We should probably buy some carbon offsets for this past weekend. We did a lot of driving this weekend in pursuit of musical experiences. Last night it was Ben Folds, an hour away in St. Peter, and this afternoon it was the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra at the Ted Mann Concert Hall on the West Bank campus of the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. This afternoon's concert featured one of my favorite 20th century works, the Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings by Benjamin Britten, beautifully performed by tenor James Taylor and the orchestra's new principal horn, Bernhard Scully (formerly of the Canadian Brass). The Ted Mann is beautifully situated on a bluff above the Mississippi River, with a great view of Frank Gerhry's odd but compelling Weisman Art Museum across the river. Of course, because we would be inside at a concert all afternoon, the day turned beautiful and spring-like after a cool, damp morning.
The day started with a misty walk along the bluffs above the Cannon River in the Rice County Wilderness Area. The spring wildflowers are just starting to bloom. We saw bloodroot, hepatica, and these lone pasqueflowers. We also heard the loud percussion of a pileated woodpecker somewhere in the woods. Other than the woodpecker, a loud cardinal, and a pair of honking Canada geese, the woods were peaceful and still.
My poem " Phrasebook " has been published online in Ergon: Greek/American Arts and Letters .
The frontispiece from Countee Cullen's The Black Christ and Other Poems (1929). Illustration by Charles Cullen. Click to enlarge. On...
Here's the poem I wrote and read for the student-organized International Day of Peace gathering in Bridge Square on Wednesday, Septembe...
In early August, the director of the Northfield Public Library, Teresa Jensen, asked me to write a poem to be displayed prominently in the...