A Prairie Home Companion’s 50th Anniversary Tour comes to Akron, OH with Heather Masse, Christine DiGiallonardo, Rich Dworsky, Sue Scott, Fred Newman and Tim Russell.
New Philadelphia, OH
Garrison Keillor brings his solo show to Kent State University. Poetry, Limericks, Sing-Along and the News from Lake Wobegon.
A Prairie Home Companion’s 50th Anniversary Tour comes to the Grand 1894 Opera House in Galveston, TX with our favorite regulars, Rich Dworsky, Sue Scott, Tim Russell and Fred Newman. Additional guests to be announced.
A Prairie Home Companion’s 50th Anniversary Tour comes to the McCain Auditorium in Manhattan, Kansas with our favorite regulars, Rich Dworsky, Sue Scott, Tim Russell and Fred Newman. Additional guests to be announced.
A Prairie Home Companion’s 50th Anniversary Tour comes to Nashville with Heather Masse, Christine DiGiallonardo, Rich Dworsky, Sam Bush, Stuart Duncan, Sue Scott, Fred Newman and Tim Russell.
IT’S WEDNESDAY, NOT THURSDAY
by Kim Dower
Wake up thinking it’s trash day
so I move the cans out to the front
even though it’s pouring. Back in,
make extra strong coffee,
read the story in the paper
about the 400-pound bear they
captured in La Crescenta, he strolled down
the mountain, lured by the scent
of meatballs from Costco,
made several trips sensing the danger
but those of us who’ve had them can agree
those meatballs from Costco are worth
getting pierced by tranquilizer darts.
“Like moving a water bed without a frame,”
claimed the State Fish and Game officials
who loaded him into the truck.
I hope a princess kisses him, he wakes up
human, marries, lives happily ever after
in a home at the edge of a forest
where a bear will stray from the mountain,
raid his garbage, and the ex-bear, father of two,
will keep buckets of chilled meatballs in every room
of his sprawling ranch-style home.
Kim Dower, “It’s Wednesday, Not Thursday” from Last Train To The Missing Planet.” Copyright © 2016 Red Hen Press. (buy now)
It’s the birthday of the children’s author and illustrator Beatrix Potter, (books by this author) born Helen Beatrix Potter in London, England (1866). She’s the author of The Tale of Peter Rabbit (1902), The Tale of Squirrel Nutkin (1903), The Tale of Benjamin Bunny (1904), and The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck (1908).
It’s the birthday of the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins (books by this author), born in Stratford, England (1844). He grew up Anglican, but not only did he convert to Catholicism, he decided to become a priest and he went to rural Wales to study for his ordination, where he loved the landscape and the simplicity of life. It was there that he wrote poems like “God’s Grandeur” and “The Windhover.”
The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
It’s the birthday of the philosopher Karl Popper (books by this author), born in Vienna (1902). His dad was a lawyer who loved the classics and philosophy and his mom taught him to love music, and Popper said that his childhood was “decidedly bookish.” He went to school at the University of Vienna and while he was there Albert Einstein came to give a lecture and Karl Popper was awed by the scientist. He started thinking about the way Einstein’s theories worked and realized that what made them legitimate scientific theories was that they were concrete enough that it would have been possible to prove that they were false, whereas many social scientists and political theorists (like Marx and Freud) presented theories that were impossible to actually prove were not true. So he wrote The Logic of Scientific Discovery (1934) and argued that the closest a scientist can get to proving that his or her theory is true is by failing to find evidence that it is false.
He said, “It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood.”
It’s the birthday of children’s author Natalie Babbitt (books by this author), born on this day in Dayton, Ohio (1932). She grew up during the Great Depression and her family moved around from town to town in Ohio. As a kid she loved reading fairy tales and myths, but once she found an illustrated copy of Alice in Wonderland all she wanted to do was become a children’s book illustrator. So she studied drawing at the Laurel School for Girls in Cleveland and then at Smith College. But she got married and her husband was a college president and so Babbitt spent her time raising their three children and going to all kinds of social events that were expected of a president’s wife. Then her husband wrote a children’s story called The Forty-Ninth Magician and Babbitt illustrated it. It was a successful book. But the stress of work was too much for her husband and he gave up writing, so Babbitt decided that if she was going to illustrate books she would have to write them herself.
Her first novel for children was The Search for Delicious (1969) about a young man who is sent on a quest to save the kingdom by finding the definition of the word “delicious.” She wrote several more books, and then her most famous, Tuck Everlasting (1975), the story of Winnie Foster who leaves her sheltered home and meets the Tuck family, a family who has discovered the secret of immortality and realized that it isn’t as perfect as it sounds. Harper’s Magazine said that Tuck Everlasting was “probably the best work of our best children’s novelist.”
It’s the birthday of Alice Duer Miller (books by this author), born in New York City (1874). In 1940 she published The White Cliffs, a novel in verse. It’s the story of an American girl who goes on vacation to London and falls in love with a young English man and they get married. Then he goes off to fight in World War I and is killed. She is pregnant, gives birth to a son, and stays in England to raise him there. At the end of the book England enters World War II and she is scared that her now-grown son will be killed in battle just like her husband. But she wants him to fight for the country he loves, even though her heart is still in America. The White Cliffs was dramatic and epic, and it was incredibly popular in both England and America, selling more than 1 million copies and convincing a lot of Americans that the country should join World War II.
And it’s the birthday of the poet John Ashbery (books by this author), born in Rochester, New York (1927). His father was a fruit farmer and his mother a high school biology teacher and neither of them was very interested in literature. But his grandfather lived nearby and had a big library and the boy would spend hours in there reading everything he could. He wrote his first poem at age eight, with the lines: “The tall haystacks are great sugar mounds/ These are the fairies’ camping ground.” He said that was just about the last poem he ever wrote that rhymed and was so straightforward. When he was in high school he published poems in Poetry magazine, and since then he has written many books of poetry and he is considered one of the most important poets in America. He said, “There is the view that poetry should improve your life. I think people confuse it with the Salvation Army.”
Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®