Sunday, June 20, 2021

Adam Ferguson born on June 20, 1723; Scottish historian and philosopher; noted figure of the Scottish Enlightenment; called “father of modern sociology” for his influence on the field; author of Essay on the History of Civil Society



Lillian Hellman born on June 20, 1905; American playwright and screenwriter; Toys in the Attic, The Children’s Hour and The Little Foxes; she was blacklisted by Hollywood after she refused to answer when questioned by the House Un-American Activities Committee




In 2002, a UN General Assembly resolution designates June 20, the anniversary of the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, as World Refugee Day



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HAPPY FATHER’S DAY 2021



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A Poem for National Watch Day

June 19th is National Watch Day. It was launched in 2017 as part of a celebration of the history and art of watchmaking at Nordstrom department stores.

German inventor Peter Heinlein invented the mainspring, and by 1524 he was producing small portable watches worn on a chain around the neck. In 1675, pocket watches that were small enough to fit in a pocket arrived, popularized by Charles II of England, but they weren’t very accurate. In the 1750s, a lever escapement was added, making pocket watches that only lost a minute or two a day, but the hand-crafted watches were too expensive for most people. Pocket watches made from standardized parts arrived in 1857, making durable and accurate watches affordable for almost everyone. In the last years of the 19th century, the first attempts to standardize time were made. The first ‘modern’ wristwatch was made for the Queen of Naples in 1812, and wristwatches were primarily worn by women, until they began to be issued to military men in the First World War so they could keep their hands free while checking the time. Electric watches were introduced in the 1950s, and the quartz watch in 1969, which made watches more shock absorbent, more accurate, and eliminated the need to wind the watch.

Danusha Laméris (1971 – ) is a poet and teacher who lives in California. Her first poetry collection, The Moons of August, won the Autumn House Press poetry prize in 2014. Her second book, Bonfire Opera, was published in 2020, and Laméris also won the Lucille Clifton Legacy Award that year.

To read “The Watch” by Danusha Laméris, click:

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World Tesselation Day

Today is World Tesselation Day, started in 2016 by Emily Grosvenor, author of Tessalation!, a children’s book about tesselations (patterns) in nature; she chose June 17 because it is the birthday of M.C. Escher, famous for the complicated patterns in his prints and drawings.

Amit Majmudar (1979 – ) American diagnostic nuclear radiologist, novelist, and poet born in Cleveland, Ohio, the son of immigrants. Poet Zara Raab describes his poetry as able to “reveal tenderness in their humanity and the precision of a surgeon in their details.” His poetry collection 0˚, 0˚ was a finalist for a Poetry Society of America’s Norman Faber First Book Award, and his collection Heaven and Earth was chosen for a Donald Justice Prize

To read Amit Majmudar’s poem, “Pattern and Snarl” click

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A Poem for World Sea Turtle Day

World Sea Turtle Day began being promoted by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on June 16, 2014. Sea Turtles are among the oldest living creatures, having been in existence at least 100 million years. There are seven species of Sea Turtles, and all of them are under threat of extinction, due to humans hunting them for their eggs, meat, and shells, and environmental deterioration. Though international trade in all seven species is banned, poachers continue to illegally kill them and steal their eggs. The Hawksbill and Kemp’s species are currently at the greatest risk of disappearing forever.

Linda Hogan (1947 – ) is an American poet, storyteller, academic, playwright, novelist, short story writer, and environmentalist. She is the author of several poetry collections, including Rounding the Human Corners; The Book of Medicines, which received the Colorado Book Award and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award; and Seeing Through the Sun. She is currently writer-in-residence for the Chickasaw Nation. In 2007 she was inducted into the Chickasaw Hall of Fame. Her other honors and awards include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation, the Henry David Thoreau Prize for Nature Writing, a Lannan Literary Award for Poetry, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Native Writers Circle of the Americas. Hogan has taught at the Indian Arts Institute and the University of Colorado, where she is a professor emerita. She lives in Colorado.

To read Linda Hogan’s “Song for the Turtles in the Gulf” click:

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A World of Dew

Kobayashi Issa (1763-1828) was born as Kobayashi Nobuyuki on June 15, 1763; Japanese poet who used ‘Issa’ as his pen name (meaning cup of tea); one of the ‘Great Four’ haiku masters, with Bashō, Buson, and Shiki. He wrote over 20,000 haiku, and is also known for his drawings, which frequently illustrated his poetry. He was a lay Buddhist priest.

To read Issa’s poem, “A World of Dew” click:

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TCS: The Blood Shines Inside Us

Good Morning

______________________________

Welcome to The Coffee Shop, just for you early risers
on Monday mornings. This is an Open Thread forum,
so if you have an off-topic opinion burning a hole in
your brainpan, feel free to add a comment.

______________________________

Blood is that fragile scarlet tree we carry within us.
 – Osbert Sitwell

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Sunday, June 13, 2021

Ibn Battuta sets off on June 13, 1325, from his home in Tangiers on a hajj, or pilgrimage, to Mecca, a journey that would ordinarily take sixteen months. He will not see Morocco again for twenty-four years



Fanny Burney born on June 13, 1752; she became Madame d’Arblay, English author of journals, diaries, and novels; Evelina is a landmark in development of the novel of manners;  she also wrote a first person account of undergoing a mastectomy without anesthesia



The U.S. Post Office Department’s new Parcel Post service begins on June 13, 1913, without specifying exactly what could and could not be mailed via Parcel Post. After several children are “mailed” via Parcel Post (their parents paid for stamps, and in at least once case, postal insurance, and they were safely delivered by postal workers to visit their relatives), Postmaster General Albert S. Burleson announces a new rule in 1914 that all human beings are barred from being mailed, but a few children are still sent, until postal inspectors begin investigating violations of the rule. Today, you can mail live chickens and other poultry, assorted reptiles, and bees, but not children



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Saturday, June 12, 2021

Charles Kingsley, born June 12, 1819, British clergyman, historian, novelist, and reformer in the Christian socialism movement; author of the children’s classic, The Water Babies;  correspondent and friend of Charles Darwin



Brigid Brophy, born June 12, 1929, British author, critic, social reformer and animal rights activist; Hackenfeller’s Ape and Mozart the Dramatist



Orlando United Day, June 12, 2017, honored the memory of the 49 victims killed and in support of the survivors of the Pulse nightclub tragedy. A coalition event of the One Orlando Alliance, Orlando’s LGBTQ+ ‘Acts of Love and Kindness’ movement, with the governments of the City of Orlando and Orange County of Florida, now an annual day in Orlando, with programs and charitable events. Now an annual event



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TCS: Two More Poets, Six Poems, Shared Birthday

Good Morning

______________________________

Welcome to The Coffee Shop, just for you early risers
on Monday mornings. This is an Open Thread forum,
so if you have an off-topic opinion burning a hole in
your brainpan, feel free to add a comment.

______________________________

When you use the term minority or minorities
in reference to people, you’re telling them that
they’re less than somebody else.

– Gwendolyn Brooks

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