#ROW80 9/7 & September

After yesterday waiting for the plumber, plus today waiting for the doctor, plus anticipation of tomorrow again waiting for the plumber, I have run out of steam. I therefore turn the blog over to the greatest American poet.

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Steeple of Arlington Street Church in Boston, ...
Steeple of Arlington Street Church in Boston, Massachusetts, viewed through autumn foliage of the Public Garden-- Image via Wikipedia

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September’s Baccalaureate
A combination is
Of Crickets—Crows—and Retrospects
And a dissembling Breeze

That hints without assuming–
An Innuendo sear
That makes the Heart put up its Fun
And turn Philosopher.

~ Emily Dickinson

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I just skimmed “A Valentine to Emily Dickinson Fans,” (link below), and found, not a Valentine, but a reference to “America’s greatest female poet,” and, though bone-tired, I must comment. That phrase appears in the introduction to the article, not in the article itself, so I don’t hold the author responsible (unless he says the same thing in his book). But really, we have been over this before. This is 2011, well past the time for praise qualified by gender. Do we see Walt Whitman called “America’s greatest male poet?” Or Shakespeare called “England’s greatest male dramatist?” We do not. If Dickinson is America’s greatest poet, as, of course, she is, say that. If she’s simply a great American poet, say that. If she’s second to Whitman (or whomever) in greatness, say that. But stop using the qualifier. Because I will see it, and I will continue to protest.

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Image by HouseOfScandal at en.wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia) [Public domain], from