Category Archives: Kansas

Silence

“Some people without brains do an awful lot of talking, don’t you think?
The Scarecrow from Oz”

In the Land of Oz, silence is the most misunderstood art of conversation, and loneliness the most steadfast companion.

Silence c’est le mot le plus mal compris, et la solitude le compagnon le plus ferme. Je trouve, Certaines personnes sans cerveaux parlent souvent beaucoup trop, tu ne penses pas ?

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Dans la terre d’Oz on cherche la sagesse.

Oz is a mythical place where one goes to seek wisdom. I say “goes”, but I do not reply that one “finds” the answer. For that one must be willing to listen. More than that, one must know to whom and where to listen.

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To an old red barn

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an old red barn

La grange une fois
peinte en rouge vif,

voici grise,
pas de place pour un roi ou une reine,
une maison humble pour une bœuf
qui parcourt la gamme libre
et buvez dans un bassin boueux

heureuse de trouver un abri
contre la tempête du monde.

 

To an old red barn

A barn is far too important a building to be left forlorn, once painted bright red, now a ghostly vision of the past, neglected, no place for the likes of kings and queens, lords and ladies, or even you and me; but like the poet, it serves and stands and waits for cows that roam the hills for grass, and for a treat get to lick a block of salt, or stand in bunches ‘neath a lonely tree for shade, flicking at those pesky flies with much too short a tail, waiting ‘til the close of day to come home, happy to find shelter from the storm, happy to munch a little hay, happy though they have not a lot, but an old forgotten barn.

There they rest the restless night, protected from the mighty storm, waiting, waiting, though thank God, they know not, to be served between a bun.

By the side of the road

Une ferme reste debout la route.
Qui ont vécu ici
disparu depuis et laissé derrière,
Rien mais moi

November 2016, driving along the Smoky Valley road, K-4, west of Marquette, Kansas. The farmhouse rests on a limestone foundation. It is not much bigger than a one-car garage, and not a big car at that. It has a cellar. The house is two story, two rooms on each floor, sleeping rooms upstairs. The wallpaper is faded. The stairs are a wreck. Much of the second floor has fallen in. Otherwise, one is impressed by the fact that the house stands tall and erect.

Those who lived here
Are long gone
They left not a thing behind
But a couple of words on a tire
To inquiring people,
An unfriendly thought,
That says no hunting
You ought to keep moving along

Still the door flaps in the wind
It speaks and says, come in
And there is no one about
To say keep out, so
Let me ask,
‘Tis no difficult task to walk in

And, if the house is open
To the wind and the rain,
Why not me?

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