Monthly Archives: August 2009

HISTORY by ‘Ironquill’


Over the infinite prairie of level eternity,
          Flying as flies the deer,
Time is pursued by a pitiless, cruel oblivion,
          Following fast and near.

Ever and ever the famishing coyote is following
          Patiently in the rear;
Trifling the interval, yet we are calling it “History” —
          Distance from wolf to deer.

coyote_in_field

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Filed under AMERICANA, History, Kansas, Poetry

WHY COMMENT?


Artwork by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

Artwork by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

In this post I will share a few of my views on blog commenting.

My hope is that people will add their thoughts on commenting and help grow this list!

You never know who is reading– Not that I’m grandiose enough to believe that the Obama staff is taking cues from me, but It’s obvious to those who keep track of ‘hits’ that many people are visiting that never comment.

Make friends and contacts– I’ve made friends by commenting that I certainly would have never met otherwise. Also, blogging is networking activity, if you want it to be. Some people who blog about business have used links to ‘sell’ themselves. When you comment on other’s blogs, and they get to know you, people will click your link to see what you post.

Hone your skills– I’m not a writer, obviously. So commenting and getting feedback is essential to my improving whatever skills I do have. If I find myself lacking ideas for new posts, I’ll visit another blog and comment. Many times my comment(s) will inspire a post. If the place I commented inspired me to be there and comment, it’s good for me to see what they do.

I find the other commentators that I like usually keep it short, concise and to the point.

Get a fresh perspective– If I always read, post and comment at the same place, with the same people all the time, I eventually start to write just like the others there. If I only echo those around me, I’ve unconsciously became scroll-over material! Being unpredictable, without being shocking or offensive, is a great way to be remembered and make an impact.

It‘s the right thing to do– When I attempted my first blog, I found myself disappointed at the lack of participation. Why? I centered my thoughts around my blog, and my blog only. I never took the time to go and comment on other’s sites. Give yourself away, if you do, you’ll get more back! But…remember what you give will come back to you. Treat others as you wish to be treated. If you do these things, I strongly believe you will get more comments yourself.  ~sekanblogger~

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Filed under Artwork, BLOGS

THE WASHER WOMAN’S SONG ~ by Ironquill


  (this poem and photo are both by famous Fort Scott Kansas residents, from different times and backgrounds)

In a very quiet spot,

Photo by Gordon Parks

Photo by Gordon Parks

In a very humble cot,

     In the suds and in the soap,
     Worked a woman full of hope;
Working, singing, all alone,
In a sort of undertone
     “With the Savior for a friend,
     He will keep me to the end.”

Sometimes happening, along,
I had heard the semi-song,
     And I often used to smile,
     More in sympathy than guile;
But I never said a word
In regard to what I heard,
     As she sang about her friend
     Who would keep her to the end.

Not in sorrow nor in glee
Working all day long was she,
     As her children, three or four,
     Played around her on the floor;
But in monotones the song
She was humming all day long:
     “With the Savior for a friend,
     He will keep me to the end.”

It ‘s a song I do not sing,
For I scarce believe a thing
     Of the stories that are told
     Of the miracles of old;
But I know that her belief
Is the anodyne of grief,
     And will always be a friend
     That will keep her to the end.

Just a trifle lonesome she,
Just as poor as poor could be;
     But her spirits always rose,
     Like the bubbles in the clothes,
And, though widowed and alone,
Cheered me with the monotone,
     Of a Savior and a friend
     Who would keep her to the end.

I have seen her rub and scrub,
On the washboard in the tub,
     While the baby, sopped in suds,
     Rolled and tumbled in the duds;
Or was paddling in the pools,
With old scissors stuck in spools;
     She still humming of her friend
     Who would keep her to the end.

Human hopes and human creeds
Have their root in human needs;
     And I should not wish to strip
     From that washerwoman’s lip
Any song that she can sing,
Any hope that songs can bring;
     For the woman has a friend
     Who will keep her to the end.

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Filed under History, Kansas, Poetry

Hand-Made Wooden Lunchbox


I’m guessing this lunch box was made in the 1930’s or 1940’s. It just looks like something from the great depression.

Hand-made lunch box

Hand-made lunch box

 Obviously a hand-made lunchbox. I suppose you could call it a “primitive”.  If you are a lunch-box collector, I would imagine this piece would be a very nice addition to your collection.

Dovetailed - slides open!

Dovetailed – slides open!

 I personally don’t think of this box as primitive, by any means. The craftsmanship is exceptional. The entire thing is solid pine. Twelve pieces very carefully cut and fitted. The dovetails slide effortlessly! The top pieces have some odd angles as well as the male dovetail slides.

Cotton strap for thermos

Cotton strap for thermos

 Notice the handy-dandy rope handle. On the inside of the top is a cotton strap to hold a milk bottle or thermos. The little latch on the end of the top holds the top and bottom together. I have no idea if this was carried to work or school, and the paper label on the top has a name penciled-in that is now unreadable. I found this at a rummage sale near Galesburg Kansas, years ago. The nice lady did not know any history behind this. I think I gave four dollars for it.

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Filed under AMERICANA, History, Kansas, ODDITIES, Southeast Kansas