Thursday, March 26, 2009

Second Anniversary of Blog, Spice Drawer Mouse

A cube that includes Maud, the mouse who was my pet in the 1980's. This 3-D reminds me she had a wheel, also there was a Liberty Ball - she was only willing one time to try the Liberty Ball. She became a little seasick rolling.
March 27 is the second anniversary of my blog, Spice Drawer Mouse. I was visited once by a mouse who was investigating the spice drawer. The entry was later covered with screen.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The U of W Cherry Trees

Today I visited the U of W to see what the cherry trees look like. Those inside the quad have a practically transparant red cloud as a canopy. Viewed closely this cloud was many buds still rather closed - at some old trees a few blossoms that are at places along the trunk are open white and pink flowers.

There was a robin and a chickadee as well as squirrels, a bird chased by a crow flew above me, a piece of plant trailed from his beak, he was pale brown stripes below and the size of the crow, they flew around the hall so I could not see more.

Correction to "Poetic Authority"

"Yoo Hoo Killed Cock Robin" did not feature Beauregard the Hound as I described it in my earlier blog. The poem was read aloud by Albert Alligator. It matters to have the facts correct, I should have checked the book, The Pogo Peek-A-Book, instead of relying on recall.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

seven at books at 12:10 not six

When counting the number at books at 12:10 I visualized an earlier discussion moment than after a steady participant arrived slightly tardy. Vast apologies.

Poetic Authority

In an essay about my book Memory a critic discusses my relation to the idea of Poetic Authority.These essays about my work can be reached from the list of publications here at this blog. - my access to this theory of Poetic Authority returned me at the time to the childhood readings of Pogo - Rowrbazzle! whatever such a word means.

Poetic Authority springs from Milton - Milton needed Poetic Authority from the church of his time to publish - and I learned that his work was read as having Divine Inspiration. My own expectation is that my own poems are not Divinely Inspired in this way. I enter my comment here not as a Disclaimer - I have no idea what a Disclaimer on such a thing could mean. The critic wonders if I have Poetic Authority - I would believe I had no more Poetic Authority (Divine Inspiration) than any other person who has published or had a degree from the University of Iowa Writers Workshop. I think it is Poetic Licence.

It is nearly Easter, I return at times to thoughts of childhood readings in Pogo - At this point from reading and being on the internet about the psalms - Who Killed Cock Robin - "I, said the thrush as she sat in the bush, I will sing him a psalm."(Then Beauregard, the hound, who is reading the poem aloud, asks, "What's a pea-salm?"), Poets on the Psalms, which includes an essay by Madelyn Defrees among others.

When First Lutheran Church headed into celebrating its 125th anniversary I was able to contribute to the choir with song translations of two hymns from Swedish that had been part of their standard along with a translation of a hymn which was a translation of Psalm 19 by Ludwig Runeberg, the Swedish-Finnish poet, a hymn with a long presence at First Lutheran Church in Tacoma, Washington.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Today the homily at the Lenten service was about Dietrich Bonhoefer, so I hoped to work a comment about his writings on grief during yesterday's Books at 12:10 Discussion of Sherman Alexie's Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. I located a discussion, section by section, of the Beatitudes - Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted - which referred to the comfort of the bereaved being Christ. Dietrich Bonhoefer was a Lutheran pastor who was executed in 1945 in Nazi Germany for his resistance participation. He studied in the United States in 1930 and did a lecture tour in the United States in 1939. His writings were in the format of homilies.

Because Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian is Young Adult fiction, I looked in a few books about it - I think the book has been published as Grief Therapy, but shelved with Young Adult books because all young adults should very well handle the sad parts of the plot.

One reader commented that when she became a widow in the middle of the 1990's her children saw the movie Smoke Signals, which Sherman Alexie developed from fiction he had written, fiction based on life experiences. It affirmed their experience.

The point I wanted to discuss was that the format matters in putting the information across to those who need it - the fiction format is accessible in ways other possible formats are not.

Six were present during the discussion, our comments were enthusiastic.

Monday, March 9, 2009

100th anniversary of U of W Scandinavian Department

March marks the 100th anniversary of the Scandinavian Department at the University of Washington. One hundred years ago was also the Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition that left remarkable campus structure. (Also, Laura Jensen has a poem at Salt River Review.)

chewmute - daffodils in the snow

Snow yesterday that melted and snow this morning again.

My photo is from December. Again snow which droops down daffodils along the brick building wall and snow everywhere.

(This morning also a candy ad on the side of a bus. The blogs are a terribly fun way of doing things - maybe Snickers really has a blog point to make, not merely a sales blog gimmick.)

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I Have Walked, or Used Public Transportation of Used a Bike

I have never owned a car. Elizabeth Alexander, who wrote the inaugural poem was interviewed at the Indianapolis Star. In one part of the narrative she said, I remember a time when I pulled the car over to the side of the road because I wanted to jot something down...Women, I have read, have believed the automobile has empowered them. Recent analysis has been that women are more burdened by car-dependency than empowered by cars, are chauffering people and on the highway too much. There are people who dislike this poem - inevitably there has to be a confusion as it is discussed because of the topic and because of the car-dependency. My impression was that her voice sounded out clear and musical and that I understood the topic and the refrain and felt interested in reading it later. I am concerned about the issue of car-dependency and I walk.

How Do You Say You Do Not Want More Children Without Sounding Like A Philistine?

Some free civics classes called Government Leadership Institute are happening in February and March. Lots of discussion about economic life in the city at the U of W Tacoma Branch. Monday evening the discussion was about schools.

I read the cartoons, and a favorite from last year does come to mind for me, from Sally Forth: last summer Sally and her husband Ted decided not to have another child, in one episode Ted said, How do you say you do not want to have another child without sounding like a Philistine?

The Philistine reference occurred earlier in a Sally Forth episode, (was it the one where she wanted to put his mounted fish in the garage sale?) By Philistine we refer to Goliath the giant who was slain by David with only a slingshot. The term was first used, according to the Reader's Encyclopedia, by Matthew Arnold to refer to an uncivilized, dangerous outsider.

The cartoons sometimes offer insight into human nature. It is hard to discuss family size without sounding like an uncivilized, dangerous outsider. As a life-long non-parent, I often feel at special risk on this point.

February 2 Tim Farrell, Julie Anderson, and Bruce Kendall did Regional Competition, Coordination, and Cooperation. Most memorably, Bruce Kendall compared regional economics to a giant pick-up basketball game, those who happen along play. Julie Anderson observed that groups can actually not do the lobbying that can advance their interest. With technology more voices can put their concerns forward.

February 9 Lauren Walker, Paul Turek, Bob Levin, and Armando Mendoza did Strengthening and Expanding the Local Labor Market. Lauren Walker from the city council narrated a story about how internships help people who work to advance their educations. Paul Turek, a labor economist, described the online data and opportunities provided by WorkSource.

February 23 other priorities required me to be away from Human Capital Development in Tacoma. (I have to assume they were spinning straw into gold.)

Monday, March 2, Jim Dugan from the school board and Dr. Jarvis, the school superintendant, with Marilyn Strickland from the city council, did Schools. Marilyn Strickland said it was an uphill effort to add education to the scope of city government, but now the city can say of all of the students in K-16, "they are ours". In Tacoma, the school system and the Metro Parks system are separate from city government. At present, education is a part of the city standard scope. She discussed how the city government helps provide the safe, clean, attractive context necessary for the attainment of education, including the library system, Safe Streets, and after school tutoring and opportunities. The city includes higher learning in the K-16 educational description.

March 9 Mayor Baarsma and Eric Anderson, the city manager, will be present for Urban Power and Decision-Making.

The Government Leadership Institute is organized by Mark Pendross from University of Washington Tacoma Branch's Urban Studies Program and Elton Gatewood of Tacoma's Neighborhood Council Office.

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