Saturday, January 28, 2017

Pinky, bent

        His nauseating signal
        of the exquisite when
        he envisions a crime.

        Make no mistake: this
        cruelty is of a taste
        he truly must pursue.

        The dog whistles him-
        self with pinky bent.

                                                   "These are people with valid visas and 
                                                   legitimate refugee claims who have al-
                                                   ready been determined by the State De-
                                                   partment and the Department of Home-
                                                   land Security to be admissible and to be 
                                                   allowed to enter the U.S. and now are be-
                                                   ing unlawfully detained," Mr. Doss said.

Settling iii


           I don't object
           to the reality
           that there may
           be leading ed-
           ges; if I knew
           where they led
           I couldn't be-
           lieve in risk.



Friday, January 27, 2017


          better weeks
          heard better
          on the road.

Caleb Byrum
Jake Rose

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The objection to honesty

          is the objection
          to courage, that
          it's so elegant;

          isn't it notice-
          able, how an ab-
          sence of courage
          is giving every-
          one hope of nev-
          er abandoning it

          that so few days
          have reinforced,
          so strongly, the
          contagious taste
          for living well?

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Taking the measure of Tamerlane

Such were
the days,
that made
a hero of
a tyrant;

but never
without a
voice for
raising a
le doubt.

this fake
our times
thrust up.

Antonio Vivaldi
  Barbaro traditor
David Daniels
Fabio Biondi
Europa Galante, 2005

Abby Phillip
Trump Names his In-
  auguration Day a "Na-
  tional Day of Patriotic
The Washington Post
January 23, 2017

Monday, January 23, 2017

Damon Winter, Childe Hassam, and this cavalcade

Events trigger interpretations,
not only musings drawn by mem-
ory, but observations properly
facilitated by preparedness. We
watch a parade prepared by lem-
mings, from resentments and raw
ignorance, which tasks the mind
to breathe as it was built to
do, ever conscious of a vacuum
at the core of what it sees. If
this readiness had a camera, it

Now the passenger in the gaud-
iest coach in this procession
of last Friday passes an ob-
struction at First and Pennsyl-
vania, whose impertinence must
enrage him if he knew its der-
ivation. There is the memorial
to James Garfield, a President
shot for greater respect for
Civil Service than the passen-
ger could acquire in any decade
of the penance to which the
Laws cry out to deliver him,
his despotic, nepotistic cron-
ies trailing after him.

There is the memorial to Ulys-
ses S. Grant, corruption's pat-
ron saint until the passenger's
own rise transcended imagina-
tion, itself; but who had such
uncanny literary honesty as to
leave Memoirs of which we know
we can't deny two things: the
passenger hasn't read them and
will not, and they convey to 
posterity a confession every
sensate mind must mourn, of
his negligent squandering of
loyalty to rank and country 
at Cold Harbor. For that, we
have obstruction to remember,
a fortified concentration of
remorseless rebellious power.

But what Damon Winter captures
the figures, Grief and History.
The one, a sense the passenger
cannot master, the other, just
a context he condemns. Winter
expected this photograph, he
was ready for this photograph,
and this weekend The New York
Times let us see it online. We
felt it coming, long ago. We
saw what they were doing and 
they did it, but not by honest
dealing. That is not their way.

On this morning, January 23,
around this corner in down-
town Manhattan, the first of
what must surely be a torrent
of lawsuits against the pas-
senger, personally, is being
brought in Federal Court for 
the Southern District of New
York, one of the most awesome
sites of jurisprudence in our
history. The passenger will
be hauled to the bar of jus-
tice for being in breach of
the United States Constitu-
tion's prohibition of his ac-
ceptance of any form of pres-
ent from foreign governments.

How seamlessly the strands of
memory converge to snare the
gift of reason, we know too
well. Yet how idle to deny,
this cavalcade's not new, and

Damon Winter
The Peace Monument
January 20, 2017
The New York Times©

Childe Hassam
Wall and Broad
Johnson Museum of Art
Cornell University

Casey Jackson

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Settling ii

         Shortbread and
         berries with a
         crème anglaise 
         if we make it.


And such a glittering arc of justice, too

First, he had the presence
of mind to rip out of the
Oval Office, the carpet em-
broidered with King's fam-
ous observation on the arc
of justice - it is long.

Much subdued discourage-
ment was muttered, here
and there, among the
faithless at the time,
seeming to project inad-
equately absolute loyal-
ty to America. Thus, the
next thing he did, once
he got the keys to the
place and grabbed a short
night's sleep, was to pre-
cipitate a pissing contest
over crowd size, sending
out his mouthpiece to vow
that the press would pay.

We've all been counseled:
ignore the infantilism of
his conduct, and engage
positively with him where
common ground can be found
in policy matters. Given,
though, that thought, word,
and deed soak up so much
of a fellow's time, to say
nothing of common ground,
they rather do extend the 
arc of justice into policy. 
We will never be ignored 
again; why should he be?

iii  Martina Millen