In a Thoughtful mood…

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‘Indian Breakfast with Mt Hood in the Distance’ by Charles Lanman

Third Parties — 53 years ago written on this day, October 8, in 1963:

A “Freedom Now” party is being formed for positive political action by Negroes and it will undoubtedly become a force, and quickly so. May even seriously affect the 1964 presidential election. But in view of the non-entity and fatuousness of the existing two parties, there is no other way. This should have been done long ago.

Thomas Merton (1915-1968), Journals, Oct 8 1963

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_Now_Party

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_election,_1964

 

October wasn’t always October….

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‘Que pondere major’ (‘And greater weight’) illustration in Henry Peacham’s  Minerva Britanna: A Garden of Heroical Devises, 1612. Divine justice weighs on its scale an artillery cannon, against a poet’s laurel wreath and quill pen – ie ‘the pen is mightier than the sword.’

 

This moneth was called Domitianus in the time of [Roman Emperor] Domitian by his edict and commandment; but after his death, by the decree of the Senate, it took the name of October, every one hating the name and memory of so detestable a tyrant.

Henry Peacham (1576–1644), Gentleman’s Exercise

 

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Day after day bright and dry, hot afternoons over the bronze hills, We need rain to cut down the danger of fires.

Thomas Merton, journal Oct 8 1963

 

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‘In Requie, Labor’ (in rest, labor), illustration in Henry Peacham’s  Minerva Britanna: A Garden of Heroical Devises, 1612

 

In a garment of yellow and carnation, …a garland of oake leaves, with the acornes; …a basket of servises [sorb apples], medlers [medlar fruits], and chestnuts, and other fruits, that ripen at the later time of the year; …robe the colour of the leaves and flowers decaying.

Henry Peacham (1576–1644), Gentleman’s Exercise

 

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‘The Angler (Portrait of Charles Lanman)’ by William James Hubard. (Editorial disclaimer: this site does not approve of the murdering of fish or other animals for sport.)

 

It was one of the loveliest days in early autumn, and the general atmosphere had a tendency to subdue every feeling of the heart, and threw me in a thoughtful mood.

Charles Lanman (1819-1895), “Musings,” 1840

Lanman is an interesting figure. He was an artist, explorer, travel writer, science writer, biographer, librarian, and government official.

His public career included service as librarian for the US War Department, for the US House of Representatives, and for the city library of Washington, DC. He was also head of an accounting office with the US Interior Department, private secretary to Senator Daniel Webster, secretary to the Japanese legation to the US, and assistant assessor for the District of Columbia.

He also studied painting for ten years with Asher Durand (painter of “Kindred Spirits”) and was elected a member of the academy associated with the Hudson River School of painting.

 

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The end of the summer is not the end of the world. Here’s to October…

A.A. Milne (1882–1956), “A Word for Autumn”

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