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Monthly Archives: May 2014

Johnny Milkweed Seed Goes Into Business.


One of the spectacular sights in my Catskill home the first fall I lived there was the monarch migration; I live in an old woodlot between two old farm fields, which have sprung up in goldenrod and spiraea, and that September thousands of monarchs would be in these fields at any one time. I expected […]

Even the Hardware Stores.


On a long trip, the first thing you do when you get into town is get a place to stay; the second thing you do is take care of your horse. I had to take care of my bike. My bike had been making an odd clacking noise as I rode, and I kept looking […]

The Death Penalty in America.


So we headed off to a party in mid-city, where many of New Orleans’ civil rights lawyers and activists would be gathered. I had woken up that morning in a swamp, hadn’t showered since leaving Venice two days ago, and now was talking to people who had tried cases before the Supreme Court. Conversation was […]

First Hour in New Orleans and First Crawfish Boil


My host and I got into his little compact and drove to this crawfish boil, which was being held by the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center. This center sued in cases of housing discrimination (and just to remind you that this is still a problem I will note that the last president of […]

New Orleans!


The old River Road, entering into New Orleans, takes on the distinctive qualities of the roads of that great city: it becomes a six-lane divided boulevard, with the extreme lanes reserved for parking, the sort of streets that form the neighborhood boundaries throughout the city; and it takes on the name of St. Claude Avenue. […]

Shakespeare on the Night Before a Battle.


Now entertain conjecture of a time When creeping murmur and the poring dark Fills the wide vessel of the universe. From camp to camp, through the foul womb of night, The hum of either army stilly sounds, That the fixed sentinels almost receive The secret whispers of each other’s watch. Fire answers fire, and through […]

The Battle of New Orleans and Andrew Jackson.


A general atmosphere of dereliction seems to be the Chalmette Battlefield’s way of confessing that it merits only a cursory visit; and I did not give it more. A cracked pavement circles an irregularly mowed field, with faded placards indicating the positions and movements of troops during the battle; atop a rampart sat a few […]

In the Military Burying Ground.


I stopped off at the Chalmette battlefield, where took place the event typically called the Battle of New Orleans – in which General Andrew Jackson repulsed an invading British army as the last act of the War of 1812. Jackson was defending New Orleans – hence the traditional name of the battle – but it […]

Through Chalmette.


I was curious to see Chalmette.  I remember one time I was speaking with a woman in New York who said she was from New Orleans.  “New Orleans!”  I said.  “What part?”  She paused a bit and then said, “Just outside New Orleans, actually.  You probably wouldn’t know it.”  “I might,” I said.  “I know […]

Abandoned Church, St. Bernard Parish.