an article about Butler University President Bobby Fong.
In 1994, he [Bobby Fong] resigned as dean of arts and humanities at Hope College when it refused to hire a professor because he was gay.
At the time he was also teaching at Berea College just 30 minutes south of here in Berea, KY, which is a private, at-one-time (and possibly still) very gay liberal arts college.
Posting something about Butler University also allows me to post a few pictures of the very yummy coach of the Butler Bulldogs (damn him for being a year younger than me) Brad Stevens:
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.
Can it be believed that democracy which has overthrown the feudal system and vanquished kings will retreat before tradesmen and capitalists?
~Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America
It is not good to announce every truth.
~Alexis de Tocqueville, Oeuvres (B), vol. 7, Nouvelle Correspondance
First a week early, and now a day early, and he's gone. Too much time spent fighting. Too much white noise from people who ultimately did not matter. Too much. Too much. We aren't disconnected but he's gone. I don't want to go home tonight. I don't want to see all the places where his stuff was and now isn't and all the places where his stuff still is. The pieces of his life that he didn't have room for, and that I will slowly over the weeks mail to him. The silence after his voice is gone, the constantly open door to his room which is now mine. The peace is almost louder than anything else.
Monday, April 19, 2010
It is good poetry, but I must admit, I'm bringing it back to the library unfinished. A lot of it is much too dark for where I am right now (see previous post involving Patty Loveless and Kathy Mattea videos), but I did want to present one of the poems here for you.
Doña María Greets Her Comadre Doña Luna at the Balcony Window
So you're staying up again, doña Luna, waiting
to guide my sons home from the bar.
Then let me help you push out the dark with this face
these hands have wrinkled, a face shaped
the way a restless woman shapes
the folds and furrows on the sheets. How do you
manage it, señora? How do you keep your fingers
from digging into those worries half-stitched
against eyelids? What stops you from throwing down
your cheeks like bowls of beans gone bad, waiting
for the spoon that never comes? What thoughts
swirling with you don't break you off and chisel you?
Someday I too will be bald as rock, having unspooled
that last thread from my head. There is no shame in that.
It's what makes us comadres, a pair of copper cazuelas,
idential molcajetes from the mother stone -
the stone that knows how to hold its breath; the stone
that watches and teaches how to watch; the stone
that keeps the earth in its proper place; the stone
that separates the oceans from the skies; the stone
that stops the floods and snuffs out fires;
that lid of stone, which seals our deaths.
And this old woman will have her peace when her tongue
shatters and all her complaints dissolve into ash.
But you are the unlucky one, aren't you, doña Luna?
Because you will open your eyes a thousand nights
after God has pressed His thumb over my heart
and that night will be the same as the nights before.
And you'll see how one thousand nights after that,
worriers and insomniacs still call on you, supplier
of the knitting needle, rocker of the cradle, guardian
of the blue mazorca, keeper of the restless flesh.
How everyone looks up to you as if you could solve
the riddles in our dreams, as if you had risen
solely to cut through the darkness of our sleep.
How many times we will expect you to tame bad dreams:
when the child awakens suddenly, with a glint of light
scaring his eye, you'll be asked to help him see within you
the harmless white in a dead hen's tongue,
the Lord's round ear, the hand that received his birth.
And this boy will become a man, and that man
might awaken one night to that familiar boyhood fear
and you will soothe him then too, showing him his bride,
her breast, her belly, the wheel that spins inside.
And this man will become an old man, having long since
learned to identify in you his tempered wisdom,
which he will always believe he achieved on his own,
which will trick him into climbing through that hole
and into the pit of the other side.
And another man will rise from the dust,
and another man will unhook his hands from his jaw
to let his voice fly home. And still
nothing puts you out of your sky, nothing -
not the girls who grow their hair beneath you, collecting
secrets like combs and letting in dusks like bedmates;
not the women who round off their faces beneath you,
taking your lines to their calves, your color to their heads;
not the old women who beneath you weave their own shrouds
night after night after night. And every night
is the same night. You were given no choice;
all this time you could have faced the other way
or maybe all this time you never looked our way
and kept us ignorant, because it never mattered that we named
the back of your head "el farol de enamorados,"
expecting you to open a mouth and bring out that passion
called tongue; to lift up the nose like a skirt -
such sweet smells; to expand the cups of the hands,
the pillows of the thighs; to part every cleavage and limb
and expose the hidden moistures caught between dark
and light. How much does it matter if you ever tried
to show us different, when we'll always believe
it is you sending lust through our veins? You're to blame
though when we jerk our heads like owls, trapped in the woods
by the noises of night, you give us your quilt
and say nothing. When we show you the sores on our feet,
those tears on our skins like old clothes,
you give us stitches and expect nothing.
So what comes next? Do we lift our empty hands and mouths
in your direction, and will you, kind señora, kind
mother, take nothing in exchange for your bread?
Poor doña Luna, poor comadre, there is no rest for you.
We have given you so much responsibility, we've forgotten
what tiny bones we have, what small spaces we occupy.
Today, here we are: comadres, a pair of curandera eggs
sucking up the cries that keep the alleys wide.
Tomorrow, my body may adjust itself under the sheets
and you'll wait up for other sons alone, señora. That's why
I'm here now, weak and sleepless, pretending this night
I'll pluck one burden off your eye.
They are only the last in a caravan of martyrs.
~King Hussein of Jordan
The Saint's fate yet hangs in suspense, but his martyrdom, if it shall be perfected, will make the gallows as glorious as the cross.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson
But you will exceed all of them. For you will sacrifice the man that clothes me.
~Gospel of Judas
You might remember I posted entries on Pearl Abraham's books The Romance Reader and Giving Up America - both very good.
Wednesday, Boo is leaving by himself for Portland. There's just no way financially that we can afford to go together and there's no point in him flying and having me drive alone and then flying back. He will drive to Portland with the car full and a cat in a carrier. :(
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Includes a Preface by Kentucky author Wendell Berry. And if you've never read any of Frances Moore Lappé's books, add her to your list.
Another beautiful Saturday in the Bluegrass. Kinda of chilly in the shade after last night's rain, but wonderful in the sun. Went to the Farmer's Market and looked at their lovely soon-to-be-open pavilion. Had a cheese crepe made right in front of me, and then a scoop of Oreo ice cream. Then on to Sqecial (pronouced Skecial) to see if they had something. Was very surprised to see that CD Central, a local, independent music seller, was having lives bands in their back parking lot. I learned The Rough Customers were playing and I was immediately in love with the song.
This isn't the same song, and it's a lot slower than what was being played today, but enjoy.
I love her voice and the tall honey on the bass. Have a good weekend.
Friday, April 16, 2010
I'm giving in to my desire to speak.
Matt Smith to play gay!
Hold on: I thought Matt Smith was gay.
Via a comment at AfterElton:
That's from a fantastic play called Citizenship, by Mark Ravenhill (of Shopping and Fucking fame, but Citizenship is massively better). From what I know, Matt played 'Gay Gary', who's not actually gay, just a laid-back, slightly flamboyant stoner who's the best friend of the main character (the guy kissing him).
This will be my last post until Monday, so I wanted to leave you all with something other than the National Day of Silence - which honestly should have been more about speaking up and protesting. We've been silent enough.
Have a good weekend, loves.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Via I Should Be Laughing
Tomorrow is the National Day Of Silence, and I'm going quiet for the day because bullying, of any one, for any reason, is wrong, but bullying of children by children or by adults is especially disgusting.
Stay silent and think of:
- Phoebe Prince, bullied to death.
- J. Anoai, bullied because of his long hair.
- Jayron Martin, bullied and beaten with a metal pipe by one of his classmates.
- Jonathan Escobar, driven out of school because he's gay.
- Carl Joseph Walker Hoover, bullied to death.
- Steven Harmon, beaten by fellow students because he is gay.
- A thirteen-year-old boy in Florida raped with a hockey stick by four classmates.
- Jaheem Herrera, bullied to death.
- Jeremiah Lasater shot himself in the head rather than face another day of being bullied.
- Eric Mohat took his own life rather than face the bullies.
Stay silent and think of these names, and the hundreds of others, who can no longer speak.
So now, after adding these names to your soul, go out, get together and SCREAM!