Feb. 21, 2000
Oranges and Lemons
Poem: "Oranges and Lemons" from The Oxford Nursery Rhyme Book (Oxford University Press).
Black Muslim leader Malcolm X was assassinated in Harlem on this date in 1965. He had just finished speaking to a rally at the Audubon Ballroom when three gunmen stood up from the crowd and fired.
It's the birthday of columnist Erma Bombeck, born in Dayton, Ohio, 1927. In 1964 the last of her three children started school, and she said she was, "too old for a paper route, too young for Social Security, and too tired for an affair." So she began to write columns for three dollars a week for her local suburban paper in Dayton. By the early 90s, her column was carried in over 600 papers, three times a week. She died from kidney disease in the spring of 1996.
It's the birthday, in Yorkshire, England, of poet W.H. Auden, in 1907. He went to college at Oxford University where a group of fellow students were so impressed by his poems that they hand-printed 30 copies of his first collection. In the 1930s he became involved with political causes and drove an ambulance for the Loyalists in the Spanish civil War. He moved to New York just before WWII and became an American citizen.
The Washington Monument was dedicated on this date in 1885a memorial to our first president. It took 36 years to buildmade of granite and marble and standing 555 feet high on the Mall in our nation's capital. It opened to the public in October, 1888.
Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®