Monday, September 28, 2020
Saturday, September 26, 2020
Sunday, September 20, 2020
In 1960 as I graduated from high school in St. Paul the first trees were identified with the Dutch elm disease. The trees over arched most of the city streets& sheltered all. Ten years later Minneapolis and St. Paul lost virtually all of their street trees. Crews had removed tens of thousands of diseased elms to slow the spread . All to no avail .Eventually elms throughout the state were under attack & only a scattered few in the woods here and there survived. I live on Oak Hill Drive in SpringValley, Minnesota and a large tree died in our woods this summer, so without looking close I assumed that it was an oak tree. Wrong. It was an ELM. Age &comon sense mean I don' cut down huge trees any more . A local tree service did the job that elm tree must've been around the hundred feet tall. Take a look.
Saturday, September 12, 2020
Saturday, September 5, 2020
Passion and poetry
the passions of our life can come at most any stage. My first as doubtless is true for most boys was my mom. I’ve often been struck in reading war novels upon recognizing their impending death the young warriors most often cry out for their mothers. I was always a mama’s boy till the day she died. She was a saint and my role model for values and behavior. I didn’t always live up to her standards in many areas but I knew she would be disappointed when I had done wrong. She brought me to the St. Paul library when I was three years of age. There in the children’s room began my lifelong love of books which continues to this day as a great passion. Reading a lot I believe made a writer out of me and a storyteller as well. Those abilities were rewarded in high school by all my English teachers with praise and recognition. I live for that praise today through the venue of my blogs and book reviews. Since I do that for free it obviously is a passion that rewards itself. Hobbies can also develop into passions and the following poem by author Robert Trevor is an example from my own life. I'm going trout fishing in the woods today. Would you like to come along?
I must add that I loved my teaching career best but fly fishing was my favorite outlet. People would occasionally as me what the attraction was and I had a hard time putting it into words. Famous Michigan Judge and fifties novelist Robert Traver (Anatomy of a Murder) said it best.....
“I fish because I love to. Because I love the environs where trout are found, which are invariably beautiful, and hate the environs where crowds of people are found, which are invariably ugly. Because of all the television commercials, cocktail parties, and assorted social posturing I thus escape. Because in a world where most men seem to spend their lives doing what they hate, my fishing is at once an endless source of delight and an act of small rebellion. Because trout do not lie or cheat and cannot be bought or bribed, or impressed by power, but respond only to quietude and humility, and endless patience. Because I suspect that men are going this way for the last time and I for one don't want to waste the trip. Because mercifully there are no telephones on trout waters. Because in the woods I can find solitude without loneliness. ... And finally, not because I regard fishing as being so terribly important, but because I suspect that so many of the other concerns of men are equally unimportant and not nearly so much fun.”
Friday, September 4, 2020
Okay , I will confess that my use of my next favorite poem Shelley’s OZYMANDIAS in the wisdom of hindsight may be a bit over-the-top. In the wake of George Bush II the seconds ill advised and ineptly run assault on Saddam Hussein’s Iraq in search of weapons of destruction that did not exist, well the facts were wrong and the advice was worse. I thought at the time he would go down in history as one of our worst presidents by far. Needless to say given what we have in the White House at the present makes Bush look a whole lot better. And added to that when he left the office he refused in good conscience to turn around and say one single word against Obama who followed him. I would say on that alone he was and is an honorable former president
You have a bad toothache and its a few days before you can see the dentist. It hurts and you find your tongue unconsciously reaching for the spot and it hurts even more. Mrs. T dropped me off at the barbershop in Rochester and after finishing my business and still awaiting her return, I headed around the corner for something to do. Thus, I found myself in the Goodwill store picking up a few books at a super bargain price. There was the classic The Call of the Wild by Jack London read long ago as a teenager. Then I found The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver. Having recently read her new novel Flight Behavior I wanted more. The State of Denial by Bob Woodward was next to be dropped in the basket. Yes it was the later that caused the pain. I knew it would be painful to read yet I still took it home. After reading the book I decided that it was Woodward who was in a State Of Denial about his two earlier sycophantic books about the Bush II administration. He appeared to be trying to make up for previous blunders. It was sort of a novelistic, gossipy, fly on the wall type of documentary reporting. The book also contained a lot of trivia (did we really need to know Bush and Cheney liked to trade fart jokes at important meetings) , yet it also brought forth an overpowering indictment of the arrogance and incompetence of Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney,What a tragic farce it all was…..
Egypt it remains in the museum today. This allegedly
inspired him to write Ozymandis. One of my
all-time favorite poems: