Poem of the day

“I hear it was charged against me”
by Walt Whitman (1819-1892)

I hear it was charged against me that I sought to destroy institutions;
But really I am neither for nor against institutions;
(What indeed have I in common with them?—Or what with the destruction of them?)
Only I will establish in the Mannahatta, and in every city of These States, inland and seaboard,
And in the fields and woods, and above every keel, little or large, that dents the water,
Without edifices, or rules, or trustees, or any argument,
The institution of the dear love of comrades.

Views: 50

Game of the week

John Curdo many not have been a grandmaster, or even an international master but he dominated New England Chess for decades. During his prime, he almost never left New England. Had he played more widely, he almost certainly would have earned the international master title and possibly the grandmaster title. When he did play grandmasters, he had his share of wins. For example, he crushed Kudrin at the Pillsbury Open in 1998 at the age of fifty (1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 g6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Qxd4 Nf6 5. Bb5 a6 6. Ba4 b5 7. Bb3 Nc6 8. Qd3 Bg7 9. O-O O-O 10. Nc3 d6 11. Bg5 Bb7 12. Rfe1 Na5 13. Nd5 Nxd5 14. exd5 Re8 15. Re2 h6 16. Bh4 g5 17. Bg3 Bxb2 18. Rae1 Bf6 19. h4 Qd7 20. hxg5 hxg5 21. Re6 Nxb3 22. cxb3 Kg7 23. Nd4 fxe6 24. Nxe6+ Kh6 25. f4 g4 26. Kf2 1-0). Here he beats a future grandmaster who, at the time, was a regular invitee to the US Closed Championships.

Views: 35

Poem of the day

Love’s Wisdom
by Alfred Austin (1835-1913)

Now on the summit of Love’s topmost peak
Kiss we and part; no further can we go:
And better death than we from high to low
Should dwindle or decline from strong to weak.
We have found all, there is no more to seek;
All have we proved, no more is there to know;
And time could only tutor us to eke
Out rapture’s warmth with custom’s afterglow.
We cannot keep at such a height as this;
For even straining souls like ours inhale
But once in life so rarefied a bliss.
What if we lingered till love’s breath should fail!
Heaven of my Earth! one more celestial kiss,
Then down by separate pathways to the vale.

Views: 38

Virtual depositions??

As a occasional litigator who (very) occasionally handles depositions, I don’t think I’d be at all comfortable with virtual depositions. And since they’re generally only used in civil cases, I don’t see the need. Civil cases can simply be put on hold for the duration of the crisis (that’s what Massachusetts is doing with a few exceptions).

Squire Patton Boggs partner Steven M. Auvil in March asked an Ohio federal judge to take a rather unusual step in a case he was working on, compel a remote deposition.

Views: 41

Poem of the day

The Rolling English Road
by Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1872-1936)

Before the Roman came to Rye or out to Severn strode,
The rolling English drunkard made the rolling English road,
A reeling road, a rolling road, that rambles round the shire,
And after him the parson ran, the sexton and the squire,
A merry road, a mazy road, and such as we did tread,
The night we went to Birmingham by way of Beachy Head.

I knew no harm of Bonaparte and plenty of the Squire,
And for to fight the Frenchman I did not much desire;
But I did bash their baggonets because they came arrayed
To straighten out the crooked road an English drunkard made,
Where you and I went down the lane with ale-mugs in our hands,
The night we went to Glastonbury by way of Goodwin Sands.

His sins they were forgiven him; or why do flowers run
Behind him; and the hedges all strengthening in the sun?
The wild thing went from left to right and knew not which was which,
But the wild rose was above him when they found him in the ditch.
God pardon us, nor harden us; we did not see so clear
The night we went to Bannockburn by way of Brighton Pier.

My friends, we will not go again or ape an ancient rage,
Or stretch the folly of our youth to be the shame of age,
But walk with clearer eyes and ears this path that wandereth,
And see undrugged in evening light the decent inn of death;
For there is good news yet to hear and fine things to be seen,
Before we go to Paradise by way of Kensal Green.

Views: 37

Poem of the day

The Minstrel Boy
by Thomas Moore (1779-1852)
This poem was set to music and often recorded. Here is John McCormack’s version; here is Liam Clancy’s; and here is Paul Robeson’s

The Minstrel Boy to the war is gone,
⁠      In the ranks of death you’ll find him
His father’s sword he has girded on,
⁠      And his wild harp slung behind him.
“Land of song!” said the warrior bard,
      “Tho’ all the world betrays thee,
One sword, at least, thy rights shall guard,
⁠      One faithful harp shall praise thee.”

The Minstrel fell!—but the foeman’s chain
      Could not bring his proud soul under;
The harp he loved ne’er spoke again,
      For he tore its cords asunder;
And said, “No chains shall gully thee,
      Thou soul of love and bravery!
Thy songs were made for the brave and free,
      They shall never sound in slavery!”

Views: 37

Poem of the day

by T.S. Eliot (1888-1965)

               Thou hast nor youth nor age
         But as it were an after dinner sleep
         Dreaming of both.

Here I am, an old man in a dry month,
Being read to by a boy, waiting for rain.
I was neither at the hot gates
Nor fought in the warm rain
Nor knee deep in the salt marsh, heaving a cutlass,
Bitten by flies, fought.
My house is a decayed house,
And the jew squats on the window sill, the owner,
Spawned in some estaminet of Antwerp,
Blistered in Brussels, patched and peeled in London.
The goat coughs at night in the field overhead;
Rocks, moss, stonecrop, iron, merds.
The woman keeps the kitchen, makes tea,
Sneezes at evening, poking the peevish gutter.

                  I an old man,
A dull head among windy spaces.

Signs are taken for wonders. “We would see a sign!”
The word within a word, unable to speak a word,
Swaddled with darkness. In the juvescence of the year
Came Christ the tiger

In depraved May, dogwood and chestnut, flowering Judas,
To be eaten, to be divided, to be drunk
Among whispers; by Mr. Silvero
With caressing hands, at Limoges
Who walked all night in the next room;
By Hakagawa, bowing among the Titians;
By Madame de Tornquist, in the dark room
Shifting the candles; Fraulein von Kulp
Who turned in the hall, one hand on the door. Vacant shuttles
Weave the wind. I have no ghosts,
An old man in a draughty house
Under a windy knob.

After such knowledge, what forgiveness? Think now
History has many cunning passages, contrived corridors
And issues, deceives with whispering ambitions,
Guides us by vanities. Think now
She gives when our attention is distracted
And what she gives, gives with such supple confusions
That the giving famishes the craving. Gives too late
What’s not believed in, or if still believed,
In memory only, reconsidered passion. Gives too soon
Into weak hands, what’s thought can be dispensed with
Till the refusal propagates a fear. Think
Neither fear nor courage saves us. Unnatural vices
Are fathered by our heroism. Virtues
Are forced upon us by our impudent crimes.
These tears are shaken from the wrath-bearing tree.

The tiger springs in the new year. Us he devours. Think at last
We have not reached conclusion, when I
Stiffen in a rented house. Think at last
I have not made this show purposelessly
And it is not by any concitation
Of the backward devils.
I would meet you upon this honestly.
I that was near your heart was removed therefrom
To lose beauty in terror, terror in inquisition.
I have lost my passion: why should I need to keep it
Since what is kept must be adulterated?
I have lost my sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch:
How should I use it for your closer contact?

These with a thousand small deliberations
Protract the profit of their chilled delirium,
Excite the membrane, when the sense has cooled,
With pungent sauces, multiply variety
In a wilderness of mirrors. What will the spider do,
Suspend its operations, will the weevil
Delay? De Bailhache, Fresca, Mrs. Cammel, whirled
Beyond the circuit of the shuddering Bear
In fractured atoms. Gull against the wind, in the windy straits
Of Belle Isle, or running on the Horn,
White feathers in the snow, the Gulf claims,
And an old man driven by the Trades
To a sleepy corner.

                  Tenants of the house,
Thoughts of a dry brain in a dry season.

Views: 30

Poem of the day

Der Nöck
by August Kopisch (1799-1853)

Es tönt des Nöcken Harfenschall:
Da steht der wilde Wasserfall,
      Umschwebt mit Schaum und Wogen
      Den Nöck im Regenbogen.
            Die Bäume neigen
            Sich tief und schweigen,
Und atmend horcht die Nachtigall.—

“O Nöck, was hilft das Singen dein?
Du kannst ja doch nicht selig sein!
      Wie kann dein Singen taugen?”—
      Der Nöck erhebt die Augen,
            Sieht an die Kleinen,
            Beginnt zu weinen…
Und senkt sich in die Flut hinein.

Da rauscht und braust der Wasserfall,
Hoch fliegt hinweg die Nachtigall,
      Die Bäume heben mächtig
      Die Häupter grün und prächtig.
            O weh, es haben
            Die wilden Knaben
Der Nöck betrübt im Wasserfall.

“Komm wieder, Nöck, du singst so schön!
Wer singt, kann in den Himmel gehn!
      Du wirst mit deinem Klingen
      Zum Paradiese dringen!
            O komm, es haben
            Gescherzt die Knaben:
Komm wieder, Nöck, und singe schön!”

Da tönt des Nöcken Harfenschall,
Und wieder steht der Wasserfall,
      Umschwebt mit Schaum und Wogen
      Den Nöck im Regenbogen.
            Die Bäume neigen
            Sich tief und schweigen,
Und atmend horcht die Nachtigall.

Da tönt des Nöcken Harfenschall:
Da steht der wilde Wasserfall,
      Umschwebt mit Schaum und Wogen
      Den Nöck im Regenbogen.
            Die Bäume neigen
            Sich tief und schweigen,
Und atmend horcht die Nachtigall.

Es spielt der Nöck und singt mit Macht
Von Meer und Erd und Himmelspracht.
      Mit Singen kann er lachen
      Und selig weinen machen,—
            Der Wald erbebet,
            Die Sonn’ entschwebet …
Er singt bis in die Sternennacht!

Views: 47