Thursday, June 11, 2020

Evanston: priorities; ubiquitous; instead of the evening news

Above you have a curious threesome, whose only link is that they all came to my attention in the past few days and interest me.

At the top is a photo Steve Earley took on his most recent Social Distancing Cruise.  Note how neat and uncluttered his Welsford Yawl, SPARTINA, is, as always.  To my eye pleasing and to my mind a mark of a good sailor.  SPARTINA is sailing off her namesake sea grass.  The land is the east shore of the Chesapeake, but it could be Hilton Head.  I thank him again for permission to repost from his online log.

In the middle is the front page of the THE WORLD reporting the destruction of Galveston in the 1900 hurricane.  I thank Tim for sending it to me.  He observes that the greatest national disaster in the history of the United States got second billing to a baseball game.

And last is ‘Satan Exulting Over Eve’ by the mystic poet painter William Blake which I happened across at Goggle Arts.  I include it because I smile every time I see it.  We have Satan who looks as though he works out, but does not seem happy with his triumph.  A sinister serpent.  And an Eve who appears to have passed out.  Perhaps the taste of the apple was too much.  Or her first sex.

The remnants of tropical storm Christobal passed not far to the west of us Tuesday night with rain and winds in the area reported as high as 74 mph/64 knots.  We did not have more than 30 knot winds here, but they were enough to set the sea of leaves outside our windows into seething motion.  I am surprised that the storm maintained such strength after being over land for so long.

I have warned you.  I am everywhere.  The latest proof came in an email from Sam, an American who is working on his doctorate in composites in Australia.  He saw my mention of the novel COVENTRY and wrote to tell me that he spent last year living and studying there.  He told me that Coventry is appropriately a sister city with Dresden, Germany, which was also bombed to destruction, but with much greater loss of life.

Also, Goggle notified me yesterday that SF Gate has just posted a link to the piece I wrote on why I sail for LATITUDE 38 last year.   They reference ‘Thoughts From A Single Hander’.
I went back and reread the piece myself.  Modesty prevents me from saying how much I like it.  Oh, I just did.  If you want to check my judgement.

As is known I do not watch or listen to what poses as the Evening News.  Carol does.  We sit side by side on the sofa.  She usually sipping an Old Fashioned; I a martini.  I have my AirPod Pros in with noise cancelling on and listen to music, usually Bach, or read poetry.  Sometimes it is ‘and/or’, but I generally pause the music when reading.  Poetry deserves undivided attention, as does Bach.  

Currently I am reading a poem or two each evening from a Greek, C. P. Cavafy; a Portuguese, Fernando Pessoa; an American, Sara Teasdale; and an Englishman, Wilfred Owen.  It is a great pleasure to touch such minds and spirits.

Last evening I read:

By Cavafy




Owen was killed seven days before the end of the war.

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