Thursday, November 16, 2017

CAUGHT READING (PART ONE)

Dorothy Dandridge & Harry Belefonte reading a script 1950s (I had a crush on both of them as a kid, though I only realized it with Belefonte in retrospect)
Marilyn Monroe (had a crush on her too) reading Arthur Miller 1950s
Ken Wessels in my apartment in Iowa City c. 1967
the late poet Ralph Dickey either in Iowa City or San Francisco late 1960s
the late poet Steve Shrader in San Francisco 1969
poets Simon Schuchat standing, the late Ray DiPalma leaning and Paula Novotnak reading at Trinity College in Washingtong DC 1969
shots of the weekly poetry reading series Mass Transit at The Community Book Store in DC with me reading top far left, Terence Winch reading far right middle row and Bernard Welt reading far right at bottom, DC c. 1972
Washington Post article about the Mass Transit readings and Some Of Us Press, which came out of them, with photo of poets Terence Winch, me & the late Ed Cox, DC c. 1972
the late poet, and my first wife, mother of my two oldest children, at an art opening of individually designed envelopes for the poetry mag Salt Lick, published by the late Jim Haining,  Baltimore c. 1972 
Terence Winch reading in DC c. 1972
cover of second edition of ROCKY DIES YELLOW originally published by Blue Wind Press in 1975

Sunday, November 12, 2017

THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES

THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES came out when I was four. I saw it at our local movie theater with my older sisters, who were forced to drag me along with them on Sunday afternoons after we had "the big dinner" and my father took his weekly nap and us three youngest were sent to the flickers.

I have seen it many many times since, and though I don't make many lists since the brain operation ended that lifelong compulsion, this movie was always one of my top ten and in recent years' viewings I've decided it's my favorite movie of all.

Watching it each year, on its annual screening on TCM around Veterans Day, despite some dated bits in some scenes, this story of three World War Two veterans returning home after the war has only grown more relevant and prescient and fulfilling.

The female leads especially impress. Mryna Loy's performance should be the template for anyone ever wanting to act in a movie. She can play poignancy, romance, wisdom, comedy, and more with only the turn of a shoulder, or pause in a step, or slight upturn of an eye. For me Loy is the quintessence of screen acting skill.

And Theresa Wright, from my home town but graduated and gone before I was born, is always a delight to watch on screen, her emotional range vast as well. Virginia Mayo, playing the bad girl, as she often did, gives maybe her best performance too. And the male leads keep up with them and anchor the story with their postwar inner demons.

I could go on, but suffice it to say THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES is a classic Hollywood masterpiece that still lives up to its original worthiness.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Friday, November 10, 2017

AS I SEE IT

One of the many differences between Liberal Democrats and Conservative Republicans is that when we saw that the Viet Nam War was wrong we went against our party's leader and then president LBJ, but when they realized Bush Junior, their then president, had misled us into a war they mostly continued to support it (and mostly still do for that matter), or when some Hollywood bigwig donater to liberal and Democratic causes gets outed as a sexual assaulter we support their being kicked out of their own companies and their upcoming projects being aborted...while the other side runs to the defense of their offenders, or if the offenders are forced, for corporate reasons, into early retirement (a la Ailes and O'Reilly) they're given gigantic going away prizes in the millions...just a thought...