Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Let him who elevates himself above humanity . . . say, if he pleases, "I will never compromise"; but let no one who is not above the frailties of our common nature disdain compromise.Henry Clay, b. 12 April 1777
So, it was on this day in 1920 that my mom's big sister was born. Red-headed Dorothy Lea Wolfe. She had lots of beauty & lots of pain.
It's the birthday of Henry Clay, savvy Compromiser of Lexington, Kentucky. He was young Lincoln's 'beau ideal' of a politician. Just for you to know.
And it's Franklin D. Roosevelt's deathday. Imagine Americans' shock, hearing that news, that the President they'd known for 12 years was gone - and w/ a huge, whacking war still to be won.
Lilacs and redbuds, just as now, were festooning & purpling the yards 1920. 1777. 1945. 1861 (and 100 years later when the first - think of it, of 27-yr-old USSR pilot Yuri Gagarin, the first human allowed himself to be strapped into a rocket & sent up into space) - in the north & in the south, when patriotic hotheads fired their first volleys, thinking that they were doing, not treason, but a righteous & noble thing. And how could their lofty notion of the consequences - a nation in which states & individuals governed themselves, free of central command, free to buy and sell people, work 'em & breed 'em, as unusually clever, bipedal livestock - even resemble what really happened over the next four years? It couldn't. The future's always hidden 'round the bend.

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