The lasting monument for the last day of Poetry Month

The Latin poet Horace wrote this as the final poem of the third book of his Odes. (He later published a fourth book. We had one of those poems earlier.) Horace’s poetry has been the inspiration for poets through the ages. Dante, Dryden, Housman, Yeats and Auden all cribbed from him. He was the one […]

Uncle Jumbo: The Proverbial Turd In The Punchbowl

I had an incredible time at the ballpark tonight –and, yes, I’m in a good enough mood that I’m going to go ahead and refer to the Metrodome as a ballpark. It was a strange and amazing game, and a seriously gutty, inspired, and lucky performance by Carlos Silva. There was a point in the […]

Great Blurbs From Book Jacket History, Part One, And Other Miscellaneous Nonsense

–The day of Samuel Beckett’s Funeral. December 26, 1989. Montparnasse Cemetery, Paris. The Spam hat was my own humble offering. This is just the book to give your sister if she’s a loud, dirty, boozy girl. –Dylan Thomas’s blurb on the front dustwrapper of the 1966 first American edition of Flann O’Brien’s At Swim-Two-Birds (Walker […]

Rage

Forgive the late entry today. I was busy with the day job. I had the pleasure of meeting Betsy Brown last week. She’s a real poet, and I tried to get her to stay for another glass of wine and recite a bit for me, but she had to go. She graciously sent this along […]

There's A Cancer In Twins Territory, And Its Name Is Brad Zellar

Back in the day –this was in 1987– I used to have this Nancy and Sluggo tee-shirt that I believed was some sort of magic talisman for the Twins. Whenever I wore it to a game the Twins won, and somehow I figured out, or thought I figured out, that when I didn’t wear it […]

Whistle While You Work

It is certainly true that music magazines remain committed to music criticism without a lot of strong evidence that anyone is all that interested anymore. But I couldn’t let Pete Carbonara’s dismissive comments about our mutual former employer go unanswered. Someone needs to defend Spin’s honor, I think. First, no one expects Spin to be […]

The Best of the Best

It would be a bit silly to come near the end of this month of poems without hearing a bit from the Bard. Here is Sonnet 116; a little bit from Antony and Cleopatra that once struck me hard; and the famous speech from Henry V that lent title to a damn good book about […]

Maybe This Year It's Not A Tease

It’s not really a surprise to me, but Jacque Jones has quietly become a better player –certainly a better hitter, and I’d argue a better all-around player– than Torii Hunter. Jones is as competitive and driven as Hunter is easy going, and he works as hard as anybody on the team to get better. He […]

It's My Ball, And The Game is Over!

You know it’s a slow week in news when the journalists are arguing amongst themselves about the cheekiness of interns. But that should not distract us from slightly less yawn-inducing progress of the Ship of State in its inexorable approach to the iceberg of international irrelevance. The good senator and Viagra spokesman Bob Dole writes […]

Sentience and sensuality

This one was suggested by a friend of mine who happens to be a Catholic priest. It seems at first a bit voluptuous for a priest’s taste, but as a friend once said, “They can think about it, they just can’t do it.” But, come down to the last stanzas and see the reconciliation of […]