Saturday

May 10, 1997

The Railroad Blues

by Anonymous

SATURDAY 5/10

Today's Reading:"The Railroad Blues," also know as "The Cannon Ball Blues" by an anonymous author.

The Savannah Scottish Games and Highland Gathering takes place today in Savannah, Georgia.

Today is the Trillium Festival, a two-day celebration of Michigan wildflowers, beginning in Hoffmaster State Park, Muskegon, Michigan.

It was on this day in 1941 that the worst of the London Blitz occurred when 550 German bombers dropped 100,000 incendiary bombs.

In 1940 Hitler began his blitz of the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg---the neutral lowland states that stood between him and his sworn enemy, France. By doing this he was able to skirt France's "impenetrable" Maginot Line and eventually corner the Allies in Dunkirk.

It was on this same day in 1940 that Winston Churchill replaced Neville Chamberlain as British prime minister.

In 1933 on this day, the Nazis began burning books by "unGerman" writers such as Heinrich Mann and Erich Maria Remarque, author of ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT.

It's the birthday today of African-American dancer Judith Jamison, prima ballerina of the Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre. She was born in Philadelphia in 1944.

American playwright Arthur Kopit, who won recognition in 1962 for the Off-Broadway farce OH DAD, POOR DAD, MAMA'S HUNG YOU IN THE CLOSET AND I'M FEELING SO SAD. He was born in New York City in 1937.

Film Producer David O. Selznick (DINNER AT EIGHT; GONE WITH THE WIND; REBECCA) was born on this day in Pittsburgh, 1902.

It's the birthday of dancer Frederick Austerlitz, Fred Astaire (FLYING DOWN TO RIO; TOP HAT; SWING TIME), born in Omaha, Nebraska, In 1899.

Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®

 









«

»

  • “Writers end up writing stories—or rather, stories' shadows—and they're grateful if they can, but it is not enough. Nothing the writer can do is ever enough” —Joy Williams
  • “I want to live other lives. I've never quite believed that one chance is all I get. Writing is my way of making other chances.” —Anne Tyler
  • “Writing is a performance, like singing an aria or dancing a jig” —Stephen Greenblatt
  • “All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath.” —F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • “Good writing is always about things that are important to you, things that are scary to you, things that eat you up.” —John Edgar Wideman
  • “In certain ways writing is a form of prayer.” —Denise Levertov
  • “Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Let's face it, writing is hell.” —William Styron
  • “A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” —Thomas Mann
  • “Writing is 90 percent procrastination: reading magazines, eating cereal out of the box, watching infomercials.” —Paul Rudnick
  • “Writing is a failure. Writing is not only useless, it's spoiled paper.” —Padget Powell
  • “Writing is very hard work and knowing what you're doing the whole time.” —Shelby Foote
  • “I think all writing is a disease. You can't stop it.” —William Carlos Williams
  • “Writing is like getting married. One should never commit oneself until one is amazed at one's luck.” —Iris Murdoch
  • “The less conscious one is of being ‘a writer,’ the better the writing.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is…that oddest of anomalies: an intimate letter to a stranger.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is my dharma.” —Raja Rao
  • “Writing is a combination of intangible creative fantasy and appallingly hard work.” —Anthony Powell
  • “I think writing is, by definition, an optimistic act.” —Michael Cunningham
The Writer's Almanac on Facebook


The Writer's Almanac on Twitter

Subscribe to our daily newsletter for poems, prose and literary history every morning
An interview with Sharon Olds at The Writer's Almanac Bookshelf
Current Faves - Learn more about poets featured frequently on the show
O, What a Luxury

Although he has edited several anthologies of his favorite poems, O, What a Luxury: Verses Lyrical, Vulgar, Pathetic & Profound forges a new path for Garrison Keillor, as a poet of light verse. Purchase O, What a Luxury »