R > G … Inherited wealth is outpacing growth in the economy, says Thomas Piketty in his Capital in the 21st Century. Even the Democrats have seized on income disparity as one of the nation’s biggest issues … Meanwhile the Republicans continue to stick their trunks in the mud, sorting out diamonds. And the Greens are, at best, a state party pretending to be national. But social justice is a key pillar of the international Green movement … I don’t need a French economist to break this news to me. I’ve been watching America’s income slide for most of my life, born as I was in the post-war boom. But data helps.
PLP … I have spent many years working with a wonderful collaborative based out of Montrose that assists in public lands issues in our region. Among my fellow collaborators were two wonderful women – Lynn Hoyt and Jo Gore. They had a memorial for them – even a bench, especially dedicated to Lynn, at the ranger center on 25 Road over on the Delta side of the Uncompahgre Plateau … I wanted to honor them both – Lynn for her enviro passion and her school-teacher knack for simplifying things; Jo for her ranch wife honesty and her ready defense of agriculture. Both were eminently likeable human beings, grandmothers, wise ones. Working in a collaborative with the two of them was part of my deep training in reaching consensus through compromise – in its original Latin sense of “sending something forward with others” … I was delighted when Stu Krebs asked me to share Gary Snyder’s Prayer for the Great Family at the service.
MARK VARIEN … It was a lovely wild card I drew one Seventies’ blue day, hitching up to Telluride from Flag. A ride with a brilliant young “archie” (archaeologist) working on the McPhee project in Dolores … The same (now Dr.) Mark Varien of Cortez was announced as executive vice president for the new Crow Canyon Research Institute at the Society for American Archaeology’s annual meeting in Austin, Texas this past spring. Congratulations, old friend.
TCHO MOKACCINO … Organic, Fair Trade, Kosher – of course. That’s a given for a San Francisco product. You find that in the small print. What’s seriously knockout is that Seriously Chocolate and Blue Bottle Coffee have teamed up to create a specialty cacao bar laced with caffeine, one of the American mainstream’s “legal” drugs. The wafer thin box is a back-fold, 3” x 3”, with a cereal top tab slot lock – so it looks unique … But the taste. Omygoddess. Creamy. With an aroma. Warm. Dense. Delicious. “Carmelized milk chocolate [with] lingering notes of toasted malt.” … Highly recommended by #1 daughter
SPEAKING OF IRIS … Goddess of the Rainbow and my eldest child born in Montrose after an emergency ride over Dallas Divide, Iris Willow has her own art start-up these days out in old San Fran, making enamel jewelry and selling via Etsi on-line … Check it out. www.iriswillow.com
BOB KING … Last week Kyle Harvey and Danny Rosen of Lithic Press hosted a reading at the Cavalcade in Fruita for Bob King – the Greeley sparkplug for the Colorado Poets Center. And for the last several years editing a quarterly on-line newsletter, keeping the poetry community around the state in touch and up to date … As well as a fine poet. His Old Man Laughing (Ghost Road Press) is a classic in my library. And a master storyteller performer … He was true to form when he took the stage at the Cavalcade. I introduced him with the poem below He had us laughing about life. About his cancer. Clapping and carrying on. Except for one deeply sad poem, where all we could do was walk along with him in silence
CROWS … Our Wildlife boys over in neighboring Utah have approved crow hunting. Farmers there don’t like crows cause they can “damage crops” and some folks here say crows rob eggs in sage grouse nests … Let’s hope they can tell the difference between a murder of crows and a federally endangered raven. Crows and ravens about look the same to me.
WEEKLY QUOTA … “Somewhere on Earth, on land, one quarter of all our carbon emissions released through fossil fuel emissions is disappearing. Wouldn’t it be nice to know where?” – senior NASA scientist David Crisp
THE TALKING GOURD
Old enough to remember the first
King Kong flick
Bob’s an academic who broke
out & went on the run
Escaped the ivy’s net
to retire into relevance
Setting up a statewide poets’
directory on-line &
delivering 24 issues of a quarterly
newsletter — interviews, reviews
recently published, contests
& a column or two
Freely laboring behind the scenes
to link poets to poets
& give everyone in Colorado
a voice at the table
That’s why we lift a royal toast
not to some
beating his own hairy chest
but a wise-assed old groucho
teaching us how to laugh
at hippies, holly rollers
& big cigars