Sunday

Mar. 15, 1998

Aging

by Stephen Dunn

SUNDAY 3/15

Today's Reading: "Aging" by Stephen Dunn from LOOSESTRIFE: POEMS, published by W.W. Norton & Company (1996).

It is the IDES OF MARCH, and on this day in 44 B.C., Julius Caesar ignored the warnings of his fortune-teller and went out in public to attend a meeting in the Pompeii theater. He had recently compared himself to Alexander the Great and was planning the conquest of Parthia, and many Romans thought he had to be stopped. Marcus Brutus stabbed him, and Caesar fell with the words, "You, too, Brutus?"

The 15th of March is also the day in Hinckley, Ohio when THE BUZZARDS RETURN from their wintering grounds in the Great Smoky Mountains. Spring is just around the corner.

It's the birthday in Brooklyn, 1933, of Supreme Court Justice RUTH BADER GINSBURG. She graduated at the top of her class from Columbia Law School in 1959 and received no job offers; most firms were leery of hiring a woman.

TSAR NICHOLAS abdicated the Russian throne on this day in 1917, ending 300 years of the Romanov dynasty. During WWI he took command of the Russian army and turned a deaf ear to the peasants who were starving. During the 1917 food riots in St. Petersburg he ordered his soldiers to shoot the peasants, but they refused. He tried unsuccessfully to give the crown to his brother, then fled Moscow.

It's the birthday of the trumpeter and big-band leader, HARRY JAMES, born in Albany, Georgia, 1916. His father taught him how to play trumpet and by the age of 12 he was in front of his own band. The Harry James Orchestra hits included "You Made Me Love You," "I Don't Want to Walk without You" and "I've Heard That Song Before."

BASEBALL WENT PROFESSIONAL on this day in 1869. The game had been around since the 1820s and consisted of a confederation of clubs in the east, none of whom paid their players. The first team to go pro was the Cincinnati Red Stockings.

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

 









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