Arts History Update for very late April 2014 by David Cummins
John Carey, The Unexpected Professor: An Oxford Life in Books (Faber and Faber 2014) $20.56 Kindle $10.86 is a memoir by the now 80 year old Merton Professor of English Literature Emeritus [since 2001] at St John’s College Oxford University his alma mater. While an outstanding don he was also a principal book reviewer for The London Times newspaper and so had a foot in grub street. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Carey_%28critic%29 He is currently writing a blog that includes references to interviews with him about this new book http://www.johncarey.org/
He is a fervent anti-class structure person in Britain having come up through Grammar Schools [equivalent in USA to public schools] rather than Public School [equivalent in USA to private academies, both expensive and exclusive and so unavailable to the middle class and below] and entered St John’s College Oxford University on scholarship for having outwitted his competitors. He took a “first” graduating at the top or in the top tier of his academic matriculating class. See one of his masterpieces The Intellectuals and the Masses: Pride and Prejudice Among the Literary Intelligentsia, 1880 – 1939 (Faber and Faber 1992) Texas Tech Library PR471.C37.
John Carey, What Good Are the Arts? (Oxford University Press 2006) $25.67 (paperback 2010) $16.16 Texas Tech Library BH39.C373 ABE Books in good condition $4.03, is a stimulating book in which he debunks some in-vogue high-culture claims about the arts while embracing the arts warmly, although his clear preference is for his own activity, the literary arts or literature. That is to be expected and allowed for without agreement or disagreement. The book is recommended.
He wrote an essay Down With Dons in 1974 that was so witty and spot on, that it became famous and an example of professorial debunking. It could only have been written by a paid up member of the academic cadre it affects to despise. Here it is in eleven pages http://www.johncarey.org/essays/downwithdons.pdf
The Lubbock Area Foundation periodically offers a day of tours to local organizations to which it has made grants, so that community members who sign up for the free tour can gain a deeper understanding about issues that affect lives in our community and can meet people who spend themselves in addressing those issues. On Thursday April 10, 2014 the Foundation led a group of people to Equine Refuge Services, Children’s Advocacy Center of the South Plains, and Link Ministries Tent City for Homeless and One-9 Sports Complex for Youth.
I was privileged to go on this tour and highly recommend a future tour. One does gain a deeper understanding, and it is thrilling to witness the passionate commitment of the people who operate these programs. At the Children’s Advocacy Center, after hearing from Carmen Aguirre and her staff and touring the facility, two presentations were made one from Fritizi Cates representing High Point Village and another from Laurie Foster representing Backyard Mission.
http://www.refugeservices.org Horses and hippo therapy and equine psycho-therapy lets people with physical and mental disabilities find and share an ability with a responsive animal that offers an opportunity for a unique relationship. Equine Refuge Services is located at 8405 County Road 2500 which is also described as 8405 South Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, reached by traveling south on Interstate Highway 27 to 82nd Street and turn east on 82nd Street to MLK Blvd and turn south two blocks where Equine Refuge Services is the 40 acre spread of barns, stables and paddocks on the east side of MLK. The directors and owners are a couple Patti and Randy Mandrell.
http://www.safeplace4kids.org Sexual abuse, violent and neglectful care, and just plain awful behavior toward children finds a response at the Children’s Advocacy Center of the South Plains 720 Texas Avenue with a 24/7 staff that immediately offers shelter, safety, structured and careful counseling, solace for traumatized children, and more.
http://www.linkministries.org Tent City for the Homeless is now called High Cotton Genesis Program, on the east side of Avenue A at 13th Street. Link Ministries now owns the retired cotton delinting plant and cottonseed oil plant properties all the way from 13th Street to 19th Street and the One-9 Sports Complex is located at 205 East 19th Street on the south end of the property. In between those two locations is the Link Ministries administrative offices at 1701 Avenue A. The director is Les Burrus who might be described as a no nonsense compassionate man who helps people earn their accommodations and services and gain self-respect while becoming a member of a living community in which they can find safety, assured support, and rest from the constant stress.
http://www.highpointvillage.org High Point Village at 10911 Slide Road is an activity center for Autism spectrum, Down Syndrome and similarly affected people, with plans for building a residential community on a 42 acre donated tract of land.
http://www.backyardmission.org/ Backyard Mission at 8205 Quincy Avenue helps people with homes that have serious issues by making free repairs to roofing, siding, windows, plumbing and other problems to get people into a livable state within their own homes. The workers are volunteers and the materials are either donated or purchased with contributions so it’s a self-funded pay as you go activity with no debt.
The Lubbock Area Foundation http://www.lubbockareafoundation.org/ started in 1981 and now has a $32 million endowment the net income from which is granted to various organizations and activities within the area. It is a community foundation for the Texas South Plains located at 2509 80th Street.
Poetry is words with meaning crafted to reveal that meaning directly into the reader’s imagination, and when read expressively by the author of those words, can be a wondrous experience. It will happen again on Friday April 25, 2014 at 7:30 pm at First Unitarian Universalist Church of Lubbock 2801 42nd Street by poet and reader Larry D. Thomas http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larry_D._Thomas This is a free event and the public is invited, refreshments and a book signing for purchasers afterward. His website is http://www.larrydthomas.com
Thomas was born in Haskell, educated in Midland and Brownwood and the University of Houston, service in the Navy as a counselor at the Navy Corrections Center, followed by a career as a probation counselor for Harris County (Houston) Texas. He now lives in Alpine Texas. He was the 2008 Texas Poet Laureate. His current book of poetry is The Lobsterman’s Dream [Poems of the Coast of Maine] (El Grito del Lobo Press 2014 at 48 pages with woodcuts by Clarence Wolfshotl $23) and he will read from this collection.
Texas Tech Library has three collections of his poetry Amazing Grace (Texas Review Press 2001) PS3620.H63 A43 Where Skulls Speak Wind (Texas Review Press 2004) PS3620.H63 W48 and New and Selected Poems (Texas Christian University Press 2008) PS3620.H63 A6.
He publishes digitally online, an example being Far (West Texas) (2011) [nine short poems in chapbook format illustrated by croppings from photographs of the historic Kokernot 06 Ranch http://www.dianelacy.com/history.html by his wife Lisa Thomas] publisher is Right Hand Pointing http://www.righthandpointing.net and here are the poems https://sites.google.com/site/larrydthomasfar/ that include:
parsimony is mayor, judge, and governor; politics, the paring down by sun and wind to dust
One has several responses, starting with halleluiah and ending with getting in the car and heading for Alpine. At Right Hand Pointing you can also read Thomas’s Plain Pine (2008) The Circus (2009) Five Lavender Minutes of an Afternoon (2010) Social Networks (2012) Colors (2013) and The Red, Candle-lit Darkness (2013).
Other literary events open to the public and held at First Unitarian Universalist Church http://www.uulubbock.org include an occasional Nighthawks Reading by authors http://www.richardjespers.com/2/post/2013/11/honors-and-readings.html and you can get on its mailing list at the Jespers website that discloses the earlier November 14, 2013 free reading event.
How does poesy arrive in the mind of a poet? William Logan, Guilty Knowledge Guilty Pleasure: The Dirty Art of Poetry (Columbia University Press 2014) 344 pages $35 http://cup.columbia.edu/book/978-0-231-16686-7/guilty-knowledge-guilty-pleasure His previous book Our Savage Art: Poetry and the Civil Tongue (Columbia University Press 2009) is at Texas Tech Library PS323.5 L644
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service lists lesser prairie-chicken as a threatened species and finalizes a special rule endorsing a Landmark State Conservation Plan on March 27, 2014. The threatened category is a category below that of an endangered species. Hopefully the measures taken to preserve and reclaim habitat for the birds will be sufficient so that the species won’t become endangered. West Texas and the Panhandle South Plains region were once a habitat for this bird, so this listing as a threatened species is pertinent to landowners and ecologists in this region. http://www.fws.gov/mountain-prairie/pressrel/2014/03272014_service_lists_lesser_prairie_chicken_as_threatened_species.php There was a contentious public hearing held in Lubbock on February 11, 2013 at Lubbock Memorial Civic Center Banquet Hall, that I attended https://www.fws.gov/southwest/es/LPC.html Many landowners have been paid federal funds to take conservation measures that had other beneficial effects but would also help toward survival of lesser prairie-chickens. To date those measures haven’t been successful in halting the diminishing stock of birds. http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/huntwild/lesserprairiechicken/
Endangered Species Act of 1973 as amended to date http://www.fws.gov/laws/lawsdigest/esact.html
The Colorado River of Texas rises in eastern Dawson County near the unincorporated town of Welch and flows east southeast through the state capital at Austin and on to the Gulf of Mexico at Matagorda Bay. A series of dams create the Highland Lakes http://highlandlakes.net/ and the Lower Colorado River Authority http://www.lcra.org is the manager of the river for that section. The Highland Lakes include Lake Buchanan, Inks Lake, Lake Lyndon B Johnson, Lake Marble Falls, Lake Travis and Lake Austin. Some would include Town Lake now renamed Lady Bird Lake in Austin. Long before those bodies of water, dams on the Colorado produced Lake J B Thomas in Borden and Scurry Counties, Lake Colorado City, Champion Creek Reservoir, E V Spence Reservoir, and O H Ivie Reservoir on the upper Colorado. Major tributaries that flow into the central Colorado River are Concho River, Pecan Bayou, Llano River, San Saba River, and Pedernales River.
Margie Crisp, River of Contrasts The Texas Colorado (Texas A&M University Press 2012) 256 pages paperback includes 16 color photos and 61 color illustrations, a gorgeous book http://www.tamupress.com $29.95 at TAMU Press $23.39 Amazon.com $16.49 Kindle ABE Books new $24.50 incl s&h the website for the book is http://www.coloradorivertx.com/ website for Margie Crisp artist is http://www.margiecrisp.com/ Texas Tech Library Southwest Collection TEX 36 C719 C932 R621
This is how the Colorado River looks near its source http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Colorado_River_Borden_County_Texas_2011.jpg east of Lamesa south of Gail and west of Snyder.
There is theatre in rural west Texas. A Gem Dandy Theatre Ghost is a two act comedy written and directed by King Hill, playwright and producer of events, that will be performed Saturday April 26, 2014 at 7:30 pm and Sunday April 27 at 2:30 pm in the historic Gem Theatre (opened in 1915 as Claudia Theatre, then named Rialto Theatre, and then named Gem Theatre in the 1930s) at 120 North Trice Street in Claude Texas. Tickets are $10 adults $7 students and children phone 806-226-2187. The actors are members of the Claude Community Heritage Players. http://www.armstrongcountymuseum.org/ Hill is a theatre arts teacher at Ascension Academy in Amarillo at South Soncy Road and SW 45th Avenue, formerly a theatre arts teacher at Highland Park High School at 15300 E. Amarillo Boulevard.
Claude is 145 miles north northeast of Lubbock, take I-27 to Amarillo and then US Highway 287 east to Claude about a 2 hour 20 minute drive. Lodging in Claude is available at The Goodnight Inn and at L A Motel but you might try ranch lodging nearby at Bradley Ranch, Cameron Cattle Headquarters, or Dripping Springs Canyon Ranch. Amarillo hotels are about 24 miles west of Claude.
Bob Wills Day is Saturday April 26 at his hometown Turkey Texas but the run-up activities begin days earlier http://www.bobwillsday.com/vnews/display.v/ART/5328f2f6711b8 Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys [formerly the Light Crust Doughboys] made Texas Swing music popular http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bob_Wills