Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Youthful Cove

In medio Tutorissimus ibis.
"Thou shalt walk in the midst of thy Tutors."

ONCE on a time a youthful cove
As was a cheery lad
Lived in a villa by the sea.—
The cove was not so bad;

The dogs and cats, the cows and ass,
The birds in cage or grove
The rabbits, hens, ducks, pony, pigs
All loved that cheery lad.

Seven folks—one female and six male,—
Seized on that youthful cove;
They said—"To edjukate this chap
Us seven it doth behove."

The first his parrient was,—who taught
The cove to read and ride,
Latin, and Grammarithemetic,
And lots of things beside.

Says Pa, "I'll spare no pains or time
Your school hours so to cut,
And sqare and fit, that you will make
No end of progress—but—,"

Says Mrs. Grey,—"I'll teach him French,
Pour parler dans cette pays—
Je cris, qu'il parlera bien,
Même comme un Francais—Mais—"

Says Signor Gambinossi,—"Si
Progresso si farà,
Lo voglio insegnare qui,
La lingua mia,—ma,"—

Says Mr. Grump,—"Geology,
And Mathetics stiff
I'll teach the cove, who's sure to go
Ahead like blazes,—if—"

Says James—"I'll teach him everyday
My Nastics: now and then
To stand upon his 'ed; and make
His mussels harder,—when"—

Says Signor Bianchi,—"Lascia far;—
La musica da me,
Ben insegnata gli serà;—
Farà progresso,—Se—"

Says Edmund Lear—"I'll make him draw
A Palace, or a hut,
Trees, mountains, rivers, cities, plains,
And p'rapps to paint them—but

So all these 7 joined hands and sang
This chorus by the sea;—
"O! Ven his edjukation's done,
By! Vot a cove he'll be!"


Monday, July 20, 2009


9/A Via Albaro

Love Calls Us To The Things of This World

The eyes open to a cry of pulleys,
And spirited from sleep, the astounded soul
Hangs for a moment bodiless and simple
As false dawn.

Outside the open window
The morning air is all awash with angels.

Some are in bed-sheets, some are in blouses,
Some are in smocks: but truly there they are.
Now they are rising together in calm swells
Of halcyon feeling, filling whatever they wear
With the deep joy of their impersonal breathing;

Now they are flying in place, conveying
The terrible speed of their omnipresence, moving
And staying like white water; and now of a sudden
They swoon down into so rapt a quiet
That nobody seems to be there.
The soul shrinks

From all that it is about to remember,
From the punctual rape of every blessed day,
And cries,

“Oh, let there be nothing on earth but laundry,
Nothing but rosy hands in the rising steam
And clear dances done in the sight of heaven."

Yet, as the sun acknowledges
With a warm look the world’s hunks and colors,
The soul descends once more in bitter love
To accept the waking body, saying now
In a changed voice as the man yawns and rises,

"Bring them down from their ruddy gallows;
Let there be clean linen for the backs of thieves;
Let lovers go fresh and sweet to be undone,
And the heaviest nuns walk in a pure floating
Of dark habits,
keeping their difficult balance.’

Friday, July 17, 2009

From the Archives

The Way of the World, Continued
Activism and Apology

September 20th, 2006

West Elmsborough - The Fire-bombings of Our Lady of the Perpetual Guitar in the small township of West Elmsborough have gradually dwindled since Pope Benedict the 16th’s inflammatory speech last week. Father Dwain O’Sullaghan, the happy-clap, saxophone playing priest of Our Lady of the Perpetual Guitar, or as his parishioners call him, “Father Dwain,” speaking from the smoldering remains of the narthex, remarked yesterday to a barrage of reporters, that he “holds no grudge against these ‘activists,” as he calls them. “Diversity is something we need to embrace and the best way to do that is to try and understand where these people are coming from.”

Where are these people coming from? The answer is quite obvious to this writer. These activists are raiding West Elmsborough from the constantly moving settlement of Al Fazi-Baroum, the sometimes local Bedouin community now located to the North of West Elmsborough and the West of North Elmsborough. “We have declared Jihad on this petty Christian shrine,” said Farid Ben-Aboom, the hook-nosed, hooka smoking Sha of Al Fazid-Baroum, “and until we get a good teary-eyed apology from the Vatican we will continue to raid the Christian temple till there is nothing left but to salt the ground where it once stood.”

Tribulation Winthrop, the doughty town councilwoman of West Elmsborough was heard commenting to her neighbor, in what she thought was the privacy of her backyard, “I don’t like this Ben Aboom man one little bit,” but a passing leaf-blower prevented her other neighbor who wishes to remain anonymous from hearing any further remarks.

Apology from the Vatican or no, West Elmsborough must, in the opinion of this writer, face the growing diversity of New Hampshire, or this little apple-growing township may face worse things than a Bedouin raiding party.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Tennyson, To Edward Lear on His Travels in Greece

Illyrian woodlands, echoing falls
Of water, sheets of summer glass,
The long divine Peneian pass,
The vast Akrokeraunian walls,

Tomohrit, Athos, all things fair,
With such a pencil, such a pen,
You shadow forth to distant men,
I read and felt that I was there:

And trust me while I turn'd the page,
And track'd you still on classic ground,
I grew in gladness till I found
My spirits in the golden age.

For me the torrent ever pour'd
And glisten'd -- here and there alone
The broad-limb'd gods at random thrown
By fountain urns; -- and Naiads oar'd

A glimmering shoulder under gloom
Of cavern pillars; on the swell
The silver lily heaved and fell;
And many a slope was rich in bloom

From him that on the mountain lea
By dancing rivulets fed his flocks,
To him who sat upon the rocks,
And fluted to the morning sea.

And Lear's parody:

Delirious Bulldogs; -- echoing calls
My daughter, -- green as summer grass; --
The long supine Plebeian ass,
The nasty crockery boring falls; --

Tom-Moory Pathos; -- all things bare, --
With such a turket! such a hen!
And scrambling forms of distant men,
O! ain't you glad you were not there!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Monte Fasce

The climb began at the ancient fishing village of Boccaddassa (with Monte Fasce in the background).

A Vespa Si moped.

What looked like a sheep shelter near the summit.

The view of Genoa from the side of Monte Fasce.

Don't where Vans Classics while mountain climbing... or take on entire thorn bushes.

At the top.

Iron Crosses and cellphone towers.

A Napoleonic Fortress

A stump covered in the tacks of the pious in the cloister of the Franciscan Monestary on Monte Fasce.

The way down.

Back into Genoa.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Refitting and Painting the Hattifattener

The Hattifattener gets its name painted on the stern:

The Hattifattener's Flag

Wequetonsing Bass Fishn'

"I'm going to catch that fish."