Warning: This is really long (1700 words)
An Indian-Summer Reverie
What visionary tints the year puts on,
When failing leaves falter through motionless air
Or numbly cling and shiver to be gone!
How shimmer the low flats and pastures bare,
As with her nectar Hebe Autumn fills
The bowl between me and those distant hills,
And smiles and shakes abroad her misty, tremulous hair!
No more the landscape holds its wealth apart.
Making me poorer in my poverty,
But mingles with my senses and my heart;
My own projected spirit seems to me
In her own reverie the world to steep;
‘Tis she that waves to sympathetic sleep,
Moving, as she is moved, each field and hill, and tree.
How fuse and mix, with what unfelt degrees,
Clasped by the faint horizon’s languid arms,
Each into each, the hazy distances!
The softened season all the landscape charms;
Those hills, my native village that embay,
In waves of dreamier purple roll away,
And floating in mirage seem all the glimmering farms.
Far distant sounds the hidden chickadee
Close at my side; far distant sound the leaves;
The fields seem fields of dream, where Memory
Wanders like gleaning Ruth; and as the sheaves
Of wheat and barley wavered in the eye
Of Boaz as the maiden’s glow went by,
So tremble and seem remote all things the sense receives.
The cock’s shrill trump that tells of scattered corn,
Passed breezily on by all his flapping mates,
Faint and more faint, from barn to barn is borne,
Southward, perhaps to far Magellan’s Straits;
Dimly I catch the throb of distant flails;
Silently overhead the henhawk sails,
With watchful, measuring eye, and for his quarry waits.
The sobered robin, hunger-silent now,
Leeks cedar-berries blue, his autumn cheer;
The squirrel on the shingly shagbark’s bough,
Now saws, now lists with downward eye and ear,
Then drops his nut, and, with a chipping bound,
Whisks to his winding fastness underground;
The clouds like swans drift down the streaming atmosphere.
O’er yon bare knoll the pointed cedar shadows
Drowse on the crisp, gray moss; the ploughman’s call
Creeps, faint as smoke from black, fresh-furrowed meadows;
The single crow a single caw lets fall
And all around me every bush and tree
Says Autumn’s here, and Winter soon will
Who snows his soft, white sleep and silence over all.
The birch, most shy and lady-like of trees,
Her poverty, as best she may, retrieves,
And hints at her foregone gentilities
With some saved relics of her wealth of leaves
The swamp-oak, with his royal purple on,
Glares red as blood across the sinking sun,
As one who proudlier to a falling fortune cleaves
He looks a sachem, in red blanket wrapt,
Who, mid some council of the sad-garbed whites,
Erect and stern, in his own memories lapt,
With distant eye broods over other sights,
Sees the hushed wood the city’s flare replace,
The wounded turf heal o’er the railway’s trace,
And roams the savage Past of his undwindled rights.
The red-oak, softer-grained, yields all for lost,
And, with his crumpled foliage stiff and dry,
After the first betrayal of the frost,
Rebuffs the kiss of the relenting sky;
The chestnuts, lavish of their long-hid gold,
To the faint Summer, beggared now and old,
Pour back the sunshine hoarded ‘neath her favoring eye.
The ash her purple drops forgivingly
And sadly, breaking not the general hush;
The maple-swamps glow like a sunset sea,
Each leaf a ripple with its separate flush;
All round the wood’s edge creeps the skirting blaze;
Of bushes low, as when, on cloudy days,
Ere the rain falls, the cautious farmer burns his brush.
O’er yon low wall, which guards one unkempt zone,
Where vines, and weeds, and scrub-oaks intertwine
Safe from the plough, whose rough, discordant stone
Is massed to one soft gray by lichens fine,
The tangled blackberry, crossed and recrossed, weaves
A prickly network of ensanguined leaves;
Hard by, with coral beads, the prim black-alders shine.
Pillaring with flame this crumbling boundary,
Whose loose blocks topple ‘neath the ploughboy’s foot,
Who, with each sense shut fast except the eye,
Creeps close and scares the jay he hoped to shoot,
The woodbine up the elm’s straight stem aspires.
Coiling it, harmless, with autumnal fires;
In the ivy’s paler blaze the martyr oak stands mute.
Below, the Charles—a stripe of nether sky,
Now hid by rounded apple-trees between,
Whose gaps the misplaced sail sweeps bellying by,
Now flickering golden through a woodland screen,
Then spreading out at his next turn beyond,
A silver circle like an inland pond—
Slips seaward silently through marshes purple and green.
Dear marshes! vain to him the gift of sight
Who cannot in their various incomes share,
From every season drawn, of shade and light,
Who sees in them but levels brown and bare;
Each change of storm or sunshine scatters free
On them its largesse of variety,
For nature with cheap means still works her wonders rare.
In Spring they lie one broad expanse of green,
O’er which the light winds run with glimmering feet;
Here, yellower stripes track out the creek unseen
here, darker growths o’er hidden ditches meet;
And purpler stains show where the blossoms crowd,
As if the silent shadow of a cloud
Hung there becalmed, with the next breath to fleet.
All round, upon the river’s slippery edge,
Witching to deeper calm the drowsy tide,
Whispers and leans the breeze-entangling sedge;
Through emerald glooms the lingering waters slide,
Or, sometimes wavering, throw back the sun,
And the stiff banks in eddies melt and run
Of dimpling light, and with the current seem to glide.
In Summer ’tis a blithesome sight to see,
As step by step, with measured swing, they pass,
The wide-ranked mowers evading to the knee,
Their sharp scythes panting through the thick-set grass
Then, stretched beneath a rick’s shade in a ring,
Their nooning take, while one begins to sing
A stave that droops and dies ‘neath the close sky of brass.
Meanwhile the devil-may-care, the bobolink,
Remembering duty, in mid-quaver stops
Just ere he sweeps O’er rapture’s tremulous brink,
And ‘twixt the winrows most demurely drops,
A decorous bird of business, who provides
For his brown mate and fledglings six besides,
And looks from right to left, a farmer mid his crops.
Another change subdues them in the Fall,
But saddens not, they still show merrier tints,
Though sober russet seems to cover all;
When the first sunshine through their dew-drops glints,
Look how the yellow clearness, streamed across,
Redeems with rarer hues the season’s loss,
As Dawn’s feet there had touched and left their rosy prints.
Or come when sunset gives its freshened zest,
Lean o’er the bridge and let the ruddy thrill,
While the shorn sun swells down the hazy west,
Glow opposite; the marshes drink their fill
And swoon with purple veins, then slowly fade
Through pink to brown, as eastward moves the shade,
Lengthening with stealthy creep, of Simond’s darkening hill.
Later, and yet ere Winter wholly shuts,
Ere through the first dry snow the runner grates,
And the loath cart-wheel screams in slippery ruts,
While the firmer ice the eager boy awaits,
Trying each buckle and strap beside the fire,
And until bedtime- plays with his desire,
Twenty times putting on and off his new-bought skates;—
Then, every morn, the river’s banks shine bright
With smooth plate-armor, treacherous and frail,
By the frost’s clinking hammers forged at night,
“Gainst which the lances of the sun prevail,
Giving a pretty emblem of the day
When guitar arms in light shall melt away,
And states shall move free limbed, loosed from war’s cramping
And now those waterfalls the ebbing river
Twice everyday creates on either side
Tinkle, as through their fresh-sparred grots they shiver
In grass-arched channels to the sun denied;
High flaps in sparkling blue the far-heard crow,
The silvered flats gleam frostily below,
Suddenly drops the gull and breaks the glassy tide.
But, crowned in turn by vying seasons three,
Their winter halo hath a fuller ring;
This glory seems to rest immovably,—
The others were too fleet and vanishing;
When the hid tide is at its highest flow,
O’er marsh and stream one breathless trance of snow
With brooding fulness awes and hushes everything.
The sunshine seems blown off by the bleak wind,
As pale as formal candles lit by day;
Gropes to the sea the river dumb and blind;
The brown ricks, snow-thatched by the storm in play,
Show pearly breakers combing o’er their lee,
White crests as of some just enchanted sea,
Checked in their maddest leap and hanging poised midway.
But when the eastern blow, with rain aslant,
From mid-sea’s prairies green and rolling plains
Drives in his wallowing herds of billows gaunt,
And the roused Charles remembers in his veins
Old Ocean’s blood and snaps his gyves of frost,
That tyrannous silence on the shores is tost
In dreary wreck, and crumbling desolation reigns.
Edgewise or flat, in Druid-like device,
With leaden pools between or gullies bare,
The blocks lie strewn, a bleak Stonehenge of ice;
No life, no sound, to break the grim despair,
Save sullen plunge, as through the sedges stiff
Down crackles riverward some thaw-sapped cliff,
Or ashen the close-wedged fields of ice crunch here and there.
But let me turn from fancy-pictured scenes
To that whose pastoral calm before me lies:
Here nothing harsh or rugged intervenes;
The early evening with her misty dyes
Smooths off the ravelled edges of the nigh,
Relieves the distant with her cooler sky,
And tones the landscape down, and soothes the wearied eyes
There gleams my native village, dear to me,
Though higher change’s waves each day are seen,
Whelming fields famed in boyhood’s history,
Sanding with houses the diminished green;
There, in red brick, which softening time defies,
Stand square and stiff the Muses’ factories;
How with my life knit up is every well-known scene!
Flow on, dear river! not alone you flow
To outward sight, and through your marshes wind;
Fed from the mystic springs of long-ago,
Your twin flows silent through my world of mind
Grow dim, dear marshes, in the evening’s gray!
Before my inner sight ye stretch away,
And will forever, though these fleshly eyes grow blind.
James Russell Lowell
Bradbury understood summer to a boy.
“And then, quite suddenly, summer was over.
He knew it first when walking downtown. Tom grabbed his arm and pointed gasping, at the dimestore window. They stood there unable to move because of the things from another world displayed so neatly, so innocently, so frighteningly, there.
“Pencils, Doug, ten thousand pencils!”
“Oh, my gosh!”
“Nickel tablets, dime tablets, notebooks, erasers, water colors, rulers, compasses, a hundred thousand of them!”
“Don’t look. Maybe it’s just a mirage.”
“No,” moaned Tom in despair. “School. School straight on ahead! Why, why do dime stores show things like that in windows before summer’s even over! Ruin half the vacation!”
― Ray Bradbury, Dandelion Wine
“June dawns, July noons, August evenings over, finished, done, and gone forever with only the sense of it all left here in his head. Now, a whole autumn, a white winter, a cool and greening spring to figure sums and totals of summer past. And if he should forget, the dandelion wine stood in the cellar, numbered huge for each and every day. He would go there often, stare straight into the sun until he could stare no more, then close his eyes and consider the burned spots, the fleeting scars left dancing on his warm eyelids; arranging, rearranging each fire and reflection until the pattern was clear…
So thinking, he slept.
And, sleeping, put an end to Summer, 1928.”
― Ray Bradbury, Dandelion Wine
The yearly ritual continues.
So what to write about when I’ve foresworn speculating about the coming revolution? Well, the only thing to talk about then is what it’s like at ground zero. We’re all witnesses to a seminal moment in American and world history. We get to watch a myth die. The Democrats and the Deep State are cooperating in the murder of the America we grew up in. And they’re doing a thorough job. I’d say that fully 35% of Americans are as disillusioned with this country as it’s possible to be. Probably another 30% are confused and a little scared about the way things seem to be going. And the other 35% are a combination of idiots, wokesters and crooks. And every day is another experiment to see what Madhouse America will teach us.
A continuing theme has been the prevalence of geriatric crooks running our government. Biden and Feinstein have of late been joined by Mush-brain Mitch McConnell. And he’s giving Dementia Joe a run for his money. But whereas Joe just spouts nonsense, Mitch suddenly seizes up like the Tin-Man from the “Wizard of Oz.” When he stands there staring into space I expect him to mumble “oil can” through frozen jaws.
But old crooks are hardly our biggest problem. Truly everywhere we look we can see madness and dysfunction. The litany is endless. But this week I had an epiphany. Laughter is an answer. What I look for is poetic justice. Whether it’s Sanctuary Cities squawking at the cost of housing illegal aliens. Or tribal police manhandling environmental protestors blocking the roads to Burning Man. Or transgendered NGO workers discovering that African and Middle Eastern governments really do want to do very bad things to them if they fly the rainbow flag. Or woke baristas discovering that having their customers robbed and assaulted by homeless crackheads every single day is going to make a coffee shop quite a bit less profitable.
Each of these events has something in common with the others. First off, each provides a healthy dose of schadenfreude. That alone makes them valuable because laughing at our enemy’s misfortunes is priceless. But they also provide a morsel of hope. Because each one showcases some weakness of our enemies based on their adopting some tenet of their philosophy that flies in the face of reality. And it’s this refusal to face reality that contains the seeds of their downfall.
Now whether that downfall is imminent or centuries in the future is the problem. For all I know, illegal aliens may continue flooding the country for several more generations before collapse takes down the USA. In that case my mockery of the complaining city fathers of NYC or Chicago is pretty weak tea. But what certainly is true is the joy I experience when I mock these people. So, whether or not the big picture is changed by my enjoyment I’m positively impacted.
And I think I’ve discovered that readers like these stories too. I think a lot of people are like me. They hate the enemy and take joy in their discomfiture. Some people might say this is petty or even wrong. I disagree. Celebrating their defeats even minor ones is an objective good that should be developed.
So that is why you can expect to see more current events posts that mock our adversaries’ misfortunes. From my point of view this is a useful output for my site. So, let the flames begin.
The First Snowfall
The snow had begun in the gloaming,
And busily all the night
Had been heaping field and highway
With a silence deep and white.
Every pine and fir and hemlock
Wore ermine too dear for an earl,
And the poorest twig on the elm-tree
Was ridged inch deep with pearl.
From sheds new-roofed with Carrara
Came Chanticleer’s muffled crow,
The stiff rails were softened to swan’s-down,
And still fluttered down the snow.
I stood and watched by the window
The noiseless work of the sky,
And the sudden flurries of snow-birds,
Like brown leaves whirling by.
I thought of a mound in sweet Auburn
Where a little headstone stood;
How the flakes were folding it gently,
As did robins the babes in the wood.
Up spoke our own little Mabel,
Saying, ‘Father, who makes it snow?’
And I told of the good All-father
Who cares for us here below.
Again I looked at the snowfall,
And thought of the leaden sky
That arched o’er our first great sorrow,
When that mound was heaped so high.
I remembered the gradual patience
That fell from that cloud like snow,
Flake by flake, healing and hiding
The scar that renewed our woe.
And again to the child I whispered,
‘The snow that husheth all,
Darling, the merciful Father
Alone can make it fall! ‘
Then, with eyes that saw not, I kissed her;
And she, kissing back, could not know
That my kiss was given to her sister,
Folded close under deepening snow.
James Russell Lowell
Hilariously the answer he couldn’t get out was whether he would be running for re-election in 2026. The question should have been “Will it cost less to refurbish you or just scrap you for a replacement robot?” Come on, isn’t there some slightly less decrepit crook who could sell us out in the senate? Please don’t let it be Mitt.
This is getting ridiculous …
Mitch McConnell freezes again while speaking at a press conference 🔥🔥🔥
Who thinks we need age limits for Congress? What would be the maximum age and why?
— Wall Street Silver (@WallStreetSilv) August 30, 2023
Here’s my public service for the day. I’ve been watching this clip for a few days and it never gets old. A heartfelt belly laugh at the stupid and self-important. The Gaia Worshippers.
Stupid hippies are blocking the road to Burning Man to protest, I guess, the other stupid hippies. Then the tribal police bust up the blockade and arrest the stupid hippies. When the cop pulls out his gun and starts manhandling one of the fat stupid hippies, another fat stupid hippie starts screeching that they are non-violent and environmental protestors and, I guess, in her mind therefore, sacrosanct.
But the cop puts his knee in the hippie’s fatty liver and cuffs her. Comedy gold. If only it could be Greta Thunberg!
"30 seconds, send your leader to my vehicle, let's talk, get off the fucken road" – Tribal Ranger announced on the highway leading to #BurningMan festival where climate activists blocked the road. About 37 seconds later a ranger RAMMED through blockade, made arrest at gun point. pic.twitter.com/JUckcr6qoE
— FreedomNews.Tv FNTV (@FreedomNTV) August 28, 2023
For a cap and bells our lives we pay,
Bubbles we earn with a whole soul’s tasking;
‘T is heaven alone that is given away,
‘T is only God may be had for the asking;
No price is set on the lavish summer;
June may be had by the poorest comer.
And what is so rare as a day in June?
Then, if ever, come perfect days;
Then Heaven tries the earth if it be in tune,
And over it softly her warm ear lays:
Whether we look, or whether we listen,
We hear life murmur, or see it glisten;
Every clod feels a stir of might,
An instinct within it that reaches and towers,
And, groping blindly above it for light,
Climbs to a soul in grass and flowers;
The flush of life may well be seen
Thrilling back over hills and valleys;
The cowslip startles in meadows green,
The buttercup catches the sun in its chalice,
And there’s never a leaf nor a blade too mean
To be some happy creature’s palace;
The little bird sits at his door in the sun,
Atilt like a blossom among the leaves,
And lets his illumined being o’errun
With the deluge of summer it receives;
His mate feels the eggs beneath her wings,
And the heart in her dumb breast flutters and sings;
He sings to the wide world, and she to her nest,–
In the nice ear of Nature which song is the best?
Now is the high tide of the year,
And whatever of life hath ebbed away
Comes flooding back, with a ripply cheer,
Into every bare inlet and creek and bay;
Now the heart is so full that a drop overfills it,
We are happy now because God wills it;
No matter how barren the past may have been,
‘T is enough for us now that the leaves are green;
We sit in the warm shade and feel right well
How the sap creeps up and the blossoms swell;
We may shut our eyes, but we cannot help knowing
That skies are clear and grass is growing;
The breeze comes whispering in our ear,
That dandelions are blossoming near,
That maize has sprouted, that streams are flowing,
That the river is bluer than the sky,
That the robin is plastering his house hard by;
And if the breeze kept the good news back,
For other couriers we should not lack,
We could guess it all by yon heifer’s lowing,–
And hark! how clear bold chanticleer,
Warmed with the new wine of the year,
Tells all in his lusty crowing!
James Russell Lowell