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The Little Review
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Poem for Wednesday and Washingtonian Afternoon


Power
By Adrienne Rich


Living in the earth-deposits of our history

Today a backhoe divulged out of a crumbling flank of earth
one bottle amber perfect a hundred-year-old
cure for fever or melancholy a tonic
for living on this earth in the winters of this climate.

Today I was reading about Marie Curie:
she must have known she suffered from radiation sickness
her body bombarded for years by the element
she had purified
It seems she denied to the end
the source of the cataracts on her eyes
the cracked and suppurating skin of her finger-ends
till she could no longer hold a test-tube or a pencil

She died a famous woman denying
her wounds
denying
her wounds came from the same source as her power.

--------

I was talking about this poem with ethelking earlier, so you all get to read it. The poem is from Rich's The Dream of a Common Language, one of the most influential books of poetry I have ever read.

I had a very nice Tuesday with friends -- first lunch with vertigo66 at Tara Thai, then a walk around Washingtonian Lake, and by the time I got to Target, perkypaduan was in that part of town and joined me. Since the news depressed me so much on Monday, I avoided reading about the Gulf of Mexico and the Middle East and instead focused on the good news that kids raised in lesbian households are comfortable and well-adjusted (CNN), and on new Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg, who set a Nationals single-game record for strikeouts and actually lived up to his advance hype (WashPost). Here are photos of the goslings at Washingtonian -- I was across the lake from them and only had the little camera, but they're adorable even from a distance, plus one more photo of the ducklings from a couple of weeks ago since I didn't see them this time:







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Evening TV, of course, was the season finale of Glee. I think next season my policy may be to mute the sound except when there is obviously a musical number going on, because as much as I enjoy the songs, that's how infuriating I find the characterizations particularly of the female characters and nearly always the people of color. If I wanted to watch a show about how white guys like Will and Finn are really wonderful, I'd watch...well, pretty much any other show on television. In fact, the preview for that Will Arnett-Keri Russell show looked more promising than anything I expect from Glee next season.

Okay, Sue Sylvester makes up for a very great deal, and complaints about how she can't live in a world where she can't pick on Will for tearing up as often as Michael Landon in a sweeps month episode of Little House on the Prairie almost makes it worth leaving the sound on. But we also get Will declaring love to Emma almost exactly the way Finn declares love to Rachel, as if Will and Finn are precisely the same age emotionally, and the staggering stupidity of the Quinn-Rachel-Shelby storyline, in which Quinn gives birth in record time, pouts prettily at the baby she's not going to keep, then goes back to glee club all smiles while Shelby, whose level of selfishness makes both Rachel and Kurt look mature and empathetic, blows off a relationship with the biological daughter who wants to be a part of her life for a brand new shiny non-biological daughter. It ruins my taste for "Faithfully."
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