Saturday, June 24, 2006

The Greatest Thing That Ever Came To Kansas

This poem by James Dickey destroyed me (still does) when I first read it 10 or so years ago. It details the awful falling of a stewardess who is accidentally sucked out the door of an airplane somewhere over the midwest. Dickey once said this about the stewardess in Falling:

"Falling" is a record of the way she feels as she falls; panic at first and then a kind of goddess-like invulnerability. She discovers that the human body can actually fly a little bit. She tries to find water to fall into, but in the end she can’t and falls into a cornfield and dies there. She undresses on the way down, because since she’s going to die she wants to die, as she says, "beyond explanation." She would rather be found naked in a cornfield than in an airline uniform. So she takes off everything, is clean, purely desirable, purely woman, and dies in that way. I also tried to think of the mystical possibility there might be for farmers in that vicinity, under those conditions.

It's rather long but worth your time, especially the poems end, which is perfect.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Hello, I'm Adorable

Just a little super cuteness before we head off to do a little reading. More later, especially concerning the showing of a new 35mm print of Victor Erice's The Spirit of the Beehive, one of the most beautiful and poetic depectitions of childhood I've ever seen. I watched a well-worn VHS copy of it a few years back when we were living in Berkeley, so an opportunity to see it on the big screen is really exciting. It's showing at the Music Box July 7-13th and I can't recommend it highly enough. If I have my way, all Chicagoites will be joining me to watch it.

London Summer

With all this peculiar late-September like weather we had this weekend I think this song needs to come to our rescue. It's from the wonderful compilation London Is The Place For Me 2: Calypso & Kwela, Highlife & Jazz From Young Black London and it captures some of those elements that exemplify summer-- the lilting quality of the gently looping bass that introduces the song, the soothing splashes of percussion and muted horn that nicely merge along with the balm of weaving vocal chants and a lovely daub of flute all conspire so that I can practically see that big old fat summer sun quietly slipping into a pair of swim trunks for a dip in the pool. Gorgeous. Thanks, Joe!

Yolanda: Ambrose Campbell

Update: Yousendit seems to have been having some problems with the original download link. They sent me a new link, so please let me know if you want to download this (you do!) but are still having problems.

Oh, and Happy Birthday to my Dad! Like Paul McCartney, he's turning 64.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Movies I Saw Numerous Times Over the Three Months My Parents Subscribed to Cable Television in the Early 80's

Ice Castles
Hawk the Slayer

The Incredible Shrinking Woman
Cannonball Run
Any Which Way You Can
The Black Hole
Urban Cowboy

What am I forgetting?
Socks, Be Gone With You!

There’s much I’d like to share with you (or at you) though I’m finding the miserable state of my sock collection to be the most pressing. This caught me completely off guard, as if, huddled together in the dispiriting corners of my sock drawer, they made a collective agreement to simultaneously go threadbare in the heels and hollow in the toes.

So I’ve gone about throwing them away. On any given day you can find a discarded pair in our trash atop banana peals, coffee grounds and various Abby related discharges. Initially I felt that odd maudlin regret you sometimes get when parting with articles of clothing (“Oh, I’ve had some mighty good times in those socks!) though this has quickly given way to a late spring-cleaning resolve to rid myself of as many cheerless socks as possible.

Filines Basement, here I come.