6.0469 Inaugural Poems (1/28)

Mon, 1 Feb 1993 12:52:08 EST

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 6, No. 0469. Monday, 1 Feb 1993.

Date: Thu, 28 Jan 93 23:02 PST
Subject: Re: 6.0463 Further Responses on Angelou's Inaugural Poem (3/44)

Ms P thinks we dont know how to spell Arkansas in California, in this
city of many Okies and Arkies. Snide will get you nowhere; rap on he
knuckles from a wouldbe schoolmarm? Yes'm, as Huck Finn might have
replied. We knows how the word is spilt. Frost of course "said' his
poem, "The Gift Outright," and if one saw that on the tv one realized
the old man was a bit flustered, what with the light and stiff cold
breeze, trying and trying to get his papers visible, until he resolved
on the better work, as it turned out. I like the suggestion about The
Kennedy's August pretension, really I do: the parallel is neat, the son
of the gangster, Joe, the son who seems to have bought that extra 50,
000 or so votes that poor Tricky Dickie didnt protest, that purchase of
W Virginia in the primary, etc. Wonderful and true to form for the
Kennedy clan. I might have recalled a better kitsch version of the
same sort of thing, very popular pseudo-folk ish stuff from WW II, "The
Ballad for Americans," "the house that I live in, et c." a Norman Corwin
sort of effusion, perhaps actually by him, no, it couldnt be, my friend
has better taste, some tinpan alley character (dont make type caps, Ms
Parrott, please, it's late). One might have gone through some of the
miserable text to show in detail its mawkish horrors of incompetence, but
really. As it happened, I was lecturing on Frost the week before the
Inauguration, and that helped me into shock when the Angelou thing
actually happened. We are headed for a slough of despond, starting
with the new NEH appointment. Helas! But, it will be interesting in
its own tawdry way. Barbra Streisand & Co, will set our cultural
standards, since they are after all, our elite. Easy to defend them
from Toronto; a bit harder here in LALA land. Heigh Ho, and away we go.
But let us be friends, all of us here on this list of alert folks. JK