I read recently that Rocky Hill, my new hometown, is “a typical bedroom community.” Nonsense. How many “typical bedroom communit[ies]” boast thousands of authentic dinosaur tracks from the Jurassic era, hundreds of which can be visited inside a whimsical building for nominal fee?
It’s winter — or the roller coaster that may pass this year for winter in Central Connecticut, with fits of warm weather, occasional low teens, minor snow or ice, but still with a simmering risk of cabin fever. (Sometimes just knowing it’s winter is enough to keep a person bundled up indoors, busy on some type of puzzle or book or computer.)
The tagline of this occasional blog – “The battles we fight, the wars we wage” — closely describes the life of Frederick Douglass, a Black man born in February 1818 in Talbot County, Maryland, a long-established Colonial community where, up until the Civil War, some one-quarter of all residents were of African or Caribbean descent, and were enslaved.
My nearly 88-year-old mother was awake until midnight recently, reading letters that took her back 50 years or more, to when her family was very different and included both her parents, and her father was ill with cancer that, in the martial vernacular of terminal illness, he fought valiantly. (If that means he maintained his love and compassion for others, despite his own painful illness, then yes, he fought valiantly.)
I am grateful every day to have been born into a nautical family. Continue reading “A Settling Sea – Family Vol. 5”
You don’t need to have lost a child at Sandy Hook.
You don’t need to have lost a close friend at Sandy Hook.
You can still recognize John Donne’s universal message – a meditation he wrote nearly 400 years ago – that each passing affects us all, as we are all members of the continent, all part of the main.
The sound of Canada geese taking to the air:
For the English, scroll down.
Für die Englisch, nach unten scrollen.
Special thanks to Steffi Smarsly for translation assistance.
Als ich 8 war, lebte ich im Norden Deutschland, im Schatten von Hamburg – eine der Wohnungen meiner Vorfahren. Mein Zuhause wurde dann Deutsch. Meine Schule war Deutsch. Mein Essen war Deutsch. Meine Freunde waren Deutsche. Ich war Deutsch. Continue reading “So Deutsch wie mein Großvater”
I’m may be the only person who has been attacked by a Navy SEAL – and lived to talk about it. Continue reading “Flights of Angels Sing Thee to thy Rest”
“The purpose of life is not to be happy,” insists Ralph Waldo Emerson. “It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
I never met Lauren Gabrielle Rousseau, who was murdered in December 2012 by a disturbed young man who had likewise never met her, but whose doting mother had provided him with access to high-powered firearms and who had made sure he was well trained in how to use them. Continue reading “Happy Birthday, Lauren Rousseau”
June is bustin’ out all over …
“Will the Circle be Unbroken”
Performed by Gregg Allman
There have been many verses written for the Gospel hymn “Will the Circle be Unbroken.” The original was written in 1907 by Ada R. Habershon, with music by Charles H. Gabriel, but the song has been reworked and rewritten many times, most notably by The Carter Family. Among the probably hundreds of recordings of the song is this one, featuring Gregg Allman – founder of The Allman Brothers – from his first solo album, “Laid Back.”
Gregg Allman passed out of this life on Saturday, May 27, 2017.