Oh boy. Whitman,
of course. Rimbaud. Wilfred Owen.
who is a somber Chagall
& more; my inimitable
Quixote is the most hilarious novel!) I cannot do without my
& Solzhenitsyn (Gulag Archipelago,
must-read) Li Po,
("Balade" that begins 'Hyde, Absolon') Shelley, Tennyson,
(see his "Ulysses" or at
this didactic point knock me over the head & accuse me of
trying to give a second-year college class) Blake, John Donne
(begin with 'The Good
Morrow' if unfamiliar)(can't help myself) Rilke
again & again (if you come away
from here with nothing else become acquainted with (the Stephen
Mitchell translation is the one I love) The Duino Elegies
Sonnets to Orpheus
& also Soren Kierkegaard's
especially the section entitled A Panagyric on
Abraham (I'm an evangelist, after all) & a lot of more
contemporary poets like Czeslaw Milosz, Lorca, Vallejo, Neruda, Dylan Thomas, Hart Crane
(maybe my favorite,
next to Auden,
("In Praise of Limestone." "Lullaby." "This Lunar Beauty.") No!
(The Battlefield Where the Moon Says I Love You)
And so does
Wright!!!! D.H. Lawrence. Passolini,
(he's not just a
great film-maker!) James Dickey, Delmore Schwartz,
beloved Randall Jarell, William
Carlos Williams, Robert Hass, Derek Walcott, Sharon Olds,
Gilbert, Denise Levertov,John Logan,
Automobile," for starters) & all those I haven't named &
love as well as any here, the list can be exhaustive so I'll
Blindness. There may be no more heart-breaking poem.
But I can't leave them without mentioning my old beautiful
teenage nights he slept by me... with the smell of honeysuckle
The Sound & the Fury, The Light in August...
World. One Hundred Years of
Solitude. All Quiet on the
What I've read some of & would like to read more: Thomas Pynchon
(loved the first 1/2 of "V"
until I gave it to a stranger on a
train (all very innocent, I assure you--- unfortunately!--- ah!
youth, wasted on the young---) & would like to get to Gravity's
The Bible. All of James Joyce!
unbearably lovely to have read all of him... & of course ye
olde Eternal light "Willy the Shake" (an appellation I stole from
some graduate student poet, forgive me, both of you) more:
"& when the translation of Hegel will be finished, God knows
what the result will be!"
By the way--- also stole something else from Flaubert's own list of
recommendations: his favorite line of Hugo's:
"the shadow was nuptial,
august, and solemn." I'm a sucker for atmosphere! O & Ayn Rand.
must get to Atlas Shrugged.
Hiroshima, Mon Amour,
anytime. Harold & Maude!
Burnt by the
Sun. Bridge on the River
Anything by Fassbinder, Bergman, Tarkofsky
'Solaris.') Raging Bull.
(The soundtrack's a
favorite.) Hillary & Jackie.
version! Wings of Desire. Tie Me Up,
Tie Me Down.
(In fact, all things Almodovar!) Fearless. The Last Picture Show.
Tous Les Matins Du Monde--- All the Mornings of the World.
soundtrack (of Mr. de Sainte Colombe
will stay with you all your life...) La Strada.
All of Peter Greenaway,
(Particularly 'The Architect's Contract.') Huston's Treasure
of the Sierra Madre. Casablanca. Braveheart.
All classic sci-fi &
to the Planet of Prehistoric Women, Teenagers from Outer
Space, Santa Claus
Conquers the Martians, Beast with a Million
Eyes, The Day the Earth
Stood Still, Nosferatu, Invasion of the
etc,etc. All classics, for that matter!
in the Rain! On the Beach! The Big Country!
Good, the Bad, & the Ugly! The Elephant Man!
Christsakes every movie I've ever seen! Oh, if I could make my own
film, I'd make my own film! The swans in bottle-green tubs on
Pelican Island, The Holocaust Memorial, Tarkofskian texture &
rain, all of Miami Beach as set. Breathless. Lovers Under a Bridge.
Darling Clementine. La Strada. Cinema Paradiso--
is mine!" & all those kisses...) Ferris Bueller's Day
Off. Five Easy Pieces. 2001: A Space
Odyssey. Young Frankenstein!
O Brother Where Art
Runner. Twelve O'Clock High.
Apocalypse Now, Redux.
West Was Won. The Last King of
Music, oh music!
My dear sweet Chopin! Beethoven.
(Emerson String Quartet.)
Wa Do Dem? Eek-a-Mouse. Elvis,
from "The Louisiana Hayride
Archives" esp. Volume 1, & with love to Arthur Crudupp! Coltrane,
in particular "You Ought To Be With Me" "Sha-la-la-la"
& "Belle..." Chet Baker---
Valentine," "Everytime we say Goodbye" Billy Holiday---
By!" (especially the early stuff, it's all springtime & birds!)
The Platters "Smoke Gets in Your
Eyes." The Allman Brothers!
be my all-time love. Hank Williams Sr.!
Your Own Business!") Motzart's
"Requiem." Anything by
Late Beethoven. John Lee Hooker,
(what's that song called where he sings "I woke up
this morning, & all I had was gone"?)Ella Fitzgerald,
all I can
say is WOW! Skip
("Cherry Ball!") Blind Willie Johnson,
("What is the Soul of a Man?") all the old masters. Django
Limestone Blues. Thelonious Monk.
"Ugly Beauty.") Bob
(Everything of course but especially "My Back Pages," "I
Threw It all Away," "Lay Lady Lay.") And without guilt: Golden
Oldies of the 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's, 60's, (especially Jimi Hendrix,
("Little Miss Lover," "Golden Rose.") Jim Morrison,
"Hyacinth House.") Janis Joplin
& Bobbie McGee.") 70's. All Beatles. John Lennon,
"Love.") Strangely, I'm not much for the 80's... or 90's... I used
to listen to the radio all the time now I don't know what the hell
is going on. Any suggestions appreciated! I go to my Peggy Lee
or Etta James...
Want a) "Sunday Kind of Love" "My Heart Cried" Brahms.
More than especially
Brahms. Leonard Cohen---
"Stir It Up." I grew up in The Bahamas & woke up
many mornings to my mother playing "You better lively up yourself,
& don't be no drag!..." And we sang Cat Stevens'
"Morning Has Broken"
in the quad before prayers, & held dances to Disco (ughh!)
"Shake Your Groove Thing, shake your groove thing, Yeah, Yeah! Show
'em how to do it now!" Well. Some tastes have changed & some
haven't. It's a comfort, somehow. Measures of growth & funny
things combine "to bind us to the earth" (Keats' "A Thing of Beauty
is a Joy Forever" from Endymion?) I keep thinking lately how "the
trees that surround the temple have become dear as the temple's
self" (a paraphrase) when I consider global warming... a bit out of
place here but not really, I remember now how the land gives rise
Story-book Story, song from the Princess Bride, my mom's favorite
Whew! Food! It's easier to write about food when you're hungry, now
I've a belly full of coffee & beer so I'll make it short (that
reminds me of another of my favorite movies: The Grapes of Wrath.
(AND I love Steinbeck,
of course!) Let's see:
French eggs! (Saute leeks, scramble, add healthy dollops of
creamcheese near end.) Fresh-squeezed orange juice (champagne's not
bad either) all things grilled outdoors: salmon with fresh dill,
skirt-steak juicy & crispy at the same time (as if I could
still emulate The Lake Poets & all swami's & cover the
Earth on foot to stop & make a fire of tasty tid-bits---
peripatetic craving soul that I am) mammoth garlic on the grill,
orange & yellow peppers from Holland on the grill, steaks of
all kinds in plenty of worcestershire sauce, fresh cracked pepper
& sea-salt, with red, full-bodied, buttery wines--- any kind of
fish we spent all day fishing for on the grill (God forgive me)
cheeseburgers on the grill! Mashed potatoes & cobs of corn
& real butter & green beans! Popcorn! Cotton Candy! Filet
Mignon in 'a' bernaise sauce! Lobsters & King Crab claws!
Smoked Gouda & French bread, grapes like globes & Pesto on
any kind of pasta, hot or cold! Every pizza known to woman! Red
Thai curry, green Thai curry, blue cheese & Feta &
Gorgonzola, French crepes with English Golden Syrup & triple X
confectioner's sugar, Belgian waffles with bananas &
strawberries, fresh whipcream & pure maple syrup, all berries,
nuts, fried chicken, Salisbury steak, potatoes baked in the oven
for an hour & more with sourcream, gourmet Mexican &
ice-cold Lagers, clam chowder & yellow-block-cheese sandwiches
on thick slices of broiled home-made bread, bacon, spinach, all
salads! The sweet grief of liver & onions! Tuna & rice!
Home-made potato soup (diced potatoes & onions boiled in water,
butter, can of cream, salt & pepper to taste) biscuits &
poor man's gravy, Captain Crunch, spaghetti on the second day with
garlic bread & milk, Wild Turkey on the rocks, & last but
not least, beautiful ice-water!