Wednesday, September 16, 2015

I Love This Cultured Hell

You pass three large feed lots coming in from, or leaving out of, the north end of town, and there’s another feed lot on the south end.

He’s dressed for success in camou slacks, black work boots, a green and brown houndstooth sports coat, a USA flag do rag on his head.  He’s walking her to the school bus stop.  He’s her dad, and he’s holding her hand, and she loves him and is proud of him.

I remember the raging of AIDS in the late 1980’s.  I remember the healing services at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Seattle, mid-week, at night.  Men gathered, praying.

The school bus goes up the hill and the road curves left carrying it out of sight behind a rise. Inside the bus, the kids blaze in thrilling English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, French, Tagalog, German, Armenian, Russian, Japanese, Farsi, Khmer, Punjabi, Arabic, Hmong, Navajo.

I am awed, entertained and inspired, on a daily basis, by the quality of so much of the literary art I see on the Internet and in the journals (paper or electronic); new writers, international scope, artistic intrepidity. But…why do so many adepts of new media (mis)use it to perpetuate and valorize memes that went out in granddad's time? 

Action, guey, action!

(The title is borrowed from the poem America by Claude McKay.)

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