1. A lovely poem from one of my favorite poets:
Little Dog’s Rhapsody in the Night (Percy Three)
He puts his cheek against mine
and makes small, expressive sounds.
And when I’m awake, or awake enough
he turns upside down, his four paws
in the air
and his eyes dark and fervent.
Tell me you love me, he says.
Tell me again.
Could there be a sweeter arrangement? Over and over
he gets to ask it.
I get to tell.
~ Mary Oliver
2. This Sunday I’m taking a painting class at a local artists’ center. I’ve been dabbling with paints on and off for a year or so. (More off than on lately due to the writing classes I’m teaching. ) I have had no formal training whatsoever, unless you count the scribbles I did in grade school.
Why the interest in painting? Good question! On the way to work, I walk by the most interesting juxtaposition of pointy church spire and tall pine tree amid the symmetry of rounded brownstone roofs. From the moment I noticed it, I thought, I want to paint that. I don’t know why I thought that given I… A. didn’t own any paint, B. always lose at Pictionary due to my inability to draw the most basic of stick figures. I’ve been trying to work up to my opus, starting with the Crayola medium and watching a lot of Bob Ross. I decided it was time to learn how to use the brushes correctly. When a Groupon came for a still life class, I signed up. Let’s hope there are no budding Cezannes to make me feel even more ridiculous. (Excuse me, what is this called? The one shaped like a fan? Ahh, a fan brush, you say?)
3. Nothing comes between Reggie and a treat. Nothing.
4. Recently I met Lauren through the blogosphere and was so taken with her photos. I find them very moving, which I expect is the point – to evoke a response from the viewer. Kind of what I hope my fiction writing does. I thought I’d share her site with you because I know many of you are very interested in photography. Here’s a lovely shot of the Brooklyn Bridge.
5. As part of the Turner Classic Movies Film Festival, TCM is hosting screenings cities around the country. Each city will have a different film with a special guest to kick off the night. Here in New York next week is the film The Manchurian Candidate (1962, nominated for 2 Oscars). For classic film fans, like me, it’s exciting to have the opportunity to see the movie on the big screen. And The Manchurian Candidate is quite a Cold War thriller with Frank Sinatra, Laurence Harvey and Janet Leigh. American soldiers are captured by Chinese communists during the Korean War, and one is programmed to become an assassin; two years later, he’s ordered to kill a presidential candidate. Even though it’s rooted in the McCarthy era and forever linked to President Kennedy’s death, it manages to feel relevant and contemporary. As a bonus, the film is going to be introduced by Angela Lansbury who played Eleanor Iselin, the senator’s wife in league with foreign communists. And believe it or not – the show is free!