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Bob Dylan Follows Jean-Paul Sartre’s Existential Lead

October 21, 2016 3 Comments



The French writer Jean-Paul Sartre was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature on 22 October, 1964. He refused to accept the honor, as he had done with all honors in the past.  He wrote a detailed letter to the jury in Stockholm that arrived after they had confirmed his prize.  He listed personal reasons as well as objective reasons. He basically thought writers should write without any undue influence from any institution.  In his own words:

“The writer who accepts an honour of this kind involves as well as himself the association or institution which has honoured him,” he said at the time. “The writer must therefore refuse to let himself be transformed into an institution, even if this occurs under the most honourable circumstances, as in the present case.”

This existential Frenchman was the only literature laureate to refuse the honor until now. It appress that Bob Dylan has not returned the calls of the esteemed Swedish Academy since he was awarded the same prize.  Today he erased a mention of the prestigious prize from his website.  It appears that our famous existential poet is declining and going one step beyond his predecessor by making no comment on the matter. I think this is a perfect response from this rebel recluse who does exactly as he pleases.  He can well afford, like Mr Sartre before him, to rest on his hefty laurels.

This refreshing point of view on celebrity is blowin’ in the wind when the celebration of celebrities has become a full blown obsession.  Reality television and I don’t know what else, has brought us to worship fame for itself in the weirdest ways.  I have been listening to Bob’s music almost non stop this week, rediscovering the genius of his impressive timeless lyrics.  I have seen him perform three times, and am mighty glad I got that opportunity.  He is our troubadour, and he don’t need no stinking prizes.  I am highly amused at his attitude.  What do you think, gentle reader? He may still decide to show up at the ceremony.

Weekend Coffee Share, Of Poets And Politics

October 15, 2016 10 Comments

If we were having coffee I would invite you to sit down and tell me about your week over your favorite beverage. I am loaded with chai, roiboos, green, white, and herbal teas. For me, this season is perfect for jasmine roiboos. It is floral with a full rich flavor of harvest. Jasmine makes me swoon. Today is the full moon known as the hunter’s moon. There will be a lunar eclipse. With all that drama in the heavens I am sure some stories will be brewing down here on earth.  What is happening in your world?

The story we all want to bring to an end is the election. The population is weary. We can’t take much more of this bickering.  People are short-tempered about everything now.  Any social discourse can end in controversy for no reason.  I spent most of my time this week at home to try to avoid the total breakdown of society.  Of course, this tactic was futile.  I did write a few short poems, trying to get in the swing of a more productive practice as a poet. I am hoping to ease into a poem a day for life without setting a firm discipline…wondering if that will work.  I bid adieu to my Audible account without regret, after my free three-month trial.  Alexa is still able to read any book in my kindle library for which I purchase the audio component. Amazon has also launched a new free trial which I snapped up right away.  Prime members can now pay 7.99 a month for access to the entire catalog of music in the Amazon system.  This is very similar to the Apple music deal I took last year.  I will not keep this one after my free month either.  For the time being I am having Alexa play Bob Dylan songs. She can play his songs all day and never repeat herself.  I am thrilled to fill my home with the works of our new Nobel Prize winner, Bob.  In my youth I memorized all his songs and could play them on the guitar. He was an idol.  He is inspiring me now to practice being a poet.  His early songs are so funny and brilliant.  Many fit perfectly with this election too.  I am so glad he was not a lazy poet like I am.

The healthy trend continues in the kitchen.  We had a tasty walnut spinach nut loaf this week, and I found a recipe for nut crisp crackers I believe will be the bomb.  The only ingredients are ground up nuts of your choice and egg white.  I look forward to rolling some out next week because I think they will replicate those nut crisp commercial crackers I love.  I also discovered that the pesto shortbread dough makes a fine topping for savory cobbler dishes.  I think the nut crackers could go either sweet or savory as a crust on the top to add crunching excitement.  I am planning very nutty meals until all the old nuts have been consumed.  I will let you know what I learn about preparing and eating nuts. We will learn everything there is to know about nuts on November 9.  I wish everyone forbearance and wisdom.

To join the international coffee party this weekend click here.  Read, write, opine with a group of congenial writers of all kinds.

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