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  • Glenn Sonnenberg

Musings from the Bunker 1/23/21


Happy Weekend!


POETRY


I was particularly moved last week by this lovely poem, in the form of a letter from a woman to her late-brother:


WHAT THE LIVING DO

By Marie Howe

Johnny, the kitchen sink has been clogged for days, some utensil probably fell down there.

And the Drano won't work but smells dangerous, and the crusty dishes have piled up

waiting for the plumber I still haven't called. This is the everyday we spoke of.

It's winter again: the sky's a deep, headstrong blue, and the sunlight pours through

the open living-room windows because the heat's on too high in here and I can't turn it off.

For weeks now, driving, or dropping a bag of groceries in the street, the bag breaking,

I've been thinking: This is what the living do. And yesterday, hurrying along those

wobbly bricks in the Cambridge sidewalk, spilling my coffee down my wrist and sleeve,

I thought it again, and again later, when buying a hairbrush: This is it.

Parking. Slamming the car door shut in the cold. What you called that yearning.

What you finally gave up. We want the spring to come and the winter to pass. We want

whoever to call or not call, a letter, a kiss—we want more and more and then more of it.

But there are moments, walking, when I catch a glimpse of myself in the window glass,

say, the window of the corner video store, and I'm gripped by a cherishing so deep

for my own blowing hair, chapped face, and unbuttoned coat that I'm speechless:

I am living. I remember you.


MUSIC


“New Ansonia” by the Patchwork Jazz Orchestra in isolation (only a few minutes but really special): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXo0B_rHVgk


Bob Badal recommended the aria “Lascia ch'io pianga”, from Händel's opera Rinaldo). The version I’ve chosen is Voices of Music, on original instruments, with Kirsten Blaise, soprano: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EKo_EmfEPWs&list=PLwG9LBwHMOE7T3b_qeNxWqhx9UbOqwqjf&index=2&t=0s

BLOG AND LISTS

All the Musings (from last March to today) can be found here: https://glennsonnenbergblog.wixsite.com/mysite/about

By popular demand, also available at this site are the lists of movies, non-fiction books, fiction, published articles, and policy rants.

Best, Glenn

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