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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Goodbye, birds ...

With a sense of delight and a calm tinge of sadness, I awoke this morning to the smell of the sweet air of autumn and to the void the birds are leaving behind. They are solemnly preparing to go south; and they are not singing. There is no reason for them to sing: They are not defending territory nor are they in the mood to mate; a long, torturous journey awaits them.

May your wings be strong and swift, in a journey long and misspent.

Goodbye, birds: I’ll see you next year, if I am so lucky to still be here.


Monday, September 13, 2010

The Old Man and the Sea

With each book I read, there is usually a line that has a lenitive effect on me--which I try to memorize.

"He was too simple to wonder when he had attained humility. But he knew he had attained it and he knew it was not disgraceful and it carried no loss of true pride." --The Old Man and the Sea, Hemingway. A masterpiece.

Friday, September 10, 2010

The Grunting Place

When I saw this line form a previous post ,"...could not keep a straight face and ran out of the grunting place," my poetic leaning tingled, and hence the following poem.

Today I was in the gym, and the men were lifting the weights.
Their work-outs were always accompanied by loud masculine grunts, to keep up the pace.
There was a guy who grunted with every lift “Chipss.”
And I could not keep a straight face, and ran out of the grunting place.
But before I left the place, I'd observed this case:
with dignity and smoothness, many a woman had exercised, without a grunt or a contorted face.
They'd reserved the grunting for a different time and different place.
Can't the men, for once, learn form the fine, upstanding kinds in this case.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Loud Masculine Grunts

Today I was in the gym, and the men were lifting and they had wanted everyone to know that they were
sweating it out: Their work-outs were always accompanied by loud masculine grunts and gasps of "Ahhh, Ahhh, goooodd"; and there was a guy who grunted loudly with every lift "Chipss, Chipss" and I could not keep a straight face and ran out of the grunting place.

Moreover, the women exercised (they always do) with dignity and smoothness and without grunting at all.
They save the grunting for a different time and a different place. Can the men, for once, learn something
from the fine, upstanding kind? At any rate, that's my inanity for the night.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Camping With Murderers

Whitewater State Park is alluring and worthy of your visit. It's not known for murderers, really, to camp in it; except for the two men who knew how to choose a great place to enjoy on their last day of freedom.

Of all the places in the whole country, the murderers of the Florida family were enjoying their last day of freedom in the majestic Blufflands of southeastern Minnesota, camping in Whitewater State Park, where we just camped.

We arrived Thursday evening at the Park. The ranger pulled out a Press Release and informed us that earlier that day at 1:40 a.m., the Florida fugitives were arrested when the U.S. Marshals and Winona SWAT team had stormed their camper, throwing in two concussion grenades, breaking windows and doors. In terror and confusion, the sleeping campers were awakened by the commotions (I later spoke to one of them who had been slumbering thirty feet away when the bombs went off).

The good news is that no one was hurt and the fugitives were apprehended. Only one family left the park that same night. Shaken and unable to sleep for the remainder of the night, the rest of the campers stayed:
They were in a good spot for Labor Day and were not going to lose it for a small war breaking in their midst. Minnesotans are hardy and have a record to prove it.

Despite the excitement, we had a wonderful experience camping there for four days. Had it not been for the ranger telling us what had happened that morning, we would not have known that a quiet, sensitive, and magnificent a place was the scene of such ugliness.

http://www.winonadailynews.com/news/local/article_a01b3fba-b68f-11df-8a66-001cc4c002e0.html