Zsa Zsa, Not Dick

This isn’t fair.  First Mitch Miller, now this?

Meanwhile Dick ticks along … er .. well, actually I guess not.  He hums along.  Or something equally unnatural.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfT_IyTSK1s

Stay tuned tomorrow as I explicate (briefly) how Dick’s heart disease became America’s heartlessness for some 30 years.  It’ll be a damn tour de force!

But for now (as I run out the door) … from the Writer’s Almanac this morning … I love this one!

Midwest

by Stephen Dunn

After the paintings
of David Ahlsted

We have lived in this town,
have disappeared
on this prairie. The church

always was smaller
than the grain elevator,
though we pretended otherwise.
The houses were similar

because few of us wanted
to be different
or estranged. And the sky

would never forgive us,
no matter how many times
we guessed upwards
in the dark.

The sky was the prairie’s
double, immense,
kaleidoscopic, cold.

The town was where
and how we huddled
against such forces,
and the old abandoned

pickup on the edge
of town was how we knew
we had gone too far,
or had returned.

People? Now we can see them,
invisible in their houses
or in their stores.

Except for one man
lounging on his porch,
they are part of the buildings,

they have determined
every stubborn shape, the size
of each room. The trailer home
with the broken window

is somebody’s life.
One thing always is
more important than another,

this empty street, this vanishing
point. The good eye knows
no democracy. Shadows follow

sunlight as they should,
as none of us can prevent.
Everything is conspicuous
and is not.

“Midwest” by Stephen Dunn, from Landscape at the End of the Century. © W.W. Norton, 1991. Reprinted with permission. (buy now)

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