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Squantus
14 February 2010 @ 10:49 am
I thought I would give this a repost in honor of the day.... enjoy

Valentine’s Day! Hallmark Holiday
Or
Saintly Conspiracy?

Everyone has conspiracy theories. I figured one having to do with Valentine’s Day would be timely.

It is typically thought that greeting cards are a recent development, but it is TRUE that there were forms of greeting cards dating back to the 2nd century. In 150, it was sommon in parts of Syria and Asia Minor to have cards exchanged among the steadily declining group of the followers of some various extinct Persian religious groups. Cards had to be exchanged in secret because of the political problems between Rome and Persia during this time. Roman Governors, particularly in Caesarea, were keenly aware of Persian plots and were always on the lookout for their activities.

Much like the early Christians carved or painted various icons and images on walls, these underground Persians painted the same symbols contained in their cards, on the halls of their homes and meeting areas. These signs, including a heart with an arrow and other now familiar symbols of this season were at the time brutal tallies of assassinations and other nefarious deeds.

As late as 350, these signs or “Hall Marks” continued to be discovered in and around Thessalonica, Constantinople, and even in Egypt and Roman Africa. A great superstition developed in Alexandria where St. Augustine held sway, and he began to make attempts to create a Christian myth surrounding these symbols. It is little known but, after writing his famous “City on the Hill”, he wrote “In Reginum Valentinum” which spoke of the religious conversion of St. Valentine by the divine appearance of Hall Marks. This treatise also fully finished his little known trilogy on love and faith and thus, contained much of the modern association for these symbols and their association with lovers.

A “Hall Mark Card” company was formed in Palarmo by the Pope, which was later moved to Venice. The church, for a time, encouraged the tradition of passing Hall Mark cards, especially on holy days and feast days. The tradition of passing these cards of the day of St. Valentine became a huge fad during the years following the last change of millennium. The Medici family controlled the company until 1430 when the company passed into the hands of the Holy Roman Emperor, and from that family eventually to Charles I, Holy Roman Emperor (who was also King Carlos’ V of Spain, grandson of Isabelle and Ferdinand). In 1517 this company opened in Panama to supply the converts to Christianity in the New World, and later moved to Kansas City where it continues to operate to this day.... As Hallmark Greetings.....


So….a modern “made up” holiday? Or an ancient tradition? YOU be the judge.


The above MAY contain some factual errors! In fact, the above may be ALL factual errors! I don’t know why I should have a disclaimer….but GOOD LORD you people sometimes just take me too seriously.
 
 
Current Location: home
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Squantus
26 January 2010 @ 08:44 pm
Hi all
Its been another while hasn't it. I am floating along waiting to be struck by inspiration or a bus. I don't know what will come first. I have so many partial poems that I am beginning to think that I will never put pen to paper again. I am cooking a lot more. Maybe I'll lay down some recipes. I had Zilla's book group over Saturday and made a Chorizo based fish chowder which was most excellent. Odd mix of flavors but wonderful.

I'm beginning to come into that turn of maturity when I realize that I will never accomplish anything of note. That runs smack into some of my ambitious New Years resolutions. Maybe I'll get some inspiration out of that.

Just touching base.
Love you all
-jd
 
 
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Squantus
08 January 2010 @ 11:11 am
I have some time to post. Of course I could make time. I spend a lot of time in facebook keeping up with their silly time wasting games. Well, I think recreation isn't a terrible thing, given the work ethic I grew up with as measured by the guilt I feel when I'm "wasting time".

I'm still looking for a muse. I have New Years resolution number 1 which is to get really good at writing and guitar, and the writing part has been a bit underinspired for the past year. Muses are funny things. Like the dragon of my unpublished story, they have a Muse agenda, a Muse purpose and a Muse timetable that are unrelated to anything that we actually want. If you want to try out as my Muse, I am taking applications. The job entails sending creative thoughts my way on a periodic basis. I'll publish any resulting poems, dogeral or drivel here.

To my knowledge, people are affected by Muses, some for a lifetime, some leave abruptly, and they never proactivly seek a new one if the old one leaves. There are tons of stories of one hit wonders, authors who opt out and bitter folk who spend their olden days revising their last best thought. New Years Resolution number 3 is that everything is coming my way, I should be positive and keep open to possibilities. The way I see it, muses look for people to inspire and the least I can do is meet one half way.

Or is this just the rantings of someone who has time on their hands?
Love you all
-jd
 
 
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Squantus
05 January 2010 @ 03:00 pm
I'm in class at the end of the day. Yesterday they made me want to kill them and quit teaching. Today they are being very good. Go figure. It's like babies I suppose, they cry and squall until you can't stand it then they do something so precious that you wouldn't trade them for all the tea in China. Go figger

Love you all
-jd
 
 
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Current Mood: chipperchipper
Current Music: the sounds of talking middle schoolers
 
 
 
Squantus
01 January 2010 @ 01:41 pm
Ok the general idea of this came from a teacher friend who wrote something with these ideas on it, but the poem just wasn't good. Wasn't even readable. Believe me this only stole the idea of a flea dance on a dog. The rest is mine. I am giving this poem to her, hoping it doesn't insult her. She is really a good talented dedicated teacher.

Now Gentle readers, I want your opinion. Hoping this is a fun thing to read to start the new year. Enjoy....

Bugaboo Redux Opus 2

The Bugaboo Ball yes the Bugaboo Ball
Nothing can top the Bugaboo Ball
Nothing can top it, nothing at all
That great flea dance
That chance for romance
That time to shake your pants
At the Bugaboo Ball
At the Bugaboo Ball

Now the Bugaboo Ball is a jamboree
That is very well known to every flea
And every tick that tormented a dog
Would scurry and scuttle out of a bog
And every bug from as far as you’d see
Wished that they could be the flea
That would shake their pants
And win that dance
At the Bugaboo Ball

Now the legend goes that the greatest Ball
Wasn’t the annual soirée in the Fall
But was the fabulous one they say
That fell on the warmest day in May
The day they said Miss Willie Mae Flea
Made her appearance at the jamboree
And all of the gentlemen shook their pants
At what they would call the “Earthquake Dance”
At the Bugaboo Ball

Evening fell on the site of the rite
That would be the place where they danced that night
And the first to arrive to set the scene
Was Mayor Big Jim McFly McFlea
Then Butcher Bob Bug would prepare the grub
With his cleaver that had the gold bug nub
Then the crowd started in as the lights settled low
The came in fast and they sauntered in slow
At the Bugaboo Ball

Young Jimmy Flea was a dandy of a bug
He’s practiced all month just to get a hug
Which was due to the winner of the big bug dance
Awarded to the bug who could shake their pants
From the queen bug of the jamboree
The beautiful, glamorous Willie Mae Flea
The flea that had the golden dress
And amply filled her rhinestone vest
At the Bugaboo Ball

Young Jimmy thought he had a plan
But so did that scoundrel “Flim Flam Sam”
The flea that wore the velvet hat
That lived on the head of an ally cat
And there was “Slickee Boy Bill” who claimed the title
Of Fleatown’s genuine “Matinee Idol”
And a ton of other fleas who would cut the rug
To get themselves a sample of a Willie Mae Hug
At the Bugaboo Ball

At the table of food Butcher Bob gave a show
With his gold nub’d cleaver for the folks below
And the mayor’s pronouncement made everyone wince
But he announced that the dancing should now commence
Then a hush and everyone squealed with glee
At the glamorous arrival of Willie Mae Flea
With a golden gown you could see from afar
And a vest that twinkled like an evening star
At the Bugaboo Ball

The music started when “Musical Sam”
Waved his baton at the “Fleatown Jazz Band”
The dancers, well, they were ready to go
And everyone applauded as they started the show
They shimmied to the left and they shimmied to the right
They backed into the dark, then shimmied to the light
Young Jimmy flea looked over to see
That looking right at him was Willie Mae Flea
At the Bugaboo Ball

The dancing had the dance floor starting to bounce
Jimmy was giving it every ounce
The first to drop was “Slickee Boy Bill”
He had the idol looks but not the will
He settled in with pretty Eliza Flea
And as they left she told the crowd “He’ll marry me”
Then “Flim Flam Sam” tried a dirty prank
But security gave his collar a yank
At the Bugaboo Ball

Still giving his all was Young Jimmy Flea
And eyeing him now for all to see
Willie Mae sighed as he shook his pants
And did the impossible “Shimmie Flea Dance”
He shimmied to the left and he shimmied to the right
He backed into the dark, then shimmied to the light
He twisted around like falling off a log
And the dance floor was jumping like a startled frog
At the Bugaboo Ball

Now there was something that they didn’t see
It wasn’t real apparent to the average flea
While Young Jimmie Flea hopped and shook his pants
And did the impossible “Shimmie Flea Dance”
Had they had to have the chance to stare straight up
They could see that the dance was on the head of a pup
And the pups tired owners lead him down an itchy path
To the great big tub for a great big bath
At the Bugaboo Ball

At the Ball in the hall it began to rain hard
And soaked the decorations in the big Ball yard
“Musical Sam” kept the band on beat
While lots of festive fleas were washed out of their seat
Willie Mae Flea didn’t notice all at once at the start
‘Cause Young Jimmie Flea had done stolen her heart
Young Jimmie did a “Shimmie” that really took the cake
Then the whole soiree rolled in a big earth quake
At the Bugaboo Ball

They all shimmied to the left and they shimmied to the right
They flew into the dark, then shimmied out of sight
Old Butcher Bob Bug was flung away from his grub
And never found his cleaver with the gold bug nub
The Mayor of the town Big Jim McFly McFlea
Landed on the yard near an old oak tree
Young Jimmie and sweet Willie Mae avoided all the trouble
Flew off trapped in a shiny soap bubble
At the Bugaboo Ball

Now I can tell the tale of the Bugaboo dance
Because I was there to shake my pants
I didn’t want the attentions of Willie Mae Flea
Because another little buggle was sweet on me
We both were soaked on that warm spring day
And we both got married by the end of May
But we laugh when we think of when our pants got shook
And the Earthquake Dance made the record book
At the Bugaboo Ball
Tags:
 
 
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Current Music: Grateful Dead "Tennesee Jed"
 
 
 
Squantus
16 December 2009 @ 06:56 am
Hello? Anyone around?
Well if I ever do post a poem it will be to a Zen Koan of an audience I suppose.
I'm still muse-less and without a rhyme in my head. I have about 6 good ideas and I'm thinking of taking a writers workshop in the spring so I may strain a few written pieces out. Other than that... Happy Holidays everybody.

Love you all
-JD
 
 
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Current Music: "Yes it is" The Beatles
 
 
 
Squantus
25 November 2009 @ 10:24 am
And here I am talking all that trash that I will post a lot again. Don't trust me I must be a bad man I suppose.

Anyway, I did a little Zen thing (or maybe 12 step, I dunno) and cleaned house. It's a little mental thing. I had some very toxic friends and some things that I worried about all the time. I'm a bighearted guy and want to help the world, but there is a lesson in the teacher world that teachers have to learn, you can't save them all. I know I know, a lot of folk say that and believe it, but to internalize it is a rare lesson learned. In my world, some of the folks that I agonized over just kept doing to themselves. Oh yes, and they loved company in the dark corners where they liked to swim. When I realized that that is just "their special place", I decided to let them sojourn where they would and go to *MY* special place which is a lot sunnier on most days. Warm and breezy too.

It's funny who you pick and choose, and who picks and chooses you. I made some space and some old friends drifted back in. The good folk that I hadn't contacted in a while. When I cleaned out the undeserved guilt, the toxic thoughts and the bit of depression, well, it left a space. Nature abhors a vacuum so they say. I guess it is as true in Jung's synchronistic construct as it is in space. Welcome new friends, welcome old friends who I still enjoy having around, welcome possibilities!

That being said, as my life comes into a very much needed stability, I do have this tiny native urge to chaos. I want it to be constructive. I haven't been writing much lately, and I've decided that it is because I don't have a muse. If you want to apply, or know a good candidate, let me know. I'll post a classified later.

Love you all
-jd
 
 
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Squantus
30 September 2009 @ 05:24 pm
I wrote this as a memorial piece for a dear friend who passed some 5 years ago. It has a little bit of a Sufi inspiration, but the family really did like it. Tell me what you think.

Walking on the Water with Friends

I walked upon the water
And staring into space
Came a man projecting solitude
And sadness and some grace
He looked upon me solemnly
And said a single word
Remembrance

I stared into the vastness
As the ocean round me lay
The man smiled at me sadly
As I was poised to walk away
He touched my hand so kindly
And slowly spoke again
Comfort

The ocean depths called to me
My step unsteady now
The man approached me sterner
Concern upon his brow
He pointed round the empty deep
And in admonished tones
Faith

I felt the pull of many hearts
The old man took my hand
I felt a thousand hands grasp mine
They pulled me back to land
I looked and saw the hands of thousand gentle souls
And the man smiled sweetly now and pointed and said
Love
 
 
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Squantus
30 September 2009 @ 05:10 pm
Had a stress test on Monday and went to a funeral today. The stress test went fine. The funeral was actually ok. The man was the pappy of an old friend of mine. The friend didn't make it but his 3 sisters were there and since I grew up with them it was really a nice thing to meet and then go to lunch with them, even if under sad circumstances. The kids of the sisters were there and since I diapered at least one of them, it was good to see them all grown up.

The spot where he was buried was near the graves of two of their children who died in a fire when I was 6 or 7. His ex wife (my friend's mom) was there and I think it was bittersweet for her because she got to visit her two lost ones. The "Guest of Honor"; Well, as for him, I think its uncharitable and maybe downright bad karma to speak ill of the dead, so lets just say, he was in attendance.

RIP Mr. F. RIP

-jd
 
 
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Squantus
27 September 2009 @ 01:09 pm
I was playing around with the concepts of peoples multiple natures. Here I juxtaposed a flower and a little girl both growing into their beauty

A Flowers Ode to a Girl

A flower bloomed in May
All about it petals seemed to dance with joy and beauty
As it lay
Upon a field of other blossoms all about but
Not resplendent as the one that burst upon the beauty of that day

A flower passed its day
And laid its snowy finery upon the ground in soft repose
It lay
And yet its radiant beauty never dimmed
And from its newfound bed it seemed to call the magic of all days

A toddler came to play
She came straight through the field directly to the flower
Where it lay
And pressed the petals to her chest and giggled
As the flower merged within the child its beauty shown a way

A young girl came in May
Running through the field with wild abandon
And she played
First barefoot and then naked running innocent
And free with flowers in her hair and Flower round the spark that within her lay

A youth now many Mays
And though the world pressed challenges upon her
In its way
The flower fiercely firmly guarding all that in her soul
The girls heart good and pure and true would always always stay

A woman comes today
And now the toddler girl and youth are to the world
Evident on display
And yet the spark burns brighter clearer truer
Cradled in the flowers crystalline embrace shall always be protected but will always be displayed

A spirit came in May
A girl and flower whose bright beauty intertwined shines forth
And she played
Amid the fields that flowers find exciting and entrancing with all the wild abandonment
Of youth and innocence and worldly insights she will play
With memories and spirit and with passion and with fire
Of a flower born in May