They did it to help the farmers. They didn’t realize it would destroy everything else.
The song inspired many subsequent rewrites, including Eddie Vedder‘s memorable Here’s to the State of George W.
I find Vedder’s song so moving now, after all that’s happened since Bush’s disastrous administration. He said it right: “When the court elected a president it was the beginning of this war.”
But when it comes to raving clowns, no president compares to our present officeholder. I wasn’t surprised to find several rewrites in honor of The Donald. I thought this one was pretty great.
Here is a mason jar full of fireflies courtesy of a battery, a switch, and some candle flicker LEDs. Enjoy.
A public service announcement from the Scarfolk Council:
by James Wright
She’s gone. She was my love, my moon or more.
She chased the chickens out and swept the floor,
Emptied the bones and nut-shells after feasts,
And smacked the kids for leaping up like beasts.
Now morbid boys have grown past awkwardness;
The girls let stitches out, dress after dress,
To free some swinging body’s riding space
And form the new child’s unimagined face.
Yet, while vague nephews, spitting on their curls,
Amble to pester winds and blowsy girls,
What arm will sweep the room, what hand will hold
New snow against the milk to keep it cold?
And who will dump the garbage, feed the hogs,
And pitch the chickens’ heads to hungry dogs?
Not my lost hag who dumbly bore such pain:
Childbirth at midnight sassafras and rain.
New snow against her face and hands she bore,
And now lies down, who was my moon or more.
Reading by Garrison Keillor:
Back in January, last January, I decided to keep a log of the books I’m reading. At first it was a list, and after a short while I began to write down the date I finished the story. I’ve included an image of the cover for the books I liked, which you might like as well. Here we go:
The 12 Caesars, by Suetonius
Edwin of the Iron Shoes, by Marcia Mueller.
Armada, by Ernest Cline. Feb 1st.
Dixie City Jam, by James Lee Burke. Feb 15th.
The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden, by Jonas Jonasson, translated by Rachel Willson-Broyles. Feb 26th.
Full Dark House, by Christopher Fowler. March 6th.
Cold Dark Trail, by Jarkko Sipila, translated by Christian London. March 16th.
Don’t Look Now, by Daphne Du Maurier. March 26th.
The Nemesis Affair, by David M Raup. April 7th.
A Canticle for Leibowitz, by Walter M Miller, jr. April 23rd.
The Last Picture Show, by Larry McMurtry. April 30th.
A Pocketful of Noses, by James Powell. May 15th.
The Bourne Identity, by Robert Ludlum. May 25th. A 608 page story that could’ve been told in 250 pages.
Edgar A. Poe, A Biography, by Kenneth Silverman. June 16th. Stopped reading at 141 pages.
Acolytes of Cthulhu, edited by Robert M Price. July 10th.
Mycroft Holmes, by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. July 17th.
Seven Brothers, by Aleksis Kivi, translated by Richard A. Impola. Aug 25th.
Beautiful Ruins, by Jess Walter. Aug 30th.
(At this point I lost track of what I was reading & when I read it)
The Two Towers, By J.R.R. Tolkien. Early September.
Black Hole, by Charles Burns. Mid Sept.
Orcs, by Stan Nicholls. Mid Sept. Stopped reading at 150 pages.
The King in Yellow, by Robert W Chambers. Late Sept, maybe early Oct. Get your notable heights of cosmic fear right here.
The Explorers Guild, by John Baird & Kevin Costner. Oct 24th.
Bazaar of Bad Dreams, by Stephen King. Nov 10th.
Pretty Monsters, by Kelly Link. Dec 15th.
Five on a Treasure Island, by Enid Blyton. Dec 19th.
Five Go to Smuggler’s Top, By Enid Blyton. Dec 29th.
And that’s about it. Might’ve missed one or two in the fall and early winter. I’d say my favorite was The Explorers Guild. Part novel, part graphic novel, it’s quite an adventure story & I liked it very much. What have you been reading?