Las Vegas, NV
May 20, 2020
Garrison Keillor hits Las Vegas with a new solo show!
April 18, 2020
Garrison Keillor comes to the Rochester Civic Theatre for a night of stories, songs, poetry, and humor. Tickets $50 and up
February 19, 2020
Garrison Keillor with Heather Masse at the Dakota. Night 2 of 2. Tickets $30+
February 18, 2020
Garrison Keillor with Heather Masse at the Dakota. Night 1 of 2. Tickets $30+
by Matthew Arnold
The sea is calm tonight.
The tide is full, the moon lies fair
Upon the straits; on the French coast the light
Gleams and is gone; the cliffs of England stand,
Glimmering and vast, out in the tranquil bay.
Come to the window, sweet is the night-air!
Only, from the long line of spray
Where the sea meets the moon-blanched land,
Listen! you hear the grating roar
Of pebbles which the waves draw back, and fling,
At their return, up the high strand,
Begin, and cease, and then again begin,
With tremulous cadence slow, and bring
The eternal note of sadness in.
Sophocles long ago
Heard it on the Ægean, and it brought
Into his mind the turbid ebb and flow
Of human misery; we
Find also in the sound a thought,
Hearing it by this distant northern sea.
The Sea of Faith
Was once, too, at the full, and round earth’s shore
Lay like the folds of a bright girdle furled.
But now I only hear
Its melancholy, long, withdrawing roar,
Retreating, to the breath
Of the night-wind, down the vast edges drear
And naked shingles of the world.
Ah, love, let us be true
To one another! for the world, which seems
To lie before us like a land of dreams,
So various, so beautiful, so new,
Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,
Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;
And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night.
“Dover Beach” by Matthew Arnold. Public domain. (buy now)
On this day in 1917 the United States officially entered World War I. President Woodrow Wilson tried to keep the U.S. out of the war, even after a German U-boat sunk the passenger ship Lusitania, until British intelligence intercepted a secret German communication to Mexico. Apparently Germany had promised Mexico that they could have the U.S. if Mexico would support the German cause.
It’s the birthday of country music singer Merle Haggard, born near Bakersfield, California (1937). It was the height of the Depression, and his parents had moved from Oklahoma to California to look for work. Haggard grew up in Oildale, a makeshift town of migrant workers on the outskirts of Bakersfield, living in a boxcar that his family had converted into a house.
He inherited his musical talent from his father, who had played fiddle and guitar but given it up before his son was born. Haggard’s father died when he was nine years old, and he began to rebel: hopping freight trains, skipping school, and stealing things. Around the same time he taught himself guitar by listening to records. He began to earn some money from his music, but throughout his teen years he was in and out of prison. In 1958 he attempted to escape from a county jail and ended up in San Quentin Prison. He and another inmate there, a man nicknamed Rabbit, planned out an escape, but in the end Rabbit told Haggard not to risk it because he had a chance to make a living from his music. Rabbit ended up caught and executed, and Haggard decided it was time to get his life back on track.
He joined the prison band, and was further inspired to pursue a music career after Johnny Cash came and played a concert at San Quentin. Haggard said, “He had the right attitude: he chewed gum, looked arrogant and flipped the bird to the guards — he did everything the prisoners wanted to do. He was a mean mother from the South who was there because he loved us.” Haggard got out of prison and went on to become a great singer and songwriter with 38 No. 1 hits and 250 original songs, including “Mama Tried,” “Hungry Eyes,” “Okie from Muskogee,” “Branded Man,” and “Workin’ Man Blues.”
Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®