Dec. 24, 1998

Midwinter Blues

by Langston Hughes

The Oxen

by Thomas Hardy


Poem: "Midwinter Blues," by Langston Hughes, from The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes (Vintage Classics, 1995), and "The Oxen," by Thomas Hardy (1840-1928).

Itís CHRISTMAS EVE today, and for many people tonight is the start of Christmas celebrations.

Itís the birthday of choreographer ROBERT JOFFREY, born Abdullah Jafa Bey Khan in Seattle, Washington, in 1930, founder of the Joffrey Ballet in 1956.

Itís the birthday of journalist ISIDOR FEINSTEIN, better known as I.F. Stone, born 1907 in Philadelphia. He worked as a journalist in Philadelphia and New York City for various newspapers in the 1930s and 40s, and then started his own weekly publication, I.F. Stoneís Weekly in 1953, publishing political commentary.

Itís the birthday of jazz drummer BABY DODDS, born Warren Dodds in New Orleans in 1898, one of the first jazz drummers on record and drummer on classic recordings made by Louis Armstrong, Jelly Roll Morton, and Baby Doddsí brother Johnny Dodds.

It was on this day in 1822 that Clement Moore wrote his famous Christmas poem, "A Visit from St. Nicholas," better known as "íTwas the Night Before Christmas."

Itís the birthday of poet and writer MATTHEW ARNOLD, born 1822 in Middlesex, England.

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




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