Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Any Given Name

by Michael Hofferber. Copyright © 1998. All rights reserved.

What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other word would smell as sweet.

Juliet, upon her balcony, wishes Romeo would give up his family name and change it to some other. He, in turn, offers to be "new baptiz'd" with some other name than Montague? But does he follow through? Does he change either his Romeo or his Montague? Naw.

Not for love or for the sake of their two warring families do the
star-crossed lovers change their names. They'll go to any extreme, even drink poison if they must, to avoid that end.

What's in a name? Just about everything.

Continued at... Any Given Name.
Rural Delivery
Outrider Reading Group
Out of the Past
Artwork: What's In A Name?

Friday, May 16, 2014

Canine Alter Ego

by Michael Hofferber. Copyright © 1992. All rights reserved.

When Ulysses, that ancient Greek king, returned home in disguise after being on the road for twenty years only his faithful dog -- Argos -- recognized the hero in beggar's clothing.
External trappings don't mean much to the canine species. Rich or poor, famous or ordinary, your dog still responds to character and performance. There's no fooling Fido.
"The fact that dogs haven't given up on humans completely and still make people their friends shows there must be some hope for the human race," said President Lyndon Johnson, whose beagles stood by him despite that awful ear pulling.

This ability to see beneath the surface of humans probably explains why dogs, almost invariably, resemble their masters.

Continued at... Canine Alter Ego.

Rural Delivery
Pet Supplies
Where Did Dogs Come From?
Artwork: Elizabeth Taylor with Little Black Dog.

Monday, May 12, 2014

In The Morning

by Michael Hofferber. Copyright © 1996. All rights reserved.

A cat herds you toward the kitchen, crying breakfast. You heat water on the stove, break eggs over a frying pan, pour milk from a carton.

The kitchen windows are dark and reflective. Hold a hand against the glass and look outside. Skies are clear. No sign of those showers. There's the moon, a soap shaving hanging above the horizon with Venus, the morning star.

A warm mug of coffee. A newspaper. Livestock and grain prices. These are morning matters.

Continued at... In The Morning.

Rural Delivery
Artwork: Crescent Moon and Venus by John K. Nakata.
Outrider Books
Outrider Reading Group
The Nature Pages

Friday, May 2, 2014

Born To Be Rural

by Michael Hofferber. Copyright © 1992. All rights reserved.

It makes a difference what you're born to, of course, whether its the black sod of Kansas prairies or the slick sidewalks of Fifth Avenue. Places put things in your head like those silly tunes that you hear once and can't shake. They get in your dreams and wake you in the morning. You find yourself humming them in the shower, at breakfast, on the job. Who can say why?

The song of open spaces stuck with me early on, and though I've known my share of cities -- Kansas City, London, New York, Seattle -- it's in rural places that I've been most at home: wheatfields on the Palouse, the lush dairylands of Tillamook, wind-swept high desert country on the Snake River Plain, the timbered Ochocos of central Oregon....

Continued at... Born To Be Rural.

Rural Delivery
Artwork: The Edge of Town by Steve Smith.
Outrider Books
Outrider Reading Group
The Nature Pages
Farm Supply