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  Passages Daily  Weather



“The storm starts, when the drops start dropping

When the drops stop dropping then the storm starts stopping.”

Dr. Seuss


“It was one of those perfect English autumnal days which occur more frequently in memory than in life.”

P.D. James, A Taste for Death


“Pray don't talk to me about the weather, Mr. Worthing. Whenever people talk to me about the weather, I always feel quite certain that they mean something else. And that makes me quite nervous.”

Oscar Wilde


“Tut, Tut, looks like rain”

A.A. Milne


“There is no way that we can predict the weather six months ahead beyond giving the seasonal average”

Stephen Hawking, Black Holes and Baby Universes


“My mom says that when it rains you never feel like you should be anywhere but home.”

Elise Broach, Shakespeare's Secret


“It always rains on tents. Rainstorms will travel thousands of miles, against prevailing winds for the opportunity to rain on a tent.”

Dave Barry

 

To This Degree


An image a day every day of the year



Today: A symbolical battle between the “Swords” and the “Torches”


Refusing to depend upon the past, the seeker turns warrior, fighting anew the eternal “Great War”.


POLARIZATION OF VALUES


May 6 2015 Taurus 17

(1° to 15° Taurus is SUBSTANTIATION in Act 1, INDIVIDUATION)

 

Feature  StudioONE

‘The Plains Indians,’ America’s Early Artists, at the Met


Photography by

Marnie Rogers


This show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art includes about 130 pieces of some of the earliest surviving art by Native Americans. Extracts From A New York Times Review:— Some of the earliest surviving art by native North Americans left America long ago. Soldiers, traders and priests, with magpie eyes for brilliance, bundled it up and shipped it across the sea to Europe. Painted robes, embroidered slippers and feathered headdresses tinkling with chimes found their way into cupboards in 18th-century London and Paris, and lay there half-forgotten. Now, in “The Plains Indians: Artists of Earth and Sky” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, some of those wondrous things have come home.


Of the about 130 pieces in the show, on loan from more than 50 international collections, those sent by the Musée du Quai Branly in Paris are exceptional: a drawing, on animal hide, of a half-abstract bird with prismatic wings; a raven-plume bonnet with feathers swept back as if hit by wind; and a bead-encrusted shoulder bag with a double-crescent design. They are all part of an exhibition that has to be one of the most completely beautiful sights in New York right now: But what would Europeans have thought when they first unpacked these objects in Paris centuries ago?


They might have noticed that the crescent emblems stitched on the beaded bag looked vaguely familiar. But from where? Moorish Spain. And the beads? They were glass, probably Venetian. Even a viewer who found the plumed bonnet outlandish might have admired the skill that had gone into weaving its headband from porcupine quills.  Read This Article

 

Weather

May 6





from NOAA

The National Weather Service


Brattleboro:


Sunny, with a high near 77. Calm wind.


Tonight

Clear, with a low around 36. Calm wind.



Looking ahead:


Thursday

Sunny, with a high near 82. Calm wind becoming southwest around 5 mph in the afternoon.


Thursday Night

Mostly clear, with a low around 54. Calm wind.


Vermont Views

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Daily Articles

To This Degree

An image a day for every day of the year.


Passages


Weather

Local & National


Pretty Often

Art & Soul

Notes on Creating


Make a note of it




 
Notes on Creating by Audrey Flack from her title

Art & Soul

SKETCHING THE LAOCOÖN


It happens everywhere. In China, sketching a pagoda; in Rome, sketching the statues at the Vatican. Right now I am standing before the Laocoön. I have a small sketchbook and a box of terra-cotta Prismacolor pencils. Watercolors need an entirely different set-up: a palette, a chair to sit on, a water jug, brushes, a sponge and rag, a watercolor block, a set period of time. All I want to do is make quick two minute studies. I stand cradling the book in my left hand, drawing with my right. I try to be unobstrusive, but somehow the onlookers find me. They respond with nods and comments, criticisms and compliments.


People feel they have the right to watch artists work. The artist becomes public domain. I feel self conscious… eyes peering over my shoulder… people standing too close to get a better look, elbowing and jostling to get a better look. The verdict from these noisy Italians is that they like my drawings; they express admiration. I smile and nod, acknowledging their remarks. My drawing has expressed their feelings for them. In that sense, I have become a public figure. (Rome, May, 1984)

 
Column  Old Lady Blog  Toni Ortner
The angel of writing finally gained her audience with God

Good evening, the angel said and bowed so low her wings lay flat on the ground.
I am exhausted, the angel said. God nodded.
I have been faithfully doing the task you assigned as well as I could. I am holding the meaning that is in search of the author, but there are billions of authors down there and each one thinks he is the one.
There is no one.” God said.
They are so small, and none of them can handle the weight of the message I hold.
Understood.
What I have been forced to do is split up the meaning into trillions of fragments and words and sentences and paragraphs. Each author catches a tiny fraction of what I hold and thinks it is the whole.
None can vision the whole God said. 
The thing is each author makes a book out of an infinitesimal fragment and then he/ she gets all puffed up like a helium balloon and tries to win awards from the Guggenheim Foundation or apply to Bill Gates for special projects or spends months filling out applications to the Lannan Foundation, Room of Her Own out in California, the NEA, the National League of American Pen Women, the Vermont Arts Council and the Witterbynnar Foundation. Why don’t we give these writers a break and send them money? 
Money is not the answer. Even if they think it is.  God smiled.
The writers compete viciously for a handful of awards and often a writer with little talent wins.
Popular today. Dead tomorrow. They are dust. Be more compassionate. Take pity on them. Even my Son said, “They know not what they do."

I am constantly on the move, not a second to rest.
Why complain.
God forbid! (Oh, excuse me I did not mean to take your name in vain).Don’t get me wrong. I am not complaining. I am honored to do whatever task you assign.
So? What is the problem?
No problem. I am wondering if I need to change the way I view the situation. 
That is what I am forced to do each day. You see what you see the second you see it, but since the person or circumstance or weather changes the next second, you are compelled to look with scrutiny and make another choice. It is like playing a game of chess that never ends. You can never take a break; never take your eyes off the board but since I made it this way. I cannot complain.
 Read This Article ➤Old_Lady_Blog.htmlOld_Lady_Blog.htmlshapeimage_3_link_0shapeimage_3_link_1


New

Features, Articles and Columns




Feature

Overheard

Murcan splained

for Forns



Feature

100 Years Ago


888,246 ceramic poppies




Feature

Monkey’s Cloak

GACELA DE LA MUERTE OSCURA

GACELA OF THE DARK DEATH


After Lorca

Terry Hauptman





Column

In Between


FEAR OF CHANGE




Feature

StudioONE


‘The Plains Indians,’ America’s Early Artists, at the Met

Photography by

Marnie Rogers




Column

Old Lady Blog

The angel of writing finally gained her audience with God

Toni Ortner




Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


From the Bottom of the Deck

Mac Gander





Column

Articulate

Witness: An Exploration of Art and Journalism.

Kate Anderson, Ed.





Column

Natural Inclusivity

Being Someone Other

Alan Rayner




Article

Weekly Feature

Avalonia, and why New Hampshire is really Africa





Guest Article

Sound and Silence

Christian McEwen



Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


Onto myself

Charles Monette





Column

Vermont Diary

Being anti-GMO is conducting a ‘War on Science’





Feature

REAL FOOD !


Pure di Patate all’Olio

(Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes)

Phil Innes




Special Feature  “Virtually There” The SW of England Coastal Path

Part 5 

The Lizard




Feature

Selected Letters

Open Letter to Members of the Vermont Legislature

Offie Wortham





Column

Vermont Diary

American News Explained to Foreigners




Column

Post Oil Solutions


April Climate Change Café Hosts

“Radical Simplicity” Author Jim Merkel

 Tim Stevenson





Article

Weekly Feature

Policing our

bio-region

In conversation with Kraig LaPorte





Article

If You Lived Here

Strolling of the Heifers 2014 

Locavore Index 

Plus National Localvore Rankings





Column

4our 


Mentors

Matti Salminen




Feature

REAL FOOD !


Starry Gazey Pie




Article

Curious Topics


Easter Eggs — and the Anglo-Saxon goddess of light




Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


Passover Seder 2015

Nanci Bern






Article

If You Lived Elsewhere

Wind River Mountains —

A Little History





Column

Vermont Diary

What would Mr. Rogers do?

Editorial




Column

O Citoyen!


Advance Care Directives —

A Report

Robert Oeser





Column

Articulate

Causal theories for cultural impact. Instrumental and intrinsic value. Why do we ask.

Kate Anderson





Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


hallelujah

Phil Innes





Column

4our 


Discernment of a Samurai

Matti Salminen





Column

Energetics

Energy News around the World March 2015

George Harvey




Feature

Reviews, Old & New


‘Norwegian Wood’, Haruki Murakami reviewed by Alan Rayner




Column

Post Oil Solutions


Intentional Community

 Tim Stevenson





Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


Eclipse on Solsbury Hill

Alan Rayner





Feature

Overheard


Hurricane is a native American word, Typhoon is Greek




Article 

Weekly Feature

In conversation with Humberto Ramirez




Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


Sunrise on

Western Avenue

Mac Gander




Column

Vermont Diary

More schoolin’ but no change for a buck

Editorial




Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


First Person, Plural

— A Song of Grace and Flavour

Alan Rayner





Feature

REAL FOOD !


We have met the enemy and they are targeting our children.




Article

If You Lived Here

International Collaboration to Launch 

Vermont Performance Lab 2015 Season





Column

Untitled Work

No, Tell Me How You Really Feel, Lol




Column

Open Mind


Increase Taxes on Liquor and Tobacco

Offie Wortham





Article

If You Lived Elsewhere

Invisible You. The Human Microbiome exhibition opens at Eden this spring





Feature

100 Years Ago

January and February 1915

The Year Thus Far




Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


Fortune Cookies and Lucky Charms

Mac Gander




Article

If You Lived Here

Tour de Heifer promises

"Vermont's most challenging dirt road rides" 





Column

O Citoyen!


Brattleboro Citizens’ Breakfast  Report

BMH Center for Wound Healing

Robert Oeser




Column

A Unique Research Library In Brattleboro

Kit Barry




Special Feature  “Virtually There” The SW of England Coastal Path


Part 4 

St. Michael’s Mount, in passing




Feature

Monkey’s Cloak


DRIFTING INTO LIGHT

Julia Ferrari





Column

In Between

LIFE LOOKING BACK AT US

Julia Ferrari




Article

Monthly Feature

Got Lagoon?




Column

Vermont Diary

Poldark is coming, my ‘ansomes!




Column

Old Lady Blog

THE BULLIES IN BLACK SUITS

Toni Ortner




Column

Open Mind


Why Do Some Of Our Brightest Fail In High School?

Offie Wortham




Feature 

Monkey’s Cloak


Passenger

Michael Cioffi



Column

Old Lady Blog


Dresden

Toni Ortner

Feb 16, 2015



Monkey’s Cloak

Love…You are


Nanci Bern




Column

O Citoyen!


Brattleboro Memorial Hospital Center for Wound Healing 

Robert Oeser

Feb 12, 2015 



Which Store Was Where on Main Street When

Martha M Moravec

Feb 11, 2014




Feature

Curious Topics

The Mystery of Indian Queens



Column

Old Lady Blog

The Bridge


Toni Ortner

Feb 4, 2015



Column

Nurturing Nature

30 billion water bottles can all be wrong

Tasneem Tawfeek

Jan 29, 2015



Curious Topics

The Pirate

Queen of Ireland






Column

Chess

Never Back Down in the King’s Gambit

Phil Innes

Jan 18, 2015



Column

A Brief History of Natural Inclusion

Alan Rayner

Jan 13, 2015


Column

Articulate

The order of chaos

Kate Anderson

Dec 1, 2014


Beer & Bangers

J.D McCliment’s and MacLaomainn's Scottish Pub

Jun 30 2014

 

Column  Articulate  Kate Anderson, editor

Witness: An Exploration of Art and Journalism.




On Friday and Saturday May 8-9 at 8:00 PM in the Hooker-Dunham Theater and Gallery, the Brattleboro artist’s collective Vortex 2 will present a benefit event for Vermont Independent Media, the publisher of the Commons, Brattleboro’s non-profit independent community newspaper. Titled "Witness: An Exploration of Art and Journalism," the show will include readings of prose and poetry, video and photographs, and music. Suggested donation is twelve dollars at the door, but any amount will be accepted. Those who attend are encouraged to pay what they can and also to support The Commons by becoming members.  The benefit event is based on the concept that, like journalism, various forms of art are ways of bearing witness to the truth of things.


The benefit event is based on the concept that, like journalism, various forms of art are ways of bearing witness to the truth of things. John Rose will read new work from his epic poem, which focuses on American culture and society in the 1960s and 1970s, and Mac Gander will read work focused on his experiences as a journalist and poet in The Philippines during the revolution that overthrew the Marcos dictatorship. Andrew McCord will read poems from his experiences as a journalist in Mississippi, and his travels in India, Pakistan, and the disputed territory of Kashmir. Abigail Straus and Ben Somin will read poems from the Stalin era in Russian and in translation, and also try out some original work. These readings will be accompanied by some projected video and art, as well as music.


The event will be in two parts, keyed to two quotes. The first half will center on the readings by Gander and McCord and also include videos that illuminate the connections between journalism and art. It will take its focus from lines from Robert Lowell’s last poem, “Epilogue,” in which he says Yet why not say what happened. / Pray for the grace of accuracy….It will include readings from Anna Akhmatova’s “Requiem,” and a poem by James Fenton, perhaps the greatest journalist-poet, based on his coverage of the war in Cambodia in the 1960s and 1970s.  Read This Article

 

Feature  Monkey’s Cloak

GACELA DE LA MUERTE OSCURA

GACELA OF THE DARK DEATH


After Lorca

Terry Hauptman



I want to sleep the dream of the apples,

To withdraw from the tumult of cemeteries”

—Federico García Lorca


Cover the mirrors with black cloth

As the Malak-ha-Moves

The Angel of Death

Passes over us.


Owls sitting shiva on orange crates

Shadow the winds of fate.


Fake coals in the fireplace

Rat poisoning behind the sofa


Icon’s of desire

Dream qasida’s of childhood.


Death rattle in your throat

Gacela de la Muerte Oscura,

Gacela of the Dark Death

Pierces hawk migrations

On the corridor of souls.


The dead and the living embrace

In one fell swoop,

This starry night’s malachite sleep.

...


Read This and other reader’s poems

 

Feature  100 Years Ago

888,246 ceramic poppies




The real extent of the first world war was just becoming apparent in 1915, and the awful slaughter understood to be both increasing and without view of the end. It has been a British custom to remember these events every year by wearing poppies, and a recent event at The Tower of London. We received one of the poppies this Christmas and have now put it in our garden. Here below is an essay with images on the installation. [Image above: at the Tower of London.]


Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red was a work of installation art placed in the moat of the Tower of London, England, between July and November 2014, commemorating the centenary of the outbreak of World War I. It consisted of 888,246 ceramic red poppies, each intended to represent one British or Colonial serviceman killed in the War. The artist was Paul Cummins, with setting by stage designer Tom Piper. The work's title was taken from the first line of a poem by an unknown World War I soldier.


Background

The work's title, and Cummins' inspiration for the work, came from a poem by an unknown World War I soldier from Derbyshire, who joined up in the early days of the war and died in Flanders. The poem begins: "The blood swept lands and seas of red, / Where angels dare to tread / ... ". The poem was contained in the soldier's unsigned will, found by Cummins among old records in Chesterfield.


The Tower of London moat, in which the work was set, was used in the early days of the war as a training ground for City of London workers who had enlisted to fight – the "Stockbrokers' Battalion".


Form

The work consisted of a sea of ceramic red poppies, which were individually hand-made at Cummins' ceramics works in Derbyshire, and some at Johnson Tiles in Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent. The poppies were added to the installation progressively by volunteers. The 497,000 kg of the Etruria Marl based Etruscan red earthenware used, as well as the majority of the manufacturing equipment and materials, were supplied by Potclays Limited in Stoke-on-Trent. There were eventually 888,246 of the flowers, representing one count of the number of British and Colonial military fatalities in World War I. The sea of flowers was arranged to resemble a pool of blood which appeared to be pouring out of a bastion window (the "Weeping Window").  Read This Article

 

Column  Natural Inclusivity  Alan Rayner

Being Someone Other


The wrenching of analytical aside from intuitive does seem to be a recurrent feature of my life experience, which has found its way into much of my writing and artwork. It was present in the very different personalities of my father (~analytical) and mother (~intuitive), which sometimes came into violent collision, with me caught in their cross-fire. It was present in the schism between colonist and colonized, which I witnessed during my early childhood in Kenya during the Mau Mau uprising. It was present in my schooling, where I came under pressure to follow the scientific orientation of my father, even though I struggled to understand and felt very uncomfortable with ‘hard-line’ scientific thought and method. It was present throughout my scientific career, where I struggled to comply with what I felt were expectations of me during an era when ‘biology’ was progressively reduced from the study of organic life in all its beauty and diversity to the study of genetic bar-codes.


I certainly experienced and experience the feeling of ‘Being Someone Other’ than people expect me to be, and all the anxiety that accompanies that condition. In 1999, that experience led to ‘breakdown and breakout’, when I quit my work as a mycological research scientist – a wrenching experience that I have never recovered from and leaves me with the feeling of utter failure in that role (a feeling reinforced by the disregard of my peers). Read This Article

 

Article  Weekly Feature

Avalonia, and why New Hampshire is really Africa


Mount Wantasticut and land east of the Connecticut river is of a very different geology from that of Vermont. Here is an article about the floating continent of Avalonia and why geologists joke that New Hampshire is really Africa.


Avalonia was a microcontinent in the Paleozoic era. Crustal fragments of this former microcontinent underlie south-west Great Britain, and the eastern coast of North America. It is the source of many of the older rocks of Western Europe, Atlantic Canada, and parts of the coastal United States. Avalonia is named for the Avalon Peninsula in Newfoundland.


Avalonia developed as a volcanic arc on the northern margin of Gondwana. It eventually rifted off, becoming a drifting microcontinent. The Rheic Ocean formed behind it, and the Iapetus Ocean shrank in front. It collided with the continents Baltica, then Laurentia, and finally with Gondwana, ending up in the interior of Pangea. When Pangea broke up, Avalonia's remains were divided by the rift which became the Atlantic Ocean. Read This Article

 

Guest Article  Christian McEwen

Sound and Silence


In The Spell of the Sensuous, the writer David Abram describes two friends meeting again after a long time. If we should chance to overhear them, he says, we might well notice “a tonal, melodic layer of communication” beneath the explicit meaning of the words, “a rippling rise and fall of the voices in a sort of musical duet, rather like two birds singing to each other.”


Each voice mimics a portion of the other’s melody, at the same time adding its own inflection, which is then echoed by the original speaker, “the two singing bodies  tuning and attuning to one another, rediscovering a common register, remembering each other.” This tuning and retuning, this remembering, is what is called “entrainment.”


It is hardly surprising that human beings should attune to one other in this way. After all, we live in a rhythmic universe, in which the earth revolves around the sun and the moon around the earth. Our bodies are rhythmic organisms, containing breath and pulse and heart beat. If you put two grandfather clocks in the same room, their pendulums will fall into unison within a couple of days. In the same way, when people talk or sing or move together, we tend to “entrain,” or synchronize our pace with one another. This is one of the delights of good conversation: not just the stated theme, the surface content, but the underlying pleasure of entrainment, the half-conscious pas de deux with someone else’s mind.


Every piece of music is made up of sound and pause, sound and pause, which is to say that it also includes silence. The trumpeter Miles Davis was praised for creating good music because he “opened up the space between the notes and stepped inside.”  Martin Buber, philosopher and mystic, accomplished something similar in his speech, as a member of his audience reports: Read This Article

 
Column  Vermont Diary 
Being anti-GMO is conducting a ‘War on Science’

A recent edition of a national magazine has just equated concern about GMOs with the following lists of ‘beliefs’ in an article called ‘The War on Science.’ I’ll state the name of the magazine lower down this Dairy, but here is what being anti-GMO is compared with:—

Moon Landing [denial of]
Evolution [denial of]
Flat Earth [believed in]
Dinosaurs in Eden [with people]
Global Warming [denial of]
Vaccination [anti]

Somewhere in the middle of their list they added GMOs [resentment of] though mentioned that 64  countries have banned or severely limited GMO products the magazine stated that there is “no evidence that GMOs are harmful to human health.” Read This Article ➤

Column  Articulate  Kate Anderson
Witness: An Exploration of Art and Journalism.

On Friday and Saturday May 8-9 at 8:00 PM in the Hooker-Dunham Theater and Gallery, the Brattleboro artist’s collective Vortex 2 will present a benefit event for Vermont Independent Media, the publisher of the Commons, Brattleboro’s non-profit independent community newspaper. Titled "Witness: An Exploration of Art and Journalism," the show will include readings of prose and poetry, video and photographs, and music. Suggested donation is twelve dollars at the door, but any amount will be accepted. Those who attend are encouraged to pay what they can and also to support The Commons by becoming members.  The benefit event is based on the concept that, like journalism, various forms of art are ways of bearing witness to the truth of things. Read This Article ➤

Column  Nurturing Nature  Tasneem Tawfeek
30 billion water bottles can all be wrong
 
I remain hopeful that actions will replace the notion that one person can make no difference. As awareness is raised, especially when it comes to the environment, the actions of every person counts and makes all the difference towards establishing a healthier planet. Brooke Medicine Eagle is quoted as saying, "There is hope if people will begin to awaken that spiritual part of them, that heartfelt knowledge that we are caretakers of this planet.” Read This Article ➤

Column  Kit Barry Ephemera  Kit Barry
A Unique Research Library In Brattleboro
 
In Brattleboro there is a very unusual room dedicated to American life. It contains at the same time - the Past, the Present, and the Future of American endeavors in all aspects of our culture. It is an archive. A research archive. And when all points are considered, there is no other facility like this one in the United States. In this room, there is not to be found what one expects to see in a library - Books. Instead what is found is ephemera. And with that confusing word now said, we will move quickly to the name of the archive, a definition, and a content description. The current essay includes 5 images and captions togehter with 2,200 words of text to guide the researcher. Read This Article ➤

Column  Consolations of History  Martha M Moravec
Which Store Was Where on Main Street When
 
We froze when we first heard the sound. It was like a swarm of bees, but we knew it was the planes. Fascinated, we watched them come in towards the shore in a huge inverted V like a flock of Canadian geese. Why are they coming here? Can’t they see it is the wrong target? I yelled. They must be idiots. Don’t they have maps? There are no military installations here. As they came closer in that huge impersonal V, we scurried to take shelter. Nothing like this had ever happened before.  Suddenly there was too much glass, too many windows and not enough walls. The carved wooden lattice framework over the bed had holes.  Read This Article ➤

Column  O Citoyen!  Robert Oeser
Advance Care Directives — A Report    

Brattleboro Citizens' Breakfast, March 20,  2015, Gibson-Aiken Center      

What Do Advance Care Directives have to do with Being a  Local Citizen?  
Presenter: Joanna Rueter  of www.sustainable-aging.com  802-380-0301 

After her talk,  Joanna added: “Take a moment to think about one death you have experienced or heard about. What was most difficult or what was special and loving about it?”
 
As you read this - stop a moment to answer this question for yourself before you read on. Read This Article ➤

Column  Old Lady Blog  Toni Ortner
The angel of writing finally gained her audience with God

Good evening, the angel said and bowed so low her wings lay flat on the ground.
I am exhausted, the angel said. God nodded.
I have been faithfully doing the task you assigned as well as I could. I am holding the meaning that is in search of the author, but there are billions of authors down there and each one thinks he is the one.
There is no one.” God said.
They are so small, and none of them can handle the weight of the message I hold.
Understood.
What I have been forced to do is split up the meaning into trillions of fragments and words and sentences and paragraphs. Each author catches a tiny fraction of what I hold and thinks it is the whole. Read This Article ➤

Column  Post Oil Solutions  Tim Stevenson
April Climate Change Café Hosts 
“Radical Simplicity” Author Jim Merkel
    
     The April Climate Change Café will host Jim Merkel, the author of Radical Simplicity: Small Footprints on a Finite Earth,” who will give a talk around the issue, “Degrowth—Can Society Survive Without Growth?”
 
This will take place on Tuesday, April 28, 6:00 PM, at Brooks Memorial Library, Main Street, Brattleboro. NOTE: Because of the limited seating capacity, as well the interest we anticipate in our speaker and his topic, reservations are encouraged: 802.869.2141. Please do not call the library. We will only be able to accommodate the first 55 people. Read This Article ➤

Column  4our  Matti Salminen, Nanci Bern
Learning as One
Matti Salminen
Learning is done by reorganizing other people’s ideas and assimilating them to fit our skill base and personal philosophy.  And thus, learning a skill, or obtaining some knowledge from someone who you know, and see regularly, will have the potential for life transformation.  What is most important in the mentor relationship is just that—the relationship.  Mentor relationships begin and end with mutual respect; reciprocity is, in the learning relationship, the root of all learning.  Years ago, when I wanted to spend my life skiing in the mountains, I had a mentor named Mark.  He was a great skier and had lived the ski bum lifestyle that I wanted for myself.  Mark was enigmatic to me; a symbol of the mind soul connection cultivated by spending time in the mountains.  Skiing wasn’t just a sport—not to me—it was a statement.  Life was meant to be blissful and carefree.  Knowing Mark helped me to see a way to living a life which resonated in my heart. Read This Article ➤

Column  Open Mind  Offie Wortham
Increase Taxes on Liquor and Tobacco

As the Vermont legislature considers its budget deficit a viable alternative is to increase the sales tax on liquor and tobacco. Vermont presently has the lowest sales tax on liquor in the nation. With these increased taxes Vermont can close its budget gap, save money in social services, and improve the health and welfare of thousands of children and adults in the state. Many studies investigating such a relationship found that alcohol prices were a major factor influencing alcohol consumption among youth and young adults and lowering the frequency of diseases, injuries, and death, violence and crime. Taxes on alcohol and tobacco have been enacted mainly with the intent of increasing revenues, rather than discouraging negative health effects.

Presently, the major policy element of U.S. programs to deter teenage and young adult drinking has been to increase State minimum legal drinking ages (MLDAs). (It is ironic to hear important officials in the Shumlin administration requesting that the age limit for buying beer, wine, and alcohol be lowered from 21 to 18.) Read This Article ➤

Column  In Between  Julia Ferrari
FEAR OF CHANGE
 
Recently I went down to Boston to pick up the finished exhibit: “The Whole Art of Language: Julia Ferrari and Dan Carr’s Presses at Golgonooza,” which was up for a time at the Massachusetts College of Art & Design. Everything was packed and waiting for me. In fact, everything could have come back to me months ago, as one friend had offered to take it back for me. I however, wanted the experience of it coming full circle, with my returning to take it home, no matter how long I was delayed because of the harsh cold winter. So as the snows melted and a Boston visit became more favorable, a nearby friend who wanted a chance to visit the city too, offered to drive and we journeyed down together. Just before leaving, a Raven called out and I looked up to see it fly low over the peak of my roof-top, as if alerting me to the potential of the day ahead. Read This Article ➤

Column  Untitled Work  Mac Gander
No, Tell Me How You Really Feel, Lol

Someone recently asked me this question: What does it feel like to be a poet? I found the question interesting, in a savage sort of way, and I wrote what follows in response, and then I wrote the poem that appears at the end of the essay. The great novelist David Foster Wallace, who killed himself unexpectedly a few years ago, has this commencement speech that has been anthologized. In it, he starts with this story: two young fish are swimming along, and they pass by an older fish, who says "how's the water?" The younger fish are slightly puzzled, but then one of them says, "It's fine." They pass on, and then after a couple of minutes one of the younger fish turns to the other and says, "What's water?" I feel a bit like that, answering this question, since writing poetry is so deeply embedded in my sense of self that it is very hard to untangle it—when I read this question, it almost seems like you have asked me to answer "who are you?" Read This Article ➤

Column  Energetics  George Harvey
Around the World March 2015
 
¶ According to a study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems, the cost of producing power in central and southern Europe will have declined to between 4 and 6 cents per kWh by 2025, and to as low as 2 to 4 cents by 2050.” The study was commissioned by the think tank Agora Energiewende. [CleanTechnica]
¶ The UK low carbon economy was worth £122 billion in 2013 and has been growing at 7% per year, according to government figures. A low carbon investment report from the Department of Energy and Climate Change says the sector supports over 460,000 jobs, or about 1.5% of all UK jobs. [Business Green]
 Read This Article ➤

Column  Natural Inclusivity  Alan Rayner
Being Someone Other

The wrenching of analytical aside from intuitive does seem to be a recurrent feature of my life experience, which has found its way into much of my writing and artwork. It was present in the very different personalities of my father (~analytical) and mother (~intuitive), which sometimes came into violent collision, with me caught in their cross-fire. It was present in the schism between colonist and colonized, which I witnessed during my early childhood in Kenya during the Mau Mau uprising. It was present in my schooling, where I came under pressure to follow the scientific orientation of my father, even though I struggled to understand and felt very uncomfortable with ‘hard-line’ scientific thought and method. It was present throughout my scientific career, where I struggled to comply with what I felt were expectations of me during an era when ‘biology’ was progressively reduced from the study of organic life in all its beauty and diversity to the study of genetic bar-codes. I certainly experienced and experience the feeling of ‘Being Someone Other’ than people expect me to be, and all the anxiety that accompanies that condition. In 1999, that experience led to ‘breakdown and breakout’, when I quit my work as a mycological research scientist – a wrenching experience that I have never recovered from and leaves me with the feeling of utter failure in that role (a feeling reinforced by the disregard of my peers). Read This Article ➤

 Guest Article  Christian McEwen
Sound and Silence

In The Spell of the Sensuous, the writer David Abram describes two friends meeting again after a long time. If we should chance to overhear them, he says, we might well notice “a tonal, melodic layer of communication” beneath the explicit meaning of the words, “a rippling rise and fall of the voices in a sort of musical duet, rather like two birds singing to each other.”

	Each voice mimics a portion of the other’s melody, at the same time adding its own inflection, which is then echoed by the original speaker, “the two singing bodies  tuning and attuning to one another, rediscovering a common register, remembering each other.” This tuning and retuning, this remembering, is what is called “entrainment.” Read This Article ➤

Article  Curious Topics 
50th Python Reunion
 
To celebrate the achievements of the Monty Python crew, UKTV channel Gold—which will air the final performance of the reunion on Sunday—contracted with sculptor Iain Prendergast to create a 50-foot fiberglass version of the famous "Norwegian Blue" parrot. The parrot, which is famous for being dead from the moment it was sold, was placed on Monday at Potters Fields Park in South London, near Tower Bridge. This is both a fine reminder to tune in on Sunday to the broadcast and an outstanding opportunity to inspire countless visitors to declare in increasingly frantic tones that "This parrot is no more! It has ceased to be! It’s expired and gone to meet its maker! This is a late parrot! It’s a stiff!" Because if there’s anything that you need to commission a 50-foot fiberglass sculpture to get people who know every word to famous Monty Python sketches to do, it’s to recite the funnier bits of those sketches to anyone within earshot. Read This Article ➤

Article  If You Lived Here 
Strolling of the Heifers sets theme, seeks parade units, volunteers
 
Strolling of the Heifers has announced its 2015 theme: “Love Your Farmer.”
 The annual Strolling of the Heifers Parade takes place on Saturday, June 6 at 10 a.m. It is the centerpiece of a weekend full of events including a Friday, June 5 evening street festival, the 11-acre Slow Living Expo on parade day, and on Sunday, June 7, the Tour de Heifer dirt-road cycling rides, a Farmers Breakfast at The Marina, and a Farm Tour. The mission of Strolling of the Heifers is "connecting people with healthy local food, encouraging and facilitating innovation and entrepreneurship in the farm/food sector, and supporting the development of stronger local food systems and healthy, sharing, connected and resilient communities." Read This Article ➤

Article  If You Lived Elsewhere 
Wind River Mountains — A Little History
There is still a wild west, almost as wild as represented in a novel “Into The Savage Country”, by Shannon Burke — which has adventures in the Wind River Mountains between Americans and British, and Sioux, Blackfoot and Crow, set in the 1820s. Americans and British were in fact vying for the upper West Coast of America and as far inland as they could establish themselves. I won’t spoil the novel by telling you who won, but it is exceptionally well written — and by that I don’t mean correctly boring — but incorporating all sorts of detail from frontier life of the time. I liked the description of this place so much I wanted to see what it looked like and found the accompanying pictures and a little history. Read This Article ➤

Article  Weekly Feature 
Avalonia, and why New Hampshire is really Africa
 
Mount Wantasticut and land east of the Connecticut river is of a very different geology from that of Vermont. Here is an article about the floating continent of Avalonia and why geologists joke that New Hampshire is really Africa.
Avalonia was a microcontinent in the Paleozoic era. Crustal fragments of this former microcontinent underlie south-west Great Britain, and the eastern coast of North America. It is the source of many of the older rocks of Western Europe, Atlantic Canada, and parts of the coastal United States. Avalonia is named for the Avalon Peninsula in Newfoundland.

Avalonia developed as a volcanic arc on the northern margin of Gondwana. It eventually rifted off, becoming a drifting microcontinent. The Rheic Ocean formed behind it, and the Iapetus Ocean shrank in front. It collided with the continents Baltica, then Laurentia, and finally with Gondwana, ending up in the interior of Pangea. When Pangea broke up, Avalonia's remains were divided by the rift which became the Atlantic Ocean. Read This Article ➤

Article  Monthly Feature 
Got Lagoon?
 
[Caption: a 5-mile lagoon wall extending 1.5 miles from the shore.] The UK wants to lead the world in this new sustainable technology, which has big up-front costs, but inexpensive energy ever after. Plans to generate electricity from the world's first series of tidal lagoons have been unveiled in the UK. The six lagoons, four in Wales and one each in Somerset and Cumbria, will capture incoming and outgoing tides behind giant sea walls, and use the weight of the water to power turbines. The series of six lagoons could generate 8% of the UK's electricity for an investment of £30bn. Read This Article ➤

Feature  Selected Letters 
Open Letter to Members of the Vermont Legislature
Offie Wortham
	There has been a great deal of confusion and misinformation recently about the success of the CHSVT. Three hundred and seventy-four (374) certificates were earned by the inmates, and 41 received a high school diploma in 2014. The purpose of the larger program, the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Certification program, is to help inmates acquire an education that will help them secure employment upon their release. The 333 individuals who received their Industry Recognized Credentials are more prepared for getting a job than most high school graduates. They have completed courses in: OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), First Aid/CPR/AED, Solid Works, Master Cam, NCCCER (National Center for Construction Education & Research, ASE (Automotive Service Excellence), SerSafe, ProStart, Manage First, Master Gardener, and American
Read This Article ➤

Feature  Monkey’s Cloak 
GACELA DE LA MUERTE OSCURA
GACELA OF THE DARK DEATH
After Lorca
Terry Hauptman


				I want to sleep the dream of the apples,
				To withdraw from the tumult of cemeteries”
					—Federico García Lorca

Cover the mirrors with black cloth
As the Malak-ha-Moves
The Angel of Death
Passes over us.
...

Read This and other reader’s poems ➤

Special Feature  “Virtually There” The South-West of England Coastal Path 
Part 5 — The Lizard
On the way around the Cornish Coast on the National Trust Footpath we have arrived from Mount’s Bay at The Lizard, the most southerly point in England

The Lizard (Cornish: An Lysardh) is a peninsula in southern Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. The most southerly point of the British mainland is near Lizard Point at grid reference SW 701,115. The Lizard village, is the most southerly on the British mainland, and is in the civil parish of Landewednack; the most southerly parish. The valleys of the River Helford and Loe Pool form the northern boundary, with the rest of the peninsula surrounded by sea.The area measures approximately 14 miles (23 km) x 14 miles (23 km). The Lizard is one of England's natural regions and has been designated as national character area 157 by Natural England. The peninsula is known for its geology and for its rare plants and lies within the Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). Almost a third of Cornwall has AONB designation, with the same status and protection as a National Park. Read This Article ➤

Feature  100 Years Ago 
888,246 ceramic poppies

The real extent of the first world war was just becoming apparent in 1915, and the awful slaughter understood to be both increasing and without view of the end. It has been a British custom to remember these events every year by wearing poppies, and a recent event at The Tower of London. We received one of the poppies this Christmas and have now put it in our garden. Here below is an essay with images on the installation. [Image top: a ceramic poppy from the installation now in our garden in Brattleboro. Right: at the Tower of London.]
Read This Article ➤

Feature  Overheard 
Murcan splained for Forns

Iowans will tell you they come from Iwa
In Ohio its Hia
People from Milwaukee say they are from Mwawkee
In Louisville its Loovul
In Newark its Nerk
In Indianapolis its Naplus
People from Philadelphia don’t come from there, they come from Fuhluffia
and up in Canada the people from Toronto come from Tronna

But Baltimore wins the prize for slurring (Baltimore pronounced Balamer)
An eagle there is an iggle
[With thanks to Bill Bryson’s “The Mother Tongue” for these observations] Read This Article ➤

Feature  REAL FOOD ! 
Pure di Patate all’Olio 
— Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes
Phil Innes

A cook book at the Brooks library by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich had some good looking vegetable dishes and I decided to try some. Healthier than adding all that butter and less ‘wet’ than adding milk.

1 lbs Idaho or Yukon Gold potatoes, scrubbed but unpeeled
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt
1 cup water
Freshly ground pepper preferably white
(option, add 4 cloves garlic per serving, peeled and smashed) METHOD Read This Article ➤

Feature  Reviews, Old & New 
‘Norwegian Wood’, by Haruki Murakami reviewed by Alan Rayner

‘Norwegian Wood’ is an early novel by Haruki Murakami, and the one that brought him huge national and international success, along with a reputation as one of the World’s finest and most original authors. Although not typical of his work and not my personal favourite – that place would have to go to ‘Kafka on the Shore’ – it contains all the ingredients of what I find absorbing, fascinating and deeply relevant to the human condition in his writing. That doesn’t mean to say that I find him an easy or comfortable read – there is much that is quite disturbing and challenging – but I do recognise an artistry and depth of touch, along with an appreciation of natural wildness and beauty that I find exquisite. This comes across immediately in ‘Norwegian Wood’ in his description of Toru Watanabe’s encounter with Naoko in the meadow, and her talk of the mysterious ‘field well’ – an image of the infinite, unbounded abyss, or  ‘Devouring Mother Void’, which the egotist so greatly fears and that inspires such cruelty, lust and resentment when negated. This is a theme that recurs in his other works, and in which we find the essence of his writing – a symbolic juxtaposition of the everyday, the mythical and the fantastic that by turns intrigues, inspires, teases, horrifies and plays with the imagination. Read This Article ➤

Feature  StudioONE 
‘The Plains Indians,’ America’s Early Artists, at the Met 
Photography by
Marnie Rogers

This show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art includes about 130 pieces of some of the earliest surviving art by Native Americans. Extracts From A New York Times Review:— Some of the earliest surviving art by native North Americans left America long ago. Soldiers, traders and priests, with magpie eyes for brilliance, bundled it up and shipped it across the sea to Europe. Painted robes, embroidered slippers and feathered headdresses tinkling with chimes found their way into cupboards in 18th-century London and Paris, and lay there half-forgotten. Now, in “The Plains Indians: Artists of Earth and Sky” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, some of those wondrous things have come home. Read This Article ➤
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Column  In Between  Julia Ferrari

FEAR OF CHANGE


Recently I went down to Boston to pick up the finished exhibit: “The Whole Art of Language: Julia Ferrari and Dan Carr’s Presses at Golgonooza,” which was up for a time at the Massachusetts College of Art & Design. Everything was packed and waiting for me. In fact, everything could have come back to me months ago, as one friend had offered to take it back for me. I however, wanted the experience of it coming full circle, with my returning to take it home, no matter how long I was delayed because of the harsh cold winter. So as the snows melted and a Boston visit became more favorable, a nearby friend who wanted a chance to visit the city too, offered to drive and we journeyed down together. Just before leaving, a Raven called out and I looked up to see it fly low over the peak of my roof-top, as if alerting me to the potential of the day ahead.


We arrived in the city finding a rare place to park at an open meter that still had an hour and 24 minutes left for us. At the college, after checking all the most fragile objects in their boxes, especially the type, I took everything down to street level while my friend got the car. The contents of this compact library cart was a representation of the creative life of me and Dan Carr (my partner in business and life who passed away) which had its roots in Boston where we met at his print shop on Sherman Street in Charlestown, in 1977. As I stood there looking out at the familiar sights of the city everywhere I turned, I felt the essence once again of my time and my beginnings with Dan. Just being in Boston makes me remember our life there, the excitement of adventures found there. I had felt energized, fulfilled and completed by the partnership of creativity and mutual interests. Of course like all relationships there were those things that were not so good, where we each battled our own problems, but those things can be challenging for all of us and as a mere 20 some year old, I had many lessons to learn. Read This Article

 

Column  Vermont Diary

Being anti-GMO is conducting a ‘War on Science’


A recent edition of a national magazine has just equated concern about GMOs with the following lists of ‘beliefs’ in an article called ‘The War on Science.’ I’ll state the name of the magazine lower down this Dairy, but here is what being anti-GMO is compared with:—


Moon Landing [denial of]

Evolution [denial of]

Flat Earth [believed in]

Dinosaurs in Eden [with people]

Global Warming [denial of]

Vaccination [anti]


Somewhere in the middle of their list they added GMOs [resentment of] though mentioned that 64  countries have banned or severely limited GMO products the magazine stated that there is “no evidence that GMOs are harmful to human health.”


Thoughts:


1)the obvious one is that there is no scientific proof that GMOs are benign to human beings either, and


2)there is evidence of evisceration of communities of natural pollinating insects such as bees by combining GMOs with pesticides and herbicides.


3)There is no scientific proof that interactions in the food chain will not affect human beings.


  1. 4)Finally, are we just concerned about ourselves? As in being good stewards on the planet, rather than merely and temporarily profitable manipulators?


And the name of the magazine was... Read Vermont Diary