Monthly Archives: March 2019

Kirk Douglas on the “glories” of New York

 

 

“I find myself in Albuquerque. No work, no money. …. No Lindy’s. No Madison Square Garden. No Yogi Berra. …

“You know what’s wrong with New Mexico? Too much outdoors. Give me those eight spindly trees in front of Rockefeller Center any day. That’s enough outdoors for me. No subway smelling sweet, sour. … No more beautiful roar from eight million ants fighting, cursing, loving. No shows. No South Pacific No chic little dames across a crowded bar.”

 

— Chuck Tatum (Kirk Douglas), Ace In the Hole

 

 

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Ace in the Hole is a 1951 American film noir starring Kirk Douglas as a hard boiled, cynical reporter who stops at nothing to try to regain a job on a major newspaper. He has come west to New Mexico from New York City, out of money and options. He talks his way into a reporting job with a newspaper in Albuquerque.

Lindy’s was a restaurant chain in New York City famous for its cheesecake.

 
— posted by Roger W. Smith

   March 2019

Walt Whitman: simplicity and complexity

 

 

 

“No one makes craft, carefully wrought, seem more casual than Walt Whitman.”

 

— Richard Rhodes, How to Write: Advice and Reflections (New York: William Morrow and Company, 1995), pg. 12

 

 

A former friend of mine, the poet Charles Pierre, made a comment to me — I wish I could remember exactly what he said — to the effect that Walt Whitman is actually very difficult. Difficult for the reader, that is. That he presents a level of difficulty that requires acute understanding of? I think Pierre would have said: an understanding of what Whitman is doing; of his poetic technique, of his originality, poetic genius, and ingenuity. That Whitman, who seems on the surface so simple, is not really simple.

And yet, I find Whitman to be easy to become acquainted with and comprehend without necessarily being (as in the case of myself) expert at poetry. I “got” his poetry almost right away.

 
— Roger W. Smith

   February 2019