Monday, November 18, 2019

In Memory


As I was searching for an appropriate musical piece to commemorate the memory of the 1989 massacre of Jesuits in El Salvador (like We Shall Overcome), I finally landed upon Bruce Springsteen's rendition of Bob Dylan's "Chimes of Freedom Flashing" sung at a concert in East Germany in 1988 (one year before the fall of the Berlin Wall). An estimated 200,000 - 300,000 East Berliners were in attendance and there were 165 curtain calls for the entire concert - highlighting these phrases in the words of the song which follow:

Tolling for the aching ones whose wounds cannot be nursed

Tolling for the luckless, the abandoned an’ forsaked

Tolling for the outcast, burnin’ constantly at stake

Tolling for the searching ones, on their speechless, seeking trail

Flashing for the refugees on the unarmed road of flight

For the disrobed faceless forms of no position



Far between sundown’s finish an’ midnight’s broken toll
We ducked inside the doorway, thunder crashing
As majestic bells of bolts struck shadows in the sounds
Seeming to be the chimes of freedom flashing
Flashing for the warriors whose strength is not to fight
Flashing for the refugees on the unarmed road of flight
An’ for each an’ ev’ry underdog soldier in the night
An’ we gazed upon the chimes of freedom flashing

In the city’s melted furnace, unexpectedly we watched
With faces hidden while the walls were tightening
As the echo of the wedding bells before the blowin’ rain
Dissolved into the bells of the lightning
Tolling for the rebel, tolling for the rake
Tolling for the luckless, the abandoned an’ forsaked
Tolling for the outcast, burnin’ constantly at stake
An’ we gazed upon the chimes of freedom flashing

Through the mad mystic hammering of the wild ripping hail
The sky cracked its poems in naked wonder
That the clinging of the church bells blew far into the breeze
Leaving only bells of lightning and its thunder
Striking for the gentle, striking for the kind
Striking for the guardians and protectors of the mind
An’ the unpawned painter behind beyond his rightful time
An’ we gazed upon the chimes of freedom flashing

Through the wild cathedral evening the rain unraveled tales
For the disrobed faceless forms of no position
Tolling for the tongues with no place to bring their thoughts
All down in taken-for-granted situations
Tolling for the deaf an’ blind, tolling for the mute
Tolling for the mistreated, mateless mother, the mistitled prostitute
For the misdemeanor outlaw, chased an’ cheated by pursuit
An’ we gazed upon the chimes of freedom flashing

Even though a cloud’s white curtain in a far-off corner flashed
An’ the hypnotic splattered mist was slowly lifting
Electric light still struck like arrows, fired but for the ones
Condemned to drift or else be kept from drifting
Tolling for the searching ones, on their speechless, seeking trail
For the lonesome-hearted lovers with too personal a tale
An’ for each unharmful, gentle soul misplaced inside a jail
An’ we gazed upon the chimes of freedom flashing

Starry-eyed an’ laughing as I recall when we were caught
Trapped by no track of hours for they hanged suspended
As we listened one last time an’ we watched with one last look
Spellbound an’ swallowed ’til the tolling ended
Tolling for the aching ones whose wounds cannot be nursed
For the countless confused, accused, misused, strung-out ones an’ worse
An’ for every hung-up person in the whole wide universe
An’ we gazed upon the chimes of freedom flashing

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Well, the Muses are at it again . . .

. . . as you can tell from the early hour of this (attempt at a “stream of consciousness”) entry . . . and, this, after sitting in the comfortable chair in the living room and looking out the floor to ceiling (the ceiling is one of those cathedral 22 footers) windows on the rain-washed (yes, quite a bit of rain lately [the folks from Iowa are saying that this is the rainiest it's been since the weather bureau began keeping records there in 1875 {probably one of the “climate change” cycles . . . (yes, but which one you ask? [the subject for another blog, I suppose])}]) attempt at a garden (and, so, why am I [suddenly] reminded of Francois Marie Arouet de Voltaire's “Candide”? [Voltaire vs Leibnitz {Master Pangloss' “metaphysico-theologo-cosmolonigology” - to catch Voltaire's “drift” (if you get my meaning [you just have to love that Voltaire])}] on "Optimism" {Cela est bien dit, mias il faut cultiver notre jardinad infinitum . . .} not to mention John Milton and Alexander Pope]) for about one hour (after awakening at around 1:30 AM 'til around 2:30 AM . . . ).  And, then the approximately one-half hour "setup" (which is what I would like to describe to you) to get online to this blog . . . .

So, gathering the computer bag (with items from yesterday's work [printing labels and stuffing, closing, labeling, and stamping some 90+ envelopes for a Bible school Anniversary Reunion {100th year since the founding, etc.}]) and assorted items which were left on the desk (because two big [and heavy] to carry on the bus [the 8 TB backup HDD, for example]) from the lower level, and heading back upstairs to the desk in the upper level bedroom (where it is a little warmer [hot air rises and the air conditioning seems to favor the lower level {cooler air sinks}]) . . . just the mass of it all is, rather, . . . unnerving . . . .

And, all of the wires, coiling like serpentine snakes from the 7-socket Belkin surge protector (the "Python" of the group) . . . .  First, plugging in the 8 TB HDD (and attaching the 120 GB [SSD] and 60 GB [HDD] [from previous computers {which have either “bitten the dust” (“[God] told the Man:  “Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from, ‘Don't eat from this tree’, the very ground is cursed because of you; getting food from the ground will be as painful as having babies is for your wife; you'll be working in pain all your life long.  The ground will sprout thorns and weeds, you'll get your food the hard way, planting and tilling and harvesting, sweating in the fields from dawn to dusk, until you return to that ground yourself, dead and buried; you started out as dirt, you'll end up dirt . . . .” Genesis 3:19 [ or been upgraded to SSDs . . . }] to it . . . ).

Next, a USB extender (as there are only three USB ports on this laptop [one of which is reserved for the USB “mouse” ‐ I often run out of room on the desktop {having 6 USB ports}]) to which I have, just now, plugged in two 2 GB PNY USB “sticks” - it's alphabet soup on the file explorer.

And, finally, the power source for the laptop (which utilizes the other plugin on the electrical wall socket closest to the desk [and, therefore, this - let it be said - “Rube Goldberg Machine”]).

And, so, this part of my day begins . . . .

But, having written all of this (and read the pdf version of William F. Bottiglia's Voltaire's Candide:  Analysis of a Classic (amongst other works [IN RE: Voltaire]), I now return to the “land of Nod” and leave you (upon awakening for the second time and completing the editing) with OK Go's “This Too Shall Pass.”