Sep. 24, 1996

Moonlight in Vermont

by William Matthews


Today's Reading:"Moonlight in Vermont" by William Matthews from SELECTED POEMS AND TRANSLATIONS, published by Houghton Mifflin Co. (1992).

The city of Saint Paul begins its week-long festivities celebrating F. Scott Fitzgerald's 100th birthday. There'll be readings, tours of Fitzgerald's neighborhood, films, the unveiling of a statue, and a Great Gatsby dance.

It was on this day in 1957 that President Eisenhower sent federal troops to Little Rock, Arkansas, to protect African-American students who began classes at Central High School the previous day.

It's the birthday of puppeteer Jim Henson who was born in Greenville, Mississippi, in 1936. His muppets, including Kermit the Frog, Ernie, Bert, Oscar the Grouch, and the Cookie Monster first appeared on a five-minute TV program in the mid-1950s.

Babe Ruth played his final game with the New York Yankees on this day in 1934 in Yankee Stadium.

Today is the 100th birthday of novelist and short story writer F(rancis) Scott (Key) Fitzgerald (THIS SIDE OF PARADISE; THE GREAT GATSBY; TENDER IS THE NIGHT), born in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1896. At the end of Gatsby he wrote: "Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter---tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther. So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past."

It's the birthday of the man who invented the neon light, Georges Claude, born in Paris on this day in 1870.

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
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