Fiction Editor Charles Wm. Logsdon
Non-Fiction Editor Gary Kaufman
Poetry Editor Tina Inge
Art Editor Randy Phillips
Photography Editor Don Dudenbostel
Editorial Assistants Sandra Woods, Ryque Tate Dave Lauver, Suzl Nelson
Harlan Hambright, Christine GIftner Mike Gilligan, Ann Scandlyn Advisory Committee Dr. Richard Kelly, Mr. Richard LeFevre Editor - Bob Migliara
Layout and Production Jim Shaver
Managing Editor • Bruce Colbert General Editor - Mary Kelly
Proofreader - Staff
In This Issue Volume 11 WINTER
No. 2 1970
Non-Fiction Revolution—Evolution: The Arts, by Jim Shaver .................. page 3 The Rootedness of Tradition, by Charles Wm. Logsdon . . . Page 10 Country Music: The Native American Art, by Bruce Colbert page 20 Fiction The Hairy Crown, by Richard Robyn....................................... page 6 Budongo, by Gerald K. Eddleman......................................... page 13 The Other Side of the Coin, by John Sheddan.....................page 22 Reviews On the Threshold of a Dream, by Paul Haley....................... page 24 Genesis 1, by Gayle McLain....................................................page 24 Santana, by Sally Blanchard....................................................page 25 Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice, by Gary Kaufman...........page 25 Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, by Otto Belch . . . page 26 Poems Pages......................................... 9, 12, 15, 18, 19, 26 and 30. Contributors—Cooper Miller, Michael Galligan, K. C. Spengeman, Patricia Ellis, Tina Inge, Mickey McCormack, Berot, Christine Giftner, Charles W. Logsdon, Rich Ward, and Tom King. Centerfold: Suzi Nelson Cover: Randy Phillips, Harlan Hambright, Richard Lockwood
EDITORIAL COMMENT During this past quarter most of you have seen ads of posters around campus which have identified the theme of this quarter’s Phoenix as “Revolution—Evolution.” There are many reasons why we chose this as our theme. The new trends, some of which are offensive to certain individuals or groups, have mainly developed since the end of World War II. In the arts freedom of thought and freedom of experience are today rights which most artists demand. Freedom of expression, of course, is a must. The most profound influence exerted in the UT area has been from the “Fugitive Poets” and their school which developed at Vander bilt during the 1930’s. This school claims that for a creative person to write the truth, he must write about (1) rural America, (2) old-age and death, and (3) not venture out of his initial environment. Evid ently, there appears to be a heavy line drawn for the creative person. The “freedoms” are actually dis carded. The creative person should not be discouraged because he does not conform to a certain philosophy. The “traditionahsts” have done more harm to the cause of truth and creativity than help. Their school is not wrong, but it is not the only school. The Phoenix encourages all arts and all schools and plulosphies of ail. We beheve that no person should be restricted from his creative expression in any manner. If a person does restrict the creative person in his endevours, the school and person are guilty of committing a vicious sin against the arts as a whole. " "Copyright 1970. all rights reserved. The: PHOENIX is published three times a ::: :year during the Fall, Winter, and Spring a •:::quarters by The University of Tennes-:;: :::: see Publishing Association. Inc. Submitx ::: editorial contributions to PHOENIX.>: x::The University of Tennessee, Knox;:i:i:vllle, Tenn., 37916.
by Jim Shaver
Editorâ€™s Note: The Phoenix would like to thank Dr. Young, Dr. Penderson, Dr. Ewing, Dr. Hodges, Prof. Gravander, Dr. McMillan, Dr. Soper, Prof. Fields, Dr. Lacy, and Don Dudenbostel for their help in the preparation of this article.
TThe age of transition. The changing times. The mortal being has stepped from the sidelines, no longer content to watch and learn through interpretation. This is the age of involvement. The time when man comes to center stage and lets the world know he is here and he is doing his own thing. The trends in the fine and practical arts can be viewed in a somewhat different light. It is the intent of this article to present these new or revived trends in the perspective of the twentieth century and more specifically the now deceased sixties. Music has probably undergone one of the greatest changes in the field of fine arts in the last decade or so. Imagine a pianist in concert. His audience waits in profound interest as he marches on stage, hfts the Ud of his piano, sits before the keyboard and does absolutely nothing for nearly two minutes. This is the first movement of his piece. This is an example of the innovations brought about by men like John Cage. Another example would be the topless celloist who received a great deal of pubhcity in the sixties. But serious music has been under the influence, to some degree, of the rock music of the sixties. When the Beatles met America via Ed SuUivan in the early sixties, audiences were faced with an entirely new view on popular music. Music became more than entertaimnent, more than fine art, more than a commerical enterpriseâ€”music became an emotional experience. The lights, the loud sounds, and audiences on the
verge of mania focused popular music into new perspectives. People were being turned on by it. UT music instructor, Dr. Donald Pederson, feels there are two camps in the popular music of today. On the one end is the group that has rigid control over written material. It is important to this group make a clear defination of sounds. On the other end is the free moving, hard rock type compostion. More sounds that are imfamilar to the ear are produced now. The opportunity for chance is stronger. Composition is done in groups today. It is unimportant as to who writes the piece, the emphasis is on communication. This movement of freedom has proven itself more than a passing fancy by the duration of popularity many of the rock groups are maintaining. But it is impossible to judge fairly the music of the twentieth century at this time. This is for two reasons: (1) there are 30 constantly changing years left in the century and (2) a great deal of time must elapse before a certain style of music can be put into perspective with the music of the preceding centuries. The area of art also centered around two movements in the sixties. Recognizable imagery came to the fore with Pop Art and its expression of the ordinary. Soup cans and Marilyn Monroe, as presented by Andy Warhol, established this new style. Other artists also grasped Madison Avenue concepts, the result of which was fragmented billboards of Coca-Cola,
Phoenix: Winter 1970
hamburgers Mickey Mouse, and many others. Duration of the movement was short but provided a stimulus for new directions in art. The second movement was created by Allen Kaprow who created “happenings.” It stems from the visual arts such as theater, movies, and the dance. Hays are centered upon the emphasis of audience participation. The focal point of modern art and contemporary arts and crafts currently centers in New York City with environmental rooms. Painting and sculpture can no longer be singularly categorized because they are composites which demand the full sense and intellectual response of the spectator. Dr. Ewing feels that these two new concepts are changing the direction of art and “may lead us through the element of involvement to the essential level of relevancy.” Contemporary drama is undergoing a change from the reahstic and naturahztic to expressionism. This movement springs to some degree, from the “Drama of the Absurd.” The trend is moving away from the attraction of one star to the importance of all roles in production. Theatre production today not only offers something for the public to see but also selects plays that have a great amount of signifiance. Truman Capote’s “Grass Harp,” presented at the Carousel Theatre in February, is an example of the movement toward expressionism and significance. Dr. James Fields, director of the production, says the play couldn’t make it in the 50s, but today as an escape from reahty with a great deal of class. Fields cited another example in Tennessee Wilham’s “Camino Real.” Williams was writing ahead of himself. The play received terrible reviews in the early 50s but critics today say this may be his most significant work. Nudity on stage became much more prominent in the sixties. “Oh Calcutta,” a production with nudity bordering on the pornographic was at one end of the spectrum while “Hair,” with nudity being an expressive and artful element of total honesty, at the other end. Fields says the contemporary period is a product of its time. It comes from life.
Phoenix: Winter 1 970
This concept of realism is also carried over into poerty. Linda Montgromery, speaking in Dr. Samuel H. McMilUan’s book. The Poet In His World: Twelve In Tennessee, says “Poets are becoming more concerned with the realistic modes of life rather than the ideahstic. I try to make each poem identify with life, as it is today.” In the same pubhcation Andy Whitwell expresses himself as a poet who breaks down the barriers of rhymmed verse and symbolistic word choices. “............. I try to let my poems flow free at their own speed and be a part of something not distorted by metrical gaudiness and word choices that sound pretty but have no concrete value.” Other poets interviewed in the book cite several important points about today’s poetry. Songmakers like Dylan, Donovan, Lennon, and Hartford are hsted as important in today’s poetical movement. Another of the poets in McMiUian’s book, Clyde Watkins, emphasizes poetry as being a vocal, “out loud” art. In closing his book, McMillian says the poets cited in the book “see poetry as expansive and do not want to be limited by anything that restricts the hfe of a poem.” McMillian says poetry is going from the realistic to the surreahstic. Poetry has more freedom through non-rhyme but a note must be made that non-rhyme is not a new innovation. Its roots are more than a century old. Another area that is involved in this changing trend is philosophy. One cannot completely cover this very broad spectrum that philosophy entails in one brief article. This article will attempt to break the spectrum down somewhat. Philosophy instructor Jerry.Gravander is a student in the philosophy of science. He cites many changes in this fascinating and important area. People used to think science eternally progressed, and someday everybody whould know all there is to know about the world. But scientists carmot and do not feel this way today. Minds are changed and the scientist can come up with a different world. Gravander labeled this the scientific revolution. He said that first there was a medieval
theory for science to base beliefs upon. Then came a change to the Newtonian theory and in the twentieth century the change has been to the Einstein theory. He says we can anticipate another change in future years. Gravander also said that changes in science weren’t gradual but abrupt. He cited the differences between Newtonian physics and Einsteinian physics as an example. Newtonian physics taught that action carmot happen at a distance. Einstein taught that action can happen from any distance. Gravander also noted that philosophy is becoming more and more involved in what scientists are doing. Dr. Michael P. Hodges, an assistant professor of philosophy draws conclusions on two areas of thought in the field of philosophy. The first is the Existentialist school of thought. The second is the analytical school Hodges noted that both these areas are radical breaks with the past. Explaining the thoughts in the analytical trend Hodges used Plato’s ideas as an example. Plato would ask What is Knowledge? What is Beauty? What is Truth? The early Greek philosophy would find the answers in the essence of the human being. The essence and features of the common class. The student of analytical philosopy would reject this line of thought He would reject looking for essences and features of a common class. The analytical thought centers around the rejection of essences. Again using Plato as an example Hodges explained the extensionaUst theory of thought. Plato said that man is a being of essence. This is something he is bom with and it unfolds during his life. Each new event in life causes the being to unfold more. The Existentialists say man has no essence to speak of. Each new situation calls for a new decision. The new decision in turn makes the being a different person. New events do not cause a constant unfolding in the being. Instead they cause a
creation of something different in the being. Hodges said both these theories are dying out, that philosophy is in a period of transition. In the Learning-Research Institute’s winter volume of Teaching-Learning Issues, No. 12, Bill Lacy, Dean of UT’s New School of Architecture was interviewed in an article entitled “17 Questions.” The article deals with the UT New School of Architecture and in it Dean Lacy makes several statements dealing with the importance of the practical art of architecture in today’s society. Lacy called architecture” an expression of a culture’s level of taste, a culture’s scale of values, the materials available for building, and the level of existing technology design abiUty.” In other words architecture can aptly be labeled a society or culture’s personahty. Also in the interview Lacy said that architecture needed a little something extra. An extra quality which Vetruvius, a Roman architect of 100 A.D. labeled “Delight”. This Delight deals mainly with architecture’s aesthetic value. Lacy said today’s urban society needs a new architect, one who is really many a architects. Architecture should have connections with sociology, phychology, business, and engineering. Advance and rapid technology has been the keyfactor in the field of photography. Don Dudenbostel, chief photographer for the UT Daily Beacon says that photography has evolved from the studio photography-where the finished product is touched up-to the open, natural photography of today. He attributes this to the development of 35 mm cameras and film. The electronic age has also introduced countless numbers of shutters, lens, and meters that aid in giving the photographer a more natural, candid touch. Like music, art, and the theatre, photography is moving into a period of expressionism. A period where the photographer is in a position to express more naturalness and freedom in his finished product.
Phoenix: Wintar 1970
The Hairy Crown A two-sided ignorance that leads to death and disorder on an American campus.
X wrote the first short story of my hfe just after the student disorders at Massington College. It was a good story, a story that involved a young man and his girl friend, and their reactions to the upheavals around them. It was, of course, a turning point in my life, and marked the first time I had used talents which I had only guessed that I had. Perhaps you haven’t heard of the disorders at Massington; perhaps you haven’t even heard of Massington itself? It is a small college in Connecticut with an enrollment of less than 5,000; a beautiful campus located below a rise of mountains overlooking the Houcutec River, not far from the New York state line. In the fall, when I wrote the story, leaves from the trees of Massington were scattered about the campus. Some fell into the river behind the Administration Building to be carried away around the far bend to Ney York. In the fall of the year, when students returned to Massington, it had been six months since the bloody confrontation at Harvard University. Phoenix: Winter 1970
by Richard Robyn
On Tuesday, November 17, a small group of students walked through the doors of the Administration Building with a list of demands; “nonnegotiable,” as the well-used phrase goes. I was working for the Procurer at the time, a kind of half-hearted underground magazine enjoying some success on campus, and was sent to cover the event. When I arrived at the Administra tion Building there were perhaps a hundred students gathered in the halls waiting for news from the consultation between the leaders of the confronta tion and Dr. James Franklin, President of Massington. I circulated in the crowd asking questions, and rapping with a few people that I knew. The demands, those “non-negotialbe” items which were being discussed by the student leaders and President Franklin, had been drawn up a few nights before by some campus leaders at the apartment of James Hesslen. Hesslen, narrowly defeated for student body president the year before, was head of one of the largest organized student factions on campus—the Council for Democratic Action.
By the time Hesslen emerged from the President’s office I had gotten the feel of the crowd. It was friendly, but not conciliatory; somewhat proud of its action, but a bit anxious about the outcome. Most of the students there firmly believed that each demand should be met, but few of them knew what to do if they were refused. When I pressed them for an answer, they were evasive, unsure, but they all agreed, no violence, no Harvard! “Man, I was there, at Harvard,” said one student. “Forget it. Busted heads, that was all. Let’s cool it for awhile. Maybe Franklin’ll come through.” James Hesslen, hands in his jeans pockets and shoulders slumped under a faded Army coat, brown hair long and unkept, walked down the hall from the conference and stood on a chair in front of the group inside the building. “Franklin turned us down,” he raised his hands for silence. “He refused to talk with me or with anyone else here. It seems he’s uptight about a bunch of so-called “crazies.,” and Hesslen’s voice got heavy and sarcastic, “invading has sanctified home.
So, ‘crazies,’ let’s gather ourselves and go peacefully back to our cages.” He started to step down from the chair, but someone called out, “Jim, what the hell happened?” Hesslen turned back to face the crowd and replied “I’ll tell ya what the hell happened. The old man’s afraid to ‘give in’ as he says. He looked over the demands, passed them to his secretary, and said that he and the bright, young, forward-looking trustees will look them over. That’s what the hell happened!” He looked down at us in silence. Suddenly he spread his hands, palms outward, and said, “All right, look, this isn’t the end of it all, is it? You know as well as I do what’s gonna happen. Nothing! Right?” He raised his eyebrows and waited. No one answered. “All right then, let’s get started. Dave and I,” he referred to David Ford, the vice president of the student body, “have drawn up a petition endorsing the demands that I just gave to Frankhn. We’re gonna circulate it among everyone on campus; faculty, students, administrators, everyone! You guys go home and talk it up with your friends. Get them to sign it. We also need some volunteers to pass out pamphlets. Talk to Dave here if you’re interested.” Hesslen glanced down at Dave Ford. Ford nodded his head and Hesslen said, “Okay, there’s probably gonna be a rally at Henson Park Firday night around ten or eleven o’clock. We’re not sure yet, but there’ll be an announcement in the Statement. So, you guys come,” and he added with a laugh, “stoned or not stoned.” Hesslen called the meeting to an end and stepped down from the chair. A crowd formed around he and Ford clammering to volunteer their services, or shouting to indicate their support. I left the building. “So, confrontation at Massington,” I began jokingly. “Shuh,” replied Hany O’Donnel, a reporter for the Massington Statement, the campus daily newspaper, “Big Jim Hesslen, number one bullshitter.”
“Yeah, what’s got into him since last year?” “Oh, hell, he went to Harvard and got radicaUzed. He’s a friend of Tom Hayden’s now, you know.” “That right? You think anything will come of this?” “Come on. Jack. A lot of hot air. A rally where everyone’ll blow off steam. Franklin will concede a few points. Then back to Massington-normal.” “That rally may be something,” I said. “Yeah, do you think Hesslen can get something started with a couple of hundred people rooted in the time honored Massington tradition of non violent apathy? I’d hke to see him try.” “You may get to.” “Yeah?” I parted company with Harry at the door to the mian office of the Statement, and since I had no classes in the afternoon, I went home. My apartment, a mock brownstone buil ding designed for students with less money than taste, was located two blocks from the campus. On the way I picked up the morning copy of the Statement. 1 opened a can of beer and sat with my feet propped up on the desk in my living room, and 1 read the Statement. There was nothing in the paper about the day’s presentation of the demands; apparently it was as much of a surprise to them as it was to me. The phone rang jangingly and I picked up the receiver. “Yeah?” “Jack?” It was Richard Collins, editor of the Procurer. “Yeah, Col?” “Jack, I just wanted to know how the meeting went. There any copy in it?” I leaned back in my chair. “Yeah, I think so. Hesslen is involved and seems to be the leader of the whole movement. He gave the demands directly to Franklin.” “Right to the top, huh?” “Sure, nothing but the best for Hess, right? Anyway, Frankhn seemed to give him something of a cold shoulder; told Hesslen that the board of trustees will consider the demands.”
“I guess we know what that means. Anything to the demands them selves?” “I got a copy but haven’t had the time to look them over completely. A few seem pretty sound.” “Yeah? Like what?” My door slammed and Paula Wray peeked around the corner of the kitchen door. I motioned for her to sit down but she ignored me, and instead went to the refrigerator and got a Coke. I gave her an exasperated look and answered. “Well, like initia ting some new courses at the lower levels; black history and so forth. Also, some upper division American history courses which would include what’s going on in the new research; you know, that stuff by Schlesinger and others. Studies of violence. A more realistic look at our past, like that.” “Interesting. Anything else?” “They give some figures on govern ment subsidies granted to Massington for theoretical research into chemical and germ warfare—been going on for years. Pretty interesting, if true. They also say something about establishing a student-faculty-administration board for ‘more significant dialogue’—1 think that’s the way they put it. Those are the most important. Sounds a lot like Harvard and Cornell, huh? I think they may just possibly have something.” “Probably so. Do you think they have any support on campus?” “Of course that’s hard to say now. Hesslen said something about a rally Friday night. I guess that will tell.” “Good, Jack. Look, I want you to follow this thing. I want you to get in touch with Hesslen and set up an interview. Sometime before the rally. Can do?” “Sure.” “And keep your eyes open.” “Yeah.” “Okay, Jack. If anything comes up be sure and call me.” “Right. I’ll see ya later. Col.” I hung the phone up and started to make some notes on the questions I wanted to ask Hesslen. A coke bottle thumped hard onto the table. “Well, have you forgotten me?” 1 laid the pencil aside and looked
Phoenix: Winter 1970
across the table at her. Pretty, dark-haired, Paula. “Now what’s got into you? Do you think you’re ever off my mind?” She smiled a bit uncertainly. I picked my pencil up and continued where I left off. “Why don’t you fix something to eat?” I asked. “Well, I’m damned! ” I looked up and smiled. “Just kidding. Okay, I’m sorry, but you can
“What?” “That you’ve got to kiss me whenever I look at you the way I am now.” “Umm ...,” she sighed. She pushed her hair back from her face and leaned down to me .... The two days before the rally were quiet, but wery not without activity. The Statement came out with a strong editorial endorsing the Tuesday de mands and chastising Franklin for his refusal to negotiate directly with the students. “Violence is an expression that counters reason, hinders effective discussion,” the editorial said, and it added, “we don’t want confrontation, but we definitely do want action.” Jack Perkins was a member of the Council for Democratic Action and a good friend of Jim Hesslen. We had met the year before when we both had worked on the staff of the Procurer. It was through Perkins that I decided to get the interview with Hesslen. I saw Perkins the next morning while on the way to a class. “Sure, Jack, I’ll talk with Hess and try to give ya a break. But I can’t promise anything—he’s goddamned busy tryin’ to get things together.” “Too busy for the Procurer?"
see I’m a little busy right now. What would you like to do tonight?” “Well, if you’re not loaded down with this important work, I thought I might stick around here.” “Never too busy.” “Huh.” She didn’t seem convinced. She walked to the sink and put her empty bottle on the counter. Pretty Paula. Long dark mass of hair curling down onto her shoulders, sharp blue eyes, her body supple beneath the old clothes she was so fond of wearing. She turned and caught me staring at her. She walked across the room and stood over me. I looked up at her. “You remember what I told you once, don’t you?” Phoenix: Winter 1970
He laughed. “Everybo'dy’s too busy for the Procurer. No, really. I’ll tell him about it and give you a call.” “Uh, Perk. Could you before the Friday rally?”
set it up
Perkins paused for a moment. “No, I’m afraid not. Jack. I was thinking of sometime early next week. We’ll just be too busy between now and Friday. Ya know what I mean? I wish I could help.” “That’s okay, I understand. How are things coming for the rally? Any news about support?” “Yeah. Things are picking up. Hess has talked with several groups around
campus, and we’re starting to get a lot of support.The petition that we’ve got going has over three thousand signa tures at the last count. It looks like we’ll have a good rally.” Thursday’s Statement used all of its second page and a column and a half of the third page for an interview by Jim Hesslen. In it, Hesslen reiterated his position, went into detail about the demands, and gave his opinion on where President FrankUn stood. The interview ended with his challenge to Franklin; “Oh, sure, Franklin has been a capable President. Capable in the area of getting funds for Massington. But when the students begin to feel left out of the academic process, begin to search for a meaning to the life outside of classrooms, begin to look for something deeper than a grade, begin to become inspired beyond material gain, when the students at Massington begin to demand answers to the true questions of life out there and not here in this shelter, then they begin to doubt the leadership of this admini stration. We have done all we could to talk with franklin, to reason with him, but he has refused to listen. ” “Franklin is an old fox, a tired old fox afraid of his shadow. He needs to be caught.” At my prompting, Paula read the article, although she had frequently indicated considerable indifference. While she read I went to the kitchen, opened two beers, and sat one by her side. I lit a cigarette and sat drinking and smoking quietly, and watched her. She yawned, sighed, blinked her eyes, and read through the body of the article. She finished and looked across at me. “Now what is that supposed to mean?” “What?” She read the last sentences out loud. “I don’t know. What do you think?” “I think this Hesslen guy is pretty creepy, that’s what I think.” She got up and came over to sit by me. “Do you think there’s gonna be any trouble?” I shrugged. “HeU if I know? Have you still got the third page? Read the Cont. on page 27
The Monk’s Song All night we felt the shutter of the sinking pick Flowing through our arms and down our buttocks. Heard the scraping, grating shovel push its way through graveled dirt. Smelled damp midnight in the brooken grasses. Block on concrete block we laid deep in the earth Our palms blessing their foundation roughness Blessing the church we raised up in the night Not our own but for beloved brothers. At dawn we stored our tools in waiting trucks As raging color spread the clouds before us Gritted our teeth against the bursting beauty Wrapped our grey wool silence tight about us. Scorning the distortion wrought by words We held our senses bare before the blow Our only prayer for the courage to perceive His infinity of beauty His eternity of pain. We hang our souls about our necks on strings So naked and so clear the birds pure morning note Falls deep into their center and transforms Until the song is soul and soul is song. Patricia Ellis
Is This Right Dream? .
I slumber: in avenues of sleep I see myself as dreams see me Thin, harshly alive beneath the krieglights of history a small but personally potent history; somehow my fumble-tongue finds words for great orations and cooly straddle-legged I survey my audience of dream spirits and roll purple prose from my nasal soul into the distant fringe of darkness and people clap loud slapping palms back in the shadows out there in my dream where I can’t see; wonder, is this me, is this marvelous image presence me do these words come out of me . is this the right dream? Charles Wm. Logsdon
Sybil Over the Catskills The Clouds were going west and she like a gargoyle old and wise propped on elbows stroking her lip with a little finger stared into the low sun sinking with lidded eyes The birds distributed across the sky the fumarole in the valley sending up its column of vapor the stutter of a typewriter from a room she felt them all as she felt the cold stone where she leaned staring west with what thoughts until the sun creamed itself in a throne of cloud and the light was snatched back from the meadows and the walls and she watched no longer for her thoughts had ended at the same time Tina Inge
Phoenix: Winter 1970
Of Tradition By Charles Wm. Logsdon
Quotes from The Poet In His World: Twelve Samuel H. McMillan with written permission.
During the 1969 Southern Literary Conference, held at the University of Tennessee in April, three weU-known Southern writers James Dickey, Reynolds Price, Cleanth Brooks, and UT’s own Robert Drake, detailed their fond conceptions of “The Writer And His Tradition” (the subsequent title of the Conference’s report).
The results of these conceptional premises leave a somewhat hollow pit in the stomach of the young writer. It would seem that “tradition” is the quality which the Conference guests deem of primary importance as the source for the writer’s creativity. Above all else, “tradition” would seem to be the least hkely quality which a writer should rely upon in today’s fast changing world. “Tradition,” in its literary sense, is defined as “the accumulated knowledge, taste, and experience handed down from one generation of writers, .toanotlier.” However, to quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay “Nature,” we find that ideal quality for which every writer ought to search. Emerson says, “Why should we not also enjoy an original relation to the universe? Why should we not have a poetry and philosophy of insight and not of tradition. . .?” This sublime state of creativity is unfortunately beyond the grasp of the majority of writers today. Therefore, it has become a common practice in Phoenix: Winter 1970
the hterary world to depend upon “tradition” for the prime factor of influence. The general trend is to elaborate upon that which has gone before. Drake, Price, Dickey, and Brooks have taken this understanding of literary “tradition” one step higher in their conce ved notions. “Tradition” now becomes the focal point on terra firma from which all literary ideas radiate. One must first be “traditionally” born in the world (preferably in the Southern United States), grow up in a specific area (preferably rural), and experience the “localisms” and “traditions” of that place. Now, the writer has a bed-rock of fact and fantasy upon which he can forever after build his houses of verbalization. James Dickey, in his eloquently lethal way, has given the “traditional” focal point another name. During the Conference he said, “.. .the interest that one takes in local and traditional things adds to the sense of being ROOTED (italics mine) there and is one of the most important things that a human being can participate in.” There are ennumerable things more important to a writer than being “rooted” in “tradition.” Dickey’s idea seems to portray a stagnation of originahty in source material. If an area has become “rooted” in its own “tradition,” it would seem then that nothing progressive could ever come out of it. Rote learning was never a satisfactory
answer to the problem of higher education. Think then of what rote writing would do to literature. We could be assured of reading the same thing generation after generation with never a change for fear of insulting “tradition.” Robert Drake, in a series of class lectures and discussions the past year, has constantly iterated the theory that each writer has only one story to tell; and although a writer may tell many stories, he can never escape from the main theme of his experience. The theme will be told in various ways, but it will always remain essentially the same. Drake’s theory has its own “rootedness” of fact. Of course a writer will write about that subject with which he is most familiar, but the famihar need not necessarily be a redundant theme told over and over again. If the contemporary world outpaces its authors with complex originality and inventiveness, what will be the ultimate end of literature? In the Conference report, Drake says that “.. .the Southern writer has always. . .known who he is and he has known where he is...” If this is true, then we can look forward to a rash of young Southerners writing about the hide-bound “traditions” that so influenced them during their Uves. It is not enough that we be “rooted” in “tradition,” we must also write and rewrite our themes without change. In The Poet In His World: Twelve In Tennessee, by Samuel H. McMillan (UT professor of English), we are told that the young poets of the book “.. .see poetry as expansive and do not want to be hmited by anything that restricts the hfe of a poem. While they may be influenced by the region where they hve and write, they must not be unduly limited by it.” * Literary progress and change are the watch-words here; and we can be thankful that some young Southern writers are not relaxing on the restricting quahties of a “tradition.” “If they (McMillan’s twelve poets) deal with a traditional topic, they demand the freedom to treat it in their own way.” The famihar and “traditional” have been recognized, but with the exuberance of youth and through the complexity of the contemporary world, new thoughts, new approaches have been tried. In comparison to these young writers (and their attempts at creating new styles of approach), the speakers of the Southern Literary Conference would suggest to the writer that he base his work upon the residue of his area’s “traditions.” This wUl not work. The limitations are too great. There is enough sameness in our lives as they are, and to add this one other similarity would certainly not produce a renassiance of Southern writing. Freedom is of primary concern in the modern world and would necessarily carry over into the field of literature. To maintain both his craft, and his place, the writer must use the “insight” that Emerson so heartily endorsed; and he must use the “freedom to treat” his material in his own way that McMillan brings to the fore. Above all, the writer must not rely entirely upon the “rootedness” of “tradition.”
Phoenix Bestsellers Fiction
1. Hesse: Steppenwolfe 2. Rimmer: Harrad Experiment 3. Roth: Fortney's Complaint 4. Hailey: Airport 5. Green: I Never Promised You a Rose Garden 6. Marshall: Christy 7. Susann: The Love Machine 8. Tolkien: The Tolkien Trilogy 9. Rohhins: The Inheritors 10. Kellogg: Tell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon
1. McKuen: (All Books) 2 Ehrlich: Population Bomb 3. Morris: Naked Ape 4. Cleaver: Soul on Ice 5. Schonfield: Possoyer Plot 6. Peter and Hull: The Peter Principle 7. Schultz: Joy 8. Gvaoii: Between Parent and Child 9. Berne: Games People Play 10. Wolfe: Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Stream Line Baby
This is the top-ten bestseller list in the Knoxville area for the month of January according to surveys taken at the Campus, Gateway, and University Bookstores.
Phoenix: Winter 1970
Oppressed The tall one stood and talked, And carried the table on his shoulders As he walked. The short one sat there, And buried his brain in a lonely lair Where he could not bring himself to bear Anything.. .but a probing stare. The short one trembled in his vacuum As the table moved by him. On the table sat an eye and ear. Suddenly, the short one reached out to see and hear... But he could not. He then slowly drifted into a quite madness That tore out his soul and gave him only meaninglessness. The table began to fade from the short one’s feel. And he stumbled away trying to make it unreal. But he’s made, he’s mad.. .it does exist. Alas, he knew it, he could not resist The gravity of its meaning on his dreams.
Kind Of: Part I With reefer in mouth and hair hanging down. She sits in the seashore and smiles unabridged. Smooth and without ability. Shaking the hair with motion. Feeling unquaint with uncertainty, with all kinds of,0!Really! Rick Ward
Phoenix: Winter 1970
by Gerald K. Eddlemon
“Perhaps one day a genius chimp will be found . . .. Desmond Morris in The Naked Ape.
do not believe Desmond Morris in his The Naked Ape made this as a tongue-in-cheek statement. I believe he was admitting to the remote possibiUty of there someday being found a genius chimpanzee (or perhaps a genius porpoise) just as human genius’ are occasionally found; the most important imphcation being that we as man will be able to communicate with the chimp, himself a thinking, rational being. If we accept the possibihty that the major differences between man’s inherent intelligence (his intelligence as modified by experience) and the intelligence of a chimpanzee are mainly quantitative and not quaUtative, then the future discovery of a genius chimp, though imporbable, should not be looked upon as impossible. Such a possibility raises some extremely fascinating philosophical questions; for example, what kind of rights should an intelligent, rational animal other than man enjoy? Should he be the subject of experiments against his will? For that matter, should “normal” chimpanzees whose intelligence rivals that of young children be subjected to tests and experiments and zoos to which a man-child would never be subjected? The whole idea of a genius chimp and such challenging questions as the above simply proved too much of a temptation for me to resist. I have chosen the short story as a medium through which to touch upon these possibilities while admitting that a full exploration and development would demand a book at the least. Not a soul would have ever guessed at the awesome affair to which the letter on the desk of Dr. Hans Affenackt of Delta Primate Research Center would one day lead. The cold, ineffectual sun of late November played lightly on Affenackt’s brass letter opener as it slipped swiftly through the envelope post-marked “Kampala, Uganda.”
Dr. Affenackt allowed himself the luxury of a faint smile as he read the letter from Paulson, head of his research crew in Uganda; Phoenix: Winter 1970
Dear Hans, I think we may finally have something of special interest to you. After months of chimpan zee behavioral studies here, a few of us decided to “take a break”, exploring a relatively unknown area in the southwest portion of the Budongo tropical forest. Few Chimpanzee sight ings have been reported from this area, but I was confident that was because the area was rarely visited. To make a long story short, we found ourselves to be objects of great curiosity to a very cautious group of chimpanzees who seemed to posses a quieter but more varied and “vocal” set of sound signals than is usual. Our limited experi ence with them leads us to believe they posses an inordi nately powerful exploratory drive when compared to other chimpanzees. These apparent be havioral modifications and the fact that cursory studies of a few specimens (captured with great effort on subsequent trips) re veal some anatomical differences from the Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii usually found in adjacent areas, may well be of great enough significance to warrant classification into a new subspecies. As an outstanding example, the average cranial capacity of the few individuals we have captured totals more than 6000 cc. i.e. 50% more than in t. schweinfurthii. I feel under these circumstances that these animals deserve much more careful study, so I have been so presumptuous as to risk sending two young males and a pregnant female by the fastest possible means—I hope they make it in good health. Sincerely yours, Donald Paulson Although the young, robust males arrived with no more problems than a slight case of nerves, the poor femlae Phoenix: Winter 1970
chimpanzee was severely weakened by the ordeals of capture, transportation, and the plunge into a totally new and bewildering world. Upon giving birth to a 2.4 kg. male (rather large for chimpanzees), the mother promptly died. As there were no lactating female chimpanzees available at the time, Affenackt decided the best course of action would be to raise the appealing httle fellow, named Budongo after the forest in which he was found, as one of his own children. The two older chimps were kept at the research center and demonstrated a consider ably greater capacity to learn than found in more typical chimpanzees. The intelligence and the behavioral and morphological variations from the better known chimpanzees were great enough to merit a fair amount of discussion among Dr. Affenackt’s colleagues, but, perhaps fortunately, not great enough to attract the attention of the sensationahstic pop ular press. Meanwhile, Budongo had made a soft, rather appealing yelp by the time he was eight weeks old and had begun walking on his own by his twentieth week, compared to the 25-29 weeks needed for most chimpanzees to begin to walk. Then, one year later on a cold January morning, Affenackt’s six-year old son, Mark, bounced into the breakfast room and asked “May 1 have a banana. Daddy?” “Why you’ve never asked for a banana early in the morning before, son. Why do you want one now?” “Cause Budo asked me for a banana. Daddy. Can I have one for Budo please Daddy?” Now Dr. Affenackt was well aware of the imaginative powers of a six-year-old boy, but he had never known his son to be so enslaved to it as to make such a statement in all seriousness to his father. Thereupon he proceeded to the playroom in which Budo was actively engaged in play with his toys. Affenackt took Budo in his arms. “Budo old boy, how’s the world treating you?”
And then it came—softly, slowly and unmistakably, “ba-na-na .. .banana.” Affenackt fairly trembled with excitement. Perhaps those “da-da’s” he imagnied he heard from the chimp only a very few weeks ago were not simply his imagination working over time afterall. Perhaps. . .but no! This is really quite impossible, he thought to himself. Mere coincidence that the httle ape’s mumblings so closely resembled the rudiments of real human speech. Affenackt left for his office, not a httle upset with his wishful thinking. Bundongo politely accepted the proffered banana from httle Mark with a grunt. As the months passed, Affenackt became more and more convinced that he was indeed a sane person, that there was indeed something more than wishful thinking in his interpretation of the soft vocahzings of Budo. With the great help of Mark’s incessant jabbering and the constant exposure to television (“Can I have a Schlitz, Daddy?”), Affenackt worked long hours at improving the vocabulary of Budo. He did not notify his coUeagues of this discovery; there was something slightly terrifying about the whole thing to a cautious man. There was no longer any question of mere parrot-like mimicry. Budo was speaking and hstening with under standing—and doing it remarkably well. Furthermore, at the age of three and a half, he ventured into another area where no animal other than man has been known to go before. Budo passed from the simple circle and dot faces, which is the highest known graphic expression in other chimps, to much more complex drawings: de tailed faces, houses, and boats. Of course there were enough fixed-action patterns peculiarly chimpanzee-like to mark him as a chimp even had he possessed a human body. This led to some grave problems as Budo matured. By the time Budongo was five years old, Affenackt knew he would need help. He must let a few of his most trusted colleagues have a hand in Budo’s development, or there was
little hope of providing Budo adequate education. With carefully maintained secrecy, Budo was taught most every thing a human child was taught as far as the necessary secrecy precautions would allow. Special emphasis was placed on the Judeo-Christian ethics— particularly those morals pertaining to sex. In the words of Dr. Affenackt: “We want to avoid any unpleasant happenings.”
recognize it for what it was: a mixture of chimp and human love for a girl—Miss Simpson, the caretaker, and a not bad-looking woman. It certainly long over due when Budongo accosted kindly Miss Simpson alone in the reading room. He was every bit a gentleman. He simply told her in his soft simian voice, “I love you,” and proceeded to recite a poem he had composed just for her.
Budo was nineteen years old now and had been sexually mature for ten. He was painfully aware that he was “different”, and to further complicate matters, he often managed to smuggle the subject of sex, which after alt was long over due in his hfe, into the conversation, something the Doctor strongly discouraged. The good Doctor and his colleagues enjoyed discussing literature and other aspects of culture with Budongo, indeed Budongo was able to give some of them a few educational and philosophical ideas.His favorite work of literature was Melville’s Moby Dick (“I’ve always been fascinated by these intelligent mammals.”); his favorite hght reading, Tarzan, King of the Apes. He often expressed the sentiment that man had given the apes a “terrible black eye” with such tripe as Kir^ Kong.
Miss Simpson started with disbelief momentarily-then with belief. There upon she proceeded to scream in ever higher octaves, “He’s trying to attack me! He’s trying to attack me! The filthy ape’s trying to attack me!”
Unbeknown to his friends, Budo had fallen in love. They noticed his hstlessness, his empty stares at the opened pages of Desmond Morris’ The Naked Ape, but they failed to
Budo was stunned. “Why am I a filthy ape? I thing.. .feel.. .1 love like any other man on this earth. Why does she call me a filthy ape?—Why? Why?” Budo panicked. He tore out of the reading room with all possible effort, accidently knocking down Miss Simp son in the process. Out one door ran Budo; in another ran Affenackt and assistants; on the floor lay Miss Simpson screaming more and more hysterically. Affenackt rushed to his office, picked up his only memento of the army, a “45” automatic, and rushed out of the building in time to see Budo slip through the gate. Budo’s strength allowed him to cover much ground at first, but his general lack of exercise left him short on endurance. Affen ackt gave chase in his car. Budo
shpped down an alley and hid behind some garbage cans-but not without Affenackt’s notice. Affenackt got out of his car, knocked the 45’s safety to off—and walked toward the garbage can behind which crouched Budo. Budo thought to himself, “Why am I acting hke some irrational, blindly panicked animal? I will tell my good Doctor the sad story as it really happened; he will understand, and all will be well again as. . .” Budo put out his hand. Dr. Affenackt summoned all his powers to maintain his composure, his reason in the face of the great battle being fought in his mind: Should an ape of intellectual powers comparable to those of any average human being be given the same basic rights as given to all human beings? After all we generally define death in man as the irreversible destruction of the brain, and if the brain is thus the decisive factor, and if as much rational thought exudes from the brain of a chimpanzee as from. . .why not? “Oh, grab hold of yourself Hans boy! What are you going to do? Give him a court trial? But he is a thinking, rational creature. If I shoot him. I’m killing a fellow creature of thoughtman’s defining character. I’d be murdering. “Budongo put out his hand in the appeasement posture characteristic of all chimps. Hans thought, “He’s regressing? He’s just another animal once more?” He squeezed the trigger.
Magellan II All that travels at the speed of light is light. And he was light; for he alone could span those distances escaping sight; and so he journeyed out the widening cone. And galaxies grew younger as he shone along the rays that beamed their history; And he would have a story of his own to tell on his return, if that could be: For either he approached a boundary and passed into a region out of space, or shone forever, or began to see familiar landmarks of his starting place. Once more resplendent on his native ground, he told his friends: “The universe is round.”
Tourism at Shiloh Thunder, the war is over Thunder, the smoke has blown away by winds from the hollows of history the ghosts are gone among those wretched remnant pasts; and we stand mute upon the nurtured sod and watch the clash of light and shadow on bronze and marble men, and we are touristically amused by their eternal persistent ferocity. Charles Wm. Logsdon
Phoenix: W inter 1970
Phoenix: Winter 1970
Phoenix: Winter 1970
No Need for a Title and it is there because my eyes are open and because I hear it and feel it and I become it the sea Pulling away only to throw back in another place if I am blind than there are no colors if I am deaf than there are no sounds I lose existence if I lose feeling but i shall remember that I cannot stand forever on sand for the tide pullSit away. Bevot
Poem Henry was standing there, among a few friends (who I knew better than Henry). They were standing in front of a place, that was mine or so I felt, (yet i’ve never been there before) And he walked toward me and stared at me and I stared at him We began to walk out into the open land lavished with a thousand greens, abit of blue and trees like in a water color (his friends all smiled and watched) Henry and I never said a word but I felt a conversation We walked along the greens and it seemed to me that Henry had a gun shot in his side and blood on his shirt, but he kept his arm over it We came to little hills and dips and noticed a little island, just past a few more hills Try as we may, to reach this envisioned utopia we couldn’t. After each hill, the mossy dip would seem soaked with treacherous water we dare not touch I almost laughed at the “tag” game with water Henry’s face only reflected mine. I can’t remember what happened; seems like we kept going then everything faded, and blurred, and quit. Christine Griftner
Phoenix: Winter 1970
For Jeanette and C.B. Lotusland
Thru the dark summer fields a shadow is seen running, escaping, twisting past me with the speed of light. To capture it an odyssey portends, and so I wait, until I meet it again and have, once again, a chance to live.
Love is performing upon the mind Like strong, slender fingers Across harp strings— And love is a rushing, musical thing And colorful, Peaceful, and an orange-red glow On the glazed sorrow Of our meadow. Oh, but there’s time inserted Insidiously like a discordant chord. And time is the distance I can least afford. For with the time is the dying rhythm And dying, however beneficial. Is a separation. As, in a sense, a separation is a dying. It is hard upon my soul to say Oh lovers. Together love this day For all the days you will be dying— And love like tomorrow. Like this God was calling, “Here I exist, love or I too Will be dying.”
Our White Swan
Our white swan has left for Purer Lands. Will she return to quench our firey flames? Michael Galligan
We swim—glidingly Light reflects over our golden bodies We churn the water A blowing pin wheel Casts the breeze and twirls the twinkling bell We see the silver bird Preying on the tiffany lantern. In perfect rhythm we line the shore for the Passing Through
Trained to the mesmerist hand We gurgle the prayer—
Triangular bright red it plunges through the water, forcing sideless circles of triangles aside.
I shall not with pity or fear for disturbed mind Wish for you the chance of swan enlightment. Down upon thee who killed our flaming light For you will find your reward in the Undoing.
And when the triumphant wind dies so does the boat. K. C. Spengeman
You’re the turtle that bit the legs of the swan Which once cast its graceful s hadow in the early dawn Sending rippling waves to a shore which asked for nothing more Than co-existence with the Force. Cooper Miller
Phoenix: Winter 1970
Country Music: The Native Ameriean Art by Bruce Colbert
Editor's Note: This is part two of a two-part essay entitled, “The History of Country Music.’’ Part one was featured in the Fall ’69 issue of the Phoenix. Country music has suddenly found itself acceptable to many people over than those steeped in the tradition of the rural South. It has gained legitimation in this decade through what we might call a “national feeling” of social awareness. Although most circuit country singers might find little or no audience for their songs in suburban New Jersey, certain country-oriented rock bands and nationally recognized country singers can count on a substantial following. Johnny Cash, probably the most well know of the country singers, often sings about his youth on a tenant farm in Northeast Arkansas, which moves a generation of young people in the great megapolis to feel as if they might have really missed something not knowing good old rural hard times. Cash sings a different language to many. He sings of chopping cotton, fatback and pinto beans, and surprisingly of the poor family who faithfully says grace over these humble means. Nevertheless, country music is an art form and as with any art it requires a special way of viewing it. If you are going to understand and enjoy country music don’t approach it objectively. One must feel the frustration, the longing and the happiness. You’ve got to want to stamp your foot when Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs are pickin’ “Foggy Mountain Breakdown,” or bounce your head, then clap your hands with a resounding whack. This reaction certainly isn’t odd; people were reacting to American music the same way two hundred years ago. It’s apersonal involvement you must make to truly enjoy the music. Country ballads dug deep into an old Southerner’s heart but not always in a maudlin way. In “Dark As A Dungeon” song by Merle Travis, the coal miner doesn’t lament his hard hfe but tries to explain it; Pheonix: Winter 1 970
“I’s a many a man I’ve seen in my day Who lived just to labor his whole life away Like a fiend with his dope and a drunkard his wine A man will have lust for the lure of the mine I hope when I’m gone and the ages shall roll My Body will blacken and turn into coal Then I’ll look from the door of my heavenlyhome And pity the miner a digging my bones.” Travis relates a converstation that influence his writing the ballad: “I never will foi^et one time when I was on a little visit down home in Ebenezer, Kentucky. I was a-talkin’ to an old man that had known me ever since the day I was born-and an old friend of the family. He says. Son, you don’t know how lucky you are to have a nice job like you’ve got and don’t have to dig out a livin’ from under the old hills and hollers like me and your pappy used to. When I asked him why he never had left and tried some other kind of work, he said, Nawsir, you just won’t do that. If ever you get this old coal dust in your blood, you’re just gonna be a plain old coal miner as long as you live.’ He went on to say, “It’s a habit-sorta like chewin’ tobaccer.” Nothing did more for the spread of country sound than the electronic media it brought it from the hills to the radio receiver. Sitting before an old carbon microphone, a bearded 80-year-old fiddler. Uncle Jimmy Thompson, scrapes out lively hoedown music to launch radio station WSM’s Barn Dance. The announcer is George D. Hay, who has previously been associated with the WLS Barn Dance in Chicago, and who two years later accidentally gave the radio program a name that has stuck for 43 years, coming on the air on a Saturday in December, 1927 after the Music Appreciation Hour, a network
show carried by WSM, Hay introduced a harmonica player performing, “Pan American Blues.” “It will be down to earth for the earthy,” Hay said. And after Deford Bailey had completed his solo, including an imitation of a railroad locomotive. Hay adlibbed: “For the past hour we have been listening to music taken largely from the Grand Opera in New York. But from now on, we will present the Grand Ole Opry.” The name stuck and country music became the Grand Ole Opry. The Opry became the pinnacle in country music. All country artists strove to be regular members. When they’ve reached that goal they are “in.” Their careers are immediately onthe ascent. It opens doors everywhere. They can perform on tour under the banner of WSM’s Grand Ole Opry, be idenitfied on radio and television shows as members of the Opry, and generally be known as the finest in their field.
In the past, other big country music shows on radio stations have dwindled or died. Of course there are exceptions: such as, the “Lousiana Hayride,” on WKH in Shreveport, Louisiana, but foT the most part the barn dance shows of the 40’s and 50’s are gone. The Opry on the other hand, because of the country music industry in Nashville, grew up around it and flourished. The big barn dance shows didn’t die because of failing popularity, but from a lack of talent in their respective areas. Nashville had become the center of country music for the entire nation during the late 40’s, and this force drew “opry” guitar players from out their homes in the Tennessee hills and all over the rural South. Carrying only a few dollars in pocket-money and their battered guitars, thousands of young
singers traveled to Nashville and WSM hoping to hit the big time. A typical evening of song and emotion found Portor Waggoner in the spothne. Waggoner was singing an encore for his audience. The excitement grew with the realization that one of his ballads was about to be sung. (All country fans know that no one can sing a more moving song than Porter.) As the night were on. Porter shared the stage with other stars: Marty Bowes, Archie Campbell, Skeeter Davis, Leroy Van Dyke, Jim and Jesse, Flatt and Scruggs, Loretta Lynn and countless others. You are seeing a paradox. For here on each Saturday are 25 to 30 of top country talent in the business performing for a minimal fee of about $25. On tour, they would draw $400 to $1,000 or more a night, but here on the biggest country show in the world, their work is complimentary. There ate several reasons for this. One is exposure. On WSM, a 50,000 watt, dear-channel station, the performer is heard in many states and also Canada. In addition, there are more than 4,000 stations who use delayed broadcasts of the Opry. All performers consider the Opry home and are contributing in their way to make the country sound a viable national music. A country music show is never complete without a pinch of good old backwoods humor. This humor has been branded by many as crude and simple; it is that and more. It’s slapstick and pokes fun at the humdrum problems encountered in Ufe. It is crude, yes, in its delivery but it does not produce laughter because of the accents of its comics. Laughter comes because people feel that the entire thing is a put on; they know it’s imaginary and love it. Compared with other modes of humor, such as modern monolgists who tend to produce response in he subtle twisting of facts, country humor is not unduly simple; it merely recognizes that people want to laugh, and when they see someone of Archie Campbell’s caliber perform on stage, they do. Country humor is not just the telling of humorous anedotes or slap stick antics. Much laughter in evoked by the outlandish costumes worn by comies, such as String Bean and Minme Pearl. Minnie Pearl, who teamed up in 1948 with Rad Brasfield to form the Grand Ole Opry’s most popular team is known by thousands as the old fashioned lady, from Grinders Switch with a price tag stDl hanging from her hat and whose overall appearance is one of ridiculousness. Her early companion. Rad Brasfield, matched her not only in wit, but in ill-fitting store bought pants and jacket . The costumes, plus their obviously rehearsed banter bring tears of laughter. The Duke of Paducah, not actually a duke, but a rotund comic with zany dress and a lightning fast banjo pick, appeared in many shows with Opry regulars. Lonzo and Oscar also appeared for many years on the Opry as a straight man comic act with their primary appeal being the visual effect of Lonzo’s orange wig, and missing front teeth. Of course, the talent that all these performers had was still that of all countrymusic stars; they sang, hummed, whistled, and laughed. Their art was truly the expression of the American.
Phoenix: Winter 1970
The Other Side Of The Coin By John Sheddan he village lay quietly in the darkness. Inside the high walls the people slept. Beyond the walls stretch ed the desert; dry, cool, and silent. A heavy stillness lay over the village and desert, broken only by the distant screaming of a solitary Jackal and the sighing of the wind. The first rays of the sun crept softly across the tufted ridges of the mountains in the East and along the rooftops of the town and invading every nook and cranny with it’s golden fingers. A cock began to crow on the village wall, and somewhere a dog began to bark as the village awoke. Teo sat up and began to dress. He winced as he looked across the tiny hut at his father who had jarred the darkness with a painful cry. Teo slipped on his worn sandals and stepped sideways through the burlap that served as a door. He was careful not to wake his sleeping mother. He paused long enough to fill his lungs with clean, fragrant air, and then he set off at a rapid pace down the street. Tall and strong for a boy of twelve, Teo moved through the narrow streets with an effortless grace that contrasted with his grave, careworn face. He reached the village square, which was buzzing with the new day’s activity. In front of the marketplace he could hear the peddlers hawking their wares to the passersby. Slowly and shyly he entered the market building. Phoenix: Winter 1970
On each side stretched long rows of booths, each containing a table which was piled high with goods. Teo feasted his gaze on piles of leeks and melons, on birds already dressed for the oven, on the endless row of dried meat on skewers—all of them handily displayed for the customer’s convenient inspec tion. One sleek, bearded peddler began to call out to Teo. The peddler was attracted by Teo’s avid interest, but he held his tongue when he saw the boy’s ragged clothing. To the boy the treasure of the entire world seemed to have been stored in this huge room. His heart sank as he stared. With slow steps he turned away from the glittering display and went back to the street. Head down and with a heavy heart, he walked past the communal well, and the chattering women gathered there and outside the village gate. Ahead was the vast open plain. He walked aimlessly for a while and finally stopped under an overhanging rock and sat down. Yesterday he had visited a doctor in the village. The office had been cool in spite of the summer heat, and his feet had been soothed by the thick rugs on the floor. He had struggled to overcome his nervousness, but had finally spoken to the doctor. “Excuse me, sir, but I-my parents are very ill and they need care and medicine. Could you come to our
house and treat them?” “Where do you live, boy?” the doctor clasped his hands around his stomach and smiled. “In the quarter South of the village gate, sir.” “I see. Do you have any money for this visit?” “No, sir, if only—my father is Rali, best harness-maker in the town, but he has fallen ill; he is too ill to work, and we have reached the end of our savings. My mother is aihng too, and we cannot last, without. ..” “I am a busy man, boy. Why, just this morning I treated one of the wealthiest merchants in the village and was paid handsomely for my skills.” His eyes gleamed at the thought of jingling coins. He quivered once, sHghtly, and then reassumed his professional mask. “I have not time for you, boy.” He spread his hands, the jewels on his pudgy fingers winking in the fight. “If I begin treating the poor for no fee, I would be so busy I would not have time for my other patients. You under stand. ..” He smiled indulgently. The conversation ended. Teo had left hurriedly, his face burning with shame as he fled down the street. Teo’s reverie was broken by a whistling in a nearby olive tree. Two white doves settled on an upper limb and began cooing softly in the desert stillness. Teo watched idly; the low, muted threnody soothing his sore
heart. “I hope they don’t cross the path of a hungry hawk,” he said aloud. Suddenly Teo sat up, his scalp tingeled. An idea formed in his mind; a hope born of desperation. He leaped to his feet and ran towards the village. Dark shadow floated across the silent desert as the sun drowned the horizon in a roseate glow. A small group of weary boys trudged towards the village. They walked in ranks of two, and each pair carried a small wicker basket filled with fluttering doves. Teo walked proudly in the van, his plan a success. He thanked his friends for their help and carefully stored his baskets in the rear of his parents’ hut. “Where did you get the doves, my son?” his father’s voice was barely audible as he raised up on one elbow. “My friends from the street helped me trap them on the plain. We worked hard to build the traps, and we baited them with loose grain we found near the storage bins of the merchants. We were lucky, for the doves will soon fly away to the South and the desert will see no more of them until spring. Tomorrow I will seU them in the marketplace and we wiU have enough money to pay the doctor for treat ment and medicine for both of you.” Teo stopped out of breath. He went quickly to his mother who was in the corner of the room sobbing quietly, and put his arms around her. “Don’t cry,” he said, “soon you wiU be cured and back among your friends at the weU.” His mother patted his head and smiled at his through her tears. “I am crying because I am happy, dear Teo. We are thankful we have such a son as you.” Teo undressed and wriggled untU he was comfortable in the pile of musty blankets that served him for a bed. His head was spinning from the events of the day, but the soreness of his young Umbs went unnoticed as he dreamed himself to sleep. He awoke before dawn and ran to the marketplace with his precious
burden. He squatted beside the door. Soon the custodian appeared and unlocked the massive, ancient door with a heavy brass key. Teo trans ferred the baskets into the interior of the building and waited. He looked around at the emptiness of the vast haU, at the floors cluttered with refuse from the day’s business. Teo had once Ustened in awe to the tales of the old ones about the days when men had helped the sick and helpless in the viUage without thought of pay. There had been no marketplace in those forgotten days, and this old hall had been empty. It was filling fast, Teo noticed. The merchants and peddlers were already filing through the door. Teo located himself near a booth adjacent to the door, and he moved quickly out of the way as a bearded merchant approached. He looked side ways at the boy as he unlocked his booth. “What do you want here, young ragamuffin?” His jeweled fingers twinkled as he pulled a large leather pouch from the folds of his robe. He began stacking coins on the counter of the booth, handling the coins with a deft speed that was hard for the boy to follow. His tone was gruff.but there was no malice in it. “I-I want to sell my doves, but I have no space.” Teo looked pleadingly at the merchant. “This is not a place of charity,” he was told. “However, those are very succulent doves you have there, and business should be brisk today. The festival approaches, you know. They are indeed a delicacy.” He smacked his lips and stroked his beard. “What do you want for them?” He watched Teo covertly. “I wish to sell them for the full market price. Sir, but since 1 have no stall I am prepared to pay a portion of my profits to rent a space. Would you consider such a proposition?” “Aha! A young businessman! Very weU, you may use the end of my
counter for, ah, twenty-five percent of your total sales.” “I will pay you ten percent, for 1 have urgent need of the money.” “You do, do you! Very well, 1 accept. Perhaps I can learn from such a shrewd businessman as you. Ten percent it is.” The fat merchant busied himself with his stock of gold, paying no attention to Teo. The boy moved his doves behind the counter and display ed them so they could be inspected by the customers. Although the morning was stEl young, the huge room bustled with trade. Shopers roamed about pricing the wares and argue shrilly with the peddlers. Teo looked up in alarm to a sudden commotion at the door. A tail, muscular stranger pushed through the loafers with a quiet, deadly violence. He knocked them about with a heavy staff he held in both hands. When he gainded access to the nearer booths he began to lay about him with mighty swoops, one of which flattened the head of Teo’s partner. Another broke open the cages of doves and they fluttered noisily away. As he ducked to avoid the staff Teo caught a glimpse of the attacker’s face. The marveled at the calm, patrician cast of the still face above the terrible swinging staff. Never had he seen such fury, yet never had he seen such wisdom and peace as shone from the clear, brown eyes. In a twinkling the hall was in chaos. Booths were overturned, produce and merchandise scattered, and amid the din the shopkeepers ran pell-mell to the door. Teo lay on the floor while his world crashed about him. The stranger finally stopped mo tionless in the midst of the carnage he had created. He dropped his staff, an raised his arms above his head, and said in a voice infinitely tender and soft, “My Father, I have cleansed thy house for thee.” Phoenix: Winter 1 970
“On The Threshold of a Dream” (the Moody Blues) by Paul Haley T'he question is not whether George is insane, but is he beautiful? This be sort of a story about some crazy things that have been happening. It’s about discoveries in the freak district of some place or another and another Maybe they were already discovered probably; but they seem new andclose to the growing edge of our people. You know about the bhnd spot in each eye, and that when the dot disappears you have no sensation of anything missing, but rather you see as if in full and happy vision. And you know about “silent languages ” that people communicate by many means besides words. You may cross your legs and fold your arms and look away as you say, “That doesn’t interest me.” Or does it scare you a httle? And is it not significant that the radicals sit on the edges of the room and the leaders in places giving them the whole view of the room? What does it mean that you cover your eyes as you say that is most difficult (I mean that is well.)? It’s coming. Now I think I see it. Cover it as I will, I can see right through my hands. And in the silent languages, just as with words, there are many meanings, depending on the context and how you feel. Seldom, if ever, can one say in a way that will last through new experiences th^t this act means the same as the word. You know, in ways, we live in a world of Symbols: the words, the sighs, the sounds, the acts, the people, and the feelings we perceive out there and in here are parts or phases or moments of the whole cup of tea which is, in a word, like an alphabetic Phoenix: Winter 1970
soup in your head—cloudy, flowing with stars in your eyes. Spelling out the way, spelling out your experience, which is how you express yourself to yourself—I mean all that you see and feel is you creating yourself, express ing yourself, and teUing yourself who you are. I mean look in there. Is it not a valid outsight or is it out of sight .That is, do you have in you no eye with which to see? Will you ever know or can you ever be sure that what you read here is true? Can you hear this page of ink? Now is it here coming on? I mean if you listen softly you will see that they are screaming at you. That in this land is my land. Something’s happening here and what it is is that strange, mad barbarian who raves madlessly, ’tis of thee, for thee, in convoluted words, what is clearly insane to you or him or them are stealing your children away because they speak in the tongues and in the language of children! Which is in the tongues with which they slouchingly think they can refute your all with their mystic dehria and the colossus they think they have found which lies stirring in all men. They want you, children, because the new language is calling to be sung, and because you want you most of all. If you Uve in a symbol land and if only I and you could live the new words for that moment that I want it to be this way, just this forever sunshine, brisk and gasping perfect, only this because Woodstock, it seems, was a mother. The question is whether you, my love, are the child because I want you and I want to come closer to you and I want to touch you there—yes here.Oh if I can let go of me you can have I and if we today can be here released this is it. It was worth it. Nothing forgotten my love. If I go away or you go away then we must return always. See you then because your baby and your self and
you, and you, and you are on the edge and it’s breaking! God if I could be born now because you can and because getting together is like an ocean whose tides have begun. We are coming. Do you remember how I heard in 1965 from those crazy hippies that there is a movement and it is spreading and love and together and not your clothes or your class or your color or your title or any other category between you and yourself and me and yourself but you, wants you. But surely I clearly said those dirty people, I mean their drugs and their put-ons and their hang-uj)s and they are crazy. Do you remember when? I mean it seemed so strange for our friends in high school, 1 mean not them, you know, the long hair. Well, they weren’t really with it themselves although they did seem to be when 1 knew them before. I have seen those few spreading and perhaps you could count in the ways that count a milhon at the rock festival or Washington. “I never thought of myself as a freak but I sure love to freak” is how he said it in “Easy Rider.”
hen UT audiences watched “Genesis I” on the traditional movie screen, they were witnessing an evolu tion in film making. From intro duction to conclusion, none of the seventeen short films conformed to the expected patterns that movies usually assume. None of the plots normally utilized by directors could be found in this pot-pourri of photo graphy. These short films (the longest was sixteen minutes) were primarily experimentations of young photography enthusiasts, exploring untried techniques in cinematography. X-ray footage, color separation, solarization, positive-negative strobe, and the slow motion technique are
among the unconventional methods the visual artists chose to explore the untrodden paths of movie-making. Some of the sequences were humor ous, some serious, and others were created simply for artistic beauty of color and form. But whatever the subject or tone of the films, few in the audience could deny their fascination with the unexpected screen images. Some of the films were educational, such as “Untitled” (a peek at the interior of the human anatomy from conception to extinction) and “Child ren of Synanon,” a documentary-type movie, which eavesdropped on the honesty-oriented Synanon school children. Some films were realistic; for example, “1 Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free” portrayed the deUmna of a black community in the race-common struggle for equality. Others were surreaHstic, such as ‘The Matchseller,” a view of a young girl’s marriage fantasies. Many students expressed delight over “Orange,” a simple close-up study of the peeling of the familiar citrus fruit. Others were turned on by “7362,” the fusing of the mechanical with the human anatomy to produce a kaleidoscopic-psychedelic impression supported by weird echoing, vibrating sound effects. Most of the entries did not include prepared dialogue, but corresponding sound effects (music, or extempor aneous conversation) were actually more appropriate to the impression istic techniques. The most satisfying aspect of the whole series was the realization that the creators were capable of portraying familiar or what-could-be dull subjects (i.e. eating breakfast or spoofing t.v. commercials) by unique, entirely individual methods. Viewers who missed, as well as those who were excited by “Genesis I” can look for ward to “Genesis H” and other new programs, which are being considered by avant-garde producers. Genesis Films, Ltd., is anxious to meet filmmakers and screen new films. Infinite possibilities are awaiting young filmmakers who are dissatisfied
with standard procedures of visual creation. The results can be the sort that make people sit up and say,“ why hasn’t anyone thought of that be fore?”
worth the experience. Whether for party or for pleasure, the album is a collectors must.
by Sally Blanchard § Santana, a new group on the music
scene, is a break from hard rock, psychedelic, and folk music to a new variety of a driving beat with pulsating instrumentations. Santana’s first album, called San tana, simply enough, contains nine songs, most of them written by the members of the group: Carlos Santana, Mike Carrabello, Dave Brown, Jose Chepito Areas, Mike Shrieve, and Gregg Rolie. Outstanding in every song is the Latin-American beat, em phasized by bongos, maracas, organ, and guitars. The album is not tradi tional Latin- American music, but new individual sounds may remind the listener of a galloping horse with a touch of soul. “Evil Ways ” is a big single-seller. This song emits a slower beat, with “the old cowbell” holding in the background. The organ stands out in this selection. By contrast the group’s first seller, “Jingo,” begins with a strong and heavy beat resembling an African war dance. It is an instru mental with emphasis on a quasipsychedehc guitar solo. The group is as wild on-stage as it is on a record. One satisfied and impressed person commented, ‘The way they do their acrobatics routine while performing is fantastic!” The album Santana also contains three other vocals and four instru mentals. One of the instrumentals, “Treat” is a leading number which employs the use of a piano lead. The hottest number in the album is “Soul Sacrifice,” which is sort of an Afro-Latin beat-like song. Santana is a radically new concept in listening pleasure which is well
is a study in social interactions. The movie attempts to portray a communi cation gap in our human relationships and suggests how we might better get along with each other. Bob (Robert Culp) and Carol (Natalie Wood) visit and encounter group-sensitivity session resort in the Cahfornia mountains, where they are exposed to open, naked (literally as well as figuratively), human beings. The portrayal of what goes on in an encounter group, a potential danger for too heavy a directing hand, is well done in that the breakdown of personal defenses hap pens in a credible and very dramatic manner. Bob and Carol leave the encounter group impressed and with an evangelis tic gleam in their eyes. The complica tion arises when they try to use the games and gimics used in the en counter group to convert Ted and Alice to completely honest and utterly open interaction. Ted (Eliot Gould) and Alice (Diane Catmon), being conventional, reserved, and inhibited, are more embarrassed than converted. As time goes by, Ted gradually adapts to the situation; but Ahce gets more deeply involved in a personal conflict between her moral values and group pressure (mostly tacit but, nonethe less, very real to Ahce) to adopt a new set of values. Finally Ahce breaks under the confiict and coerces everyone into going to bed together. Her argument is that if they are going to be completely open with each other and really “love” each other, then the logical conclusion is to have sex with each other. They all get into bed, but they do not “make it” in the physical sense. They do, however, finally “make it” in the sense of a more ideal and mature love. The Phoenix: Winter 1970
point is that it is not the little games you play at the encounter group but rather it is an attitude of love and respect for ones fellow man that does make it. Generally, the flick was well con ceived. It elicited a great deal of laughter (both at oneself and the characters), as well as stimulating serious thought about the nature of interpersonal relations. Eliot Gould and Diane Cannon were excellent as a young, upper-middle class couple; at times up tight about sex, drugs, and changing morals, but always hu man .. .sometimes pathetically so.
I’m late? Well—hke-you know, or don’t you? You see I come from this little town in Botswana (that’s in Africa), and we don’t get the latest stuff over there. Sometimes it takes over a month to make a phone call from my hometown of Tati to the national capital of Gaberones. Man, it’s rought sitting in a chair for a month! Well, anyway, I bought this Beatle album the other day and thought I’d do a Uttle in-depth study on it. You know—hke—I’m cool and I want to “find things’’ too! Reality-oh where are you? Man, I teU you I’Ve got many things to tell you about “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.’’ You want me to start now, or do you want to hear more about my deep, drastically complex, philosophical train of thought? Let’s see. The first song in the album is “Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, and I think it’s nice. The second song, well, it’s all right too, but I have problems “grooving” (Wow!) with it. You see, the record is all scratched up; I got it second hand from an old beatnik (and that’s old) in New york City. Let’s go to the third number on this album. “Lucy In the Sky With Diamonds” is a song about a chic who goes for
Phoenix: Winter 1970
boat rides in a tangerine lake. Now, maybe you don’t believe this, but you listen to the song. Yeah, in a tangerine lake! They got the name for the song from stewardess who works fro United Airlines and wars diamond-rim glasses. I hope I’m not getting too deep for you. That’s a Uttle problem I have sometime; I think that all people have the same mentaUty. Stay with me. I mean—like—I know! Come on and open up your mind to me. (Wow! Groovy!) The next piece of Beatle art is “Fixing a Hole.” I wish that my Uncle Josh could hear this song because he’s a carpenter, and I know that he’d just “get down to the nitty gritty” of it. There’s a lot of meaning in this song. It’s about this philosophical school called “Zambezee.” The Zambezee school preaches that it is inadequate for complex inteUectuals to sophisti cate their molecular-shaped transmis sions while engaged in conflicts deaUng with caustic fantasies of duaUstic Yogi. “I’m wrong I’m right” and ‘There I will go” are two definite examples supporting my beUefs. The next song (We’d better forget the other one) appeals to run-aways; it’s called “She’s Leaving Home,” This crazy chic gets up five o’clock in the morning and skips town because her mother thinks she’s (her mother) a prostitute. Her father hangs around pool rooms and drinks a lot of beer, vut he wakes up at nine o’clock and finds his wife and his daughter are gone. The beer and the nine o’clock stand out in this song. You can almost reach your hand out and touch the beer and nine o’clock. Yeah, really—almost—even—like—you know! I think that I’ve been fooUng around too much in my review. Let’s skip the next two numbers and take a look at “Lovely Rita,” The Beatles employ the art of “plain talk” and “simplicity” to a combination of “double-talk” and “McKuenism.” Rita is a meter-maid, but she doesn’t give tickets like the ones around UT. No, this Rita gives out real food. She’s a cook, and she makes “tea” and cooks “dinner.” It’s a real tasty number!
“Good morning. Good Morning” makes me feel like I’m back in Botswana. You see, I grew up in the country, and we (my family) used to raise chickens, pigs, cows, and ele phants. Well, early in the morning the chickens used to crow, the pigs would oink, the cows would moo, and the elephants would coo. In this song I hear all of my old farm-land animals, and I think of home and the dawn of day. It surely is an aesthetic song, with the harmonica and trombone playing dual leads. Tiny Tim would say that “Good Morning, Good Morning” is a “Story of that old snake-in-the-grass, the Viper.” The next song I don’t understand, but the one after it I do. “A Day in The Life” exemplifies the modern-day man going through his monotonous chores: reading the newspaper, laugh ing at people, turning on women, winning wars, counting holes in a wall. Actually, it’s a put down on the Neo-Classical poets and Romantic shoemakers. And I don’t like nobody putting down people! Well, I gues that I’d better conclude my in-depth study at about this time. Maybe next quarter I’ll do a review on Elvis Presley or Fats Domino.
Lonely sky, pale blue and white sky the only way you seem to smile is when you look down upon all the stretching green things beneath. Lonely sky, pale blue and white sky the only way you seem to smile is when you look down upon all the stretching green things beneath.
The Hairy Crown Cont. from page 8 Story just interview.”
the end of the
The story that I referred Paula to said that Franklin had left campus that morning to address a convention in Hartford. It added that he could not be reached before he left. A secretary said that he would be back “in a few days.” “Hmmm .. .not too good, right?” Paula said as she stared down at the page. That afternoon as I passed by the Student Center on my way home, I noticed a crowd of students on the front steps. I crossed the street and joined the group in time to hear the final remarks of Dave Ford. “Some people have told me that we’re up against a brick wall, that we’re just wasting our time trying to reason our way through the deaf ears of the administration. Well, maybe they’re right about reason and verbal persuasion, maybe they’re right that Franklin doesn’t want to sit down with me and James Hesslen to talk over the demands. Maybe they’re right that Franklin won’t hsten to me. But I believe he will Usten to you,” he extended his arms to include the whole gathering. “I believe he will listen if you all come out tomorrow night and indicate your support. Oh sure, he’s in Hartford and may not be here tomorrow, but if enough of you come, and if you all shout loud enough, we’ll make him listen! He’ll have to listen! So give us your voice, give us your help, give us your support, and we’ll find the way out. We’ll make Franklin come out from behind his wall and we’ll bring him down and out! We’ll make him take action on the demands you know are right.” Ford paused then he shouted, “we’ll make him listen! We’ll get something done!” 1 left the Student Center, and walked past the Physics Building, down Connecticut Street, alone. I stopped in front of the Library, sat down on a bench, and began to write. It was the first idea I had had on my
story and I wrote quickly. The expression, the separate thoughts, the ideas all merged on the paper in black, indistinct, quickly drawn lines. I wrote two pages in a fit. The street, buildings, trees, people, all fell away as I watched my marks form on the paper. I wrote to the end of the second page, then looked up from the paper, my eyes momentarily blurred from their concentration. I flipped over the notes to the first page and wrote “The Way Out” in the margin at the top. I closed my notebook, stood up, and walked home putting the thoughts out of my mind. I watched the people pass me on the streets. 1 felt good. At my apartment, I ate, took a shower, dressed, and tried to study. I was thinking too hard about Hesslen and Franklin. What was Hesslen planning? Why didn’t Franklin make a sincere effort to explain his brush-off of the demands? What would the rally accomphsh? What kind of move would Hesslen make after the rally? Why did Franklin leave campus, and would he be back in time—in time for what? What made this whole affair seem ominous? Why did I think that something was going to happen? What was going to happen? Why? What the hell, I thought, opening my literature book, nothing will happen at old Massington. On Friday, classes were held as usual, but I could sense excitement in the faces of those students who had read about the rally in the Statement. Dozens of students stood on the street corners passing out sheets with “Rally For Action” printed in bold letters at the top. A girl in front of me read one of the sheets and turned to her friend. “You going?” “Naw, I don’t care about all this rally stuff. Are you?” “Hell, yes. I think that Franklin should be told ... .” They were lost in the crowd in front of the Social Science Building and I could catch no more of their conversa tion. In one of my later classes, the
professor began by asking about Hesslen and what everyone thought of him and the demands. Several students responded, and feeling heady by this new communication with his class, the prof mentioned the rally and asked if this “wasn’t doing the Columbia thing?” The class met him with a stony silence and the prof beat an orderly, embarrassed, retreat to Coleridge. The rally was scheduled to begin at eleven, and Paula and I got to Henson Park anout 10:30. There were perhaps a hundred students already in the park; huddled together under blankets, talking and smoking. Marijuana-I could tell when I got closer. A car full of yelling, well-lipuored guys came racing around a corner, breaking the relative calm with their noise and a badly thrown beer can. No one in the park paid them any attention. We walked around the park. The trees and shrubs, and people, we ghostly in the pale light from the old street lamps. A cold and determined crew of maintenance workers were setting up the speaker system, and were working quickly in the strange silence. We passed a circle of students huddled together sharing a joint. 1 heard them talking as we went by. “Hey, I heard Hesslen’s bombed tonight.” They laughed. “You kidding?” one of them asked. “On this, his biggest night?” “Yeah Wild, man.” So, I thought, Hesslen is stoned. I wondered if it was true. Paula and I sat with some friends near the raised speaker’s stand and waited for Hesslen to arrive. At 11:15 we heard a commotion behind the platform; loud voices, applause, and then David Ford emerged, hoisting himself up on the stand. He was greeted with applause and cheering, and I looked back at the thickening crowd. About a thousand now, maybe more. Pretty good turn out for a cold Friday night. Ford was brief and informal with a speech intended to warm the crowd up Phoenix: Winter 1970
for Hesslen. He spoke for five minutes and ended with: “There was a time when Massington was a happy, con tent, little haven, far from the problems of the world. A place where a guy could come for a little relaxation, where he could study poverty on a full stomach and in a warm room, where he allowed the less privileged to go off to fight in an insane war. But now, times are changing; the students sees things as they really are, and he wants things to be as they should be. Things are changing, and Massington is changing, and there’s one guy whose responsible for what’s been going on this week.” Ford half turned away from the audience, and invited the new speaker. “Jimmy.” Hesslen was on the stage, and he walked quickly to the podium. He smiled at the crowd and nodded curtly to Ford. He grasped the wooden stand with both hands, waited for the applause and cheering to die, and stared out at his audience with a determined, rather impatient expres sion on his face. Very impressive, I thought, he doesn’t even look drunk. Hesslen began in a quiet, abrupt voice. “I’d like to thank you for coming. Only, both you and I know that’s not the reason at all. I can’t thank you for coming out to demand the rights that naturally should be yours. I can’t thank you for taking the time to take what’s already your own.” His voice grew in intensity. “Students of Massington, you’ve been robbed! You’ve been robbed for years and haven’t know it. Dave said you were content before all of this happened. Content! And he’s right! Content to get the good grade, get the degree, get the good job, get your own little niche in this ugle, terrible system. Don’t you see? You serve this institution hke the nigger served his master! This racist, imperialistic, hatefilled, money-grabbing, oppressive pig of a system,” his hand pounded the podium with each adjective, “pig of a society! Do the words scare you? Wake up!” He turned quickly to the right and left as he spoke. His voice grew to a shout. “Whv do you think Franklin Phoenix: Wintsr 1970
won’t talk? Why? Because he’s scared. Scared! Afraid that we’ll catch on to his lies, afraid that we’ll rise up and shout hke we’re doing now! Afraid that we’ll march against him like our brothers marched at Harvard and Columbia, and Cornell.” Hesslen stepped away from the podium. “Who’s with me? Who’ll march to the black heart of this institution? Who’ll come with me to the Administration Building?” The crowd begain to stir around the stand; some were uneasy about the things Hesslen was shoutin, some were caught up by his fire. Hesslen stepped up to the microphone his voice intense and direct. “Our brothers marched at Harvard, marched because they had to, marched to throw their bodies on the wheels of this machine that is out to destroy us all. Brothers and sisters, let us march! Let us find our voice! Let us add our voices to theirs! Come with me to the Admini stration Building. Come and let us tell FrankUn what it’s all about. If no one else will, or can, we can still tell it like it is!” He stepped back from the podium with his fist raised n answer to the scattered cheers. The crowd stood when Hesslen jumped off of the platform and began to urge them on. They moved towards the Administra tion Building three blocks away. I sat with Paula and watched them go. God, I thought, what a disappoint ment. A disappointment for Hesslen. Less than half the crowd. Maybe three hundred stragglers and drunks. They won’t get far. I looked at Paula. We had the same thought. We weren’t willing to waste a good evening. The apartment was silent and dark when we got home. I walked through! the kitchen into the living room turned on the lamp at the desk, and lit a cigarette. My notebook was on the desk. I picked up my pen and wrote; words filtered out of me, ran through my mind. A good description, a bad adjective (like an unwanted flake of dandruff), an analogy; and my pen touched the paper, moved with words its seemed to form of its own paper, moved with words its seemed to form of its own accord, scribbling to keep
up with the force of its movement, quickly from line to line in a rush of straight and twisted thought, and jumped nervously with excitement, and formed unintelligible squiggles. Squiggles that were the reality of mysterious imagination, the meta physics of creastion. I felt sure of that, and I felt sure of the things that I wrote. I stayed at my desk and ground through hours of writing, my cigarette burning to ashes while I followed the threads of my ideas. I remained there until the girl I was with laughed from the dark fog of her sleep. I set aside my pen and rubbed my burning eyes. An ash try full of cigarettes, pages full of writing. I closed my notebook. I went into the bedroom, and Paula, and sleep. I lay on the tracks, drunk, humming some crazy song that I had never heard before. I thought how confortable train tracks really were, once you laid down on them. I heard a train whistle far away, two short, muffled blasts, far down the tracks. I rolled over and groaned, and thought that I had better get the hell off the tracks before the .. .then two more blasts, and God so close .. .too close. I pushed against the iron rails, and tried to force myself up .. .the blasts right above me ... where did they come from .. .get up.. .get----The phone rang again. Somehow I got it on the first fumbling attempt. “Mumph.” “Jack?” “Mumph.” “ARE YOU AWAKE? ” it was Harry O’Donnell. Come on, Harry, not so loud, be soft, get it over with, please, I thought. “Yeah, Harry hatsa matta?” “Jack, Jim Hesslen is dead.” ' Closed my eyes and mashed my face into the pillow, and tried to get my mind working. Hesslen ... Hesslen dead .. .how .. .what...? “Jack. Jack, are you there?” “Yeah.” I sat up on the side of the bed and turned on the lamp. I gropped for a pen and some paper. I allowed Harry to talk without
interruption. The march on the Ad ministration Building had developed into a small mob when the straights dropped out, and some more drunks joined. When they reached the building a Une of poUce faced them, and forced them to halt at the entrance. There was some name calling and threats,and someone threw a rock and broke a window. The police line held and it seemed as if the danger might pass. Then someone yelled, “Frank lin’s house,” and three-hundred stu dents, frustrated and angry, aware of their strength as a mob, raced through the campus streets, picking up rocks and sticks, yelling to the dorms for support. A Une of poUce cars blocked the street where FrankUn Uved, but it couldn’t stop the rush. There were four hundred students now. Harry stood acorss the street and watched as the mob charged FrankUn’s house. A phalanx of poUce stood in front of the house. Both sides paused and seemed to gather force. Harry could hear shoutin from the ranks of students, but he couldn’t determine if it was Hesslen urging the mob on. There was some activity behind the police Une. Tear gas was being distributed. Suddenly the mob charged, smashed into the calm blue Une. FrankUn’s yard became a swirUng mass of blue shirts and white riot helmets, swinging club rocks, sticks, set off in the erie flash of blue Ughts from the poUce cars. The wail of sirens was heard racing down the street. Tear gas exploded, its smoke drifting among the struggUng figures. The mob began to break apart. More poUce arrived in the street and pushed at the students from their flanks. The students ran several poUcemen chased them. One officer stood in the middle of the street, his club raised, and a young man at his feet. The youth raised his arms over his head for protection. The club came down. In the flashing blue Ught a deter mined Une of poUce shoved at the mob and dodged the flying rocks. The mob finaUy broke apart and ran in panic down the dark campus streets. It was over by one o’clock and Harry went home. A friend caUed him at 2:30 and told him that Hesslen had
been hospitaUzed with a concussion. Harry drove to the hospital and waited with a group of Hesslen’s friends. They waited for an hour, but there seemed to be a breakdown in hospital communication. At four o’clock Harry was aUowed into the emergency ward. A doctor told him that Hasslen was DOA. Dead on arrival; kiUed by a blow to the skuU. He had been pronounced dead at 1:30, but the doctor told Harry that he was the first reporter to know. Things have been a mess tonight, he told Harry. I listened on the phone as Harry said, “Oh, by the way, I heard that Franklin is back in town. He got in last night. He was in his house when it all happened.” “Harry, where’s Dave Ford?” “I don’t know. I haven’t seen him for hours.” “Where are you now?” “Press room at the Statement. ” “Look, meet me down at FrankUn’s house. There may be some more trouble.” “Okay.”
Some television cameras were set up. We stopped beside one of the cameras. A reporter held a microphone and spoke quickly into the eye of the whirring machine. “I’m standing across the street from the home of James FrankUn, President of Massington College. It was here, a few yards from where I’m standing,” he glanced over his shoulder in the direction of the street, “that students and poUce clashed a few hours ago. It was a violent clash that ended with the death of one student, a student who was a leader on campus,” he consulted his notes, “twenty-four year old Frank Hesslen.” “PoUce report that 47 students were arrested last night as a result of the confrontation, and that more than fifty students are being treated at the local hospital. More reports on that will come later. “Although the crisis is over, now, there are questions that remain; questions that will be raised con cerning the actions of those forces on both sides of the,” and he paused and searched for a word, “battle.”
I hung up. Paula lay on her side in the bed with her head propped in her hand, and was watching me curious ly. 1 told her what had happened. She said very softly, “Oh God, that’s bad .. . that’s very bad.” A semicircle, half a block wide, had been roped off in front of FrankUn’s house. A crowd of students were gathered around it. I saw Dave Ford behind the rope with some of his friends from the Council. They were all wearing black armbands. The area inside the ropes was a shambles. Glass lay scattered in the street, a car was badly damaged with huge dents in its sides, and aU of its windows smashed. The two front windows of FrankUn’s house were broken, and a splash of red paint was spread down the front waU. I could see blood spots on th street, but perhaps it was just red paint. Phoenix: Wintar 1970
be someone with the right solution, I thought. I turned the corner of the street and almost ran into a boy who stood passing out some sheets of paper. He gave me one, and stood stamping his cold feet on the pavement, his breath a cloud of steam as he breathed. “Happy Thanksgiving,” the paper read. “Lower prices doesn’t mean lower quality. Come to Ozzington’s for a great turkey dinner.” What a heart-warming thought. Well, everything’s back to normal. I thought of all that had happened furing the week. And, I thought of the story I was writing. No, it was not back to normal. It never would be. I folded the “Happy Thanksgiving” paper and put it in my coat pocket. I stuck my hands in my pockets and turned to my apartment. I was going to finish my story. He turned and looked briefly at the house across the street. It was blue in the early morning light. The reporter turned back to the camera with a significant look. “Questions that are almost sure to damage, if not shatter, the career of the man in that house.” He pressed his earpiece. “Why wouldn’t he talk with the students before passions were inflamed beyond reason?” He paused and pressed his earpiece again. Then he finished quickly, “and, as I am sure you all are wondering, why is a young man dead? And why did it have to happen here? Now, back to you, Steve.” Why had it happened here? When I looked around a group of students had gathered. Students who came out on a cold Saturday morning, leaving their warm beds to come out when they heard the news. Some of the students had flowers clutched in their hands and many wore armbands. All of the students stood silent and looked across the rope barrier at the police. A girl turned to the arms of her companion and cried softly. More students joined the group, walking silently across the cold morning campus, and stopping in front of the rope barrier. A sharp command from the police ranks broke the stillness in the street. Phoenix; Winter 1970
Several policemen walked onto the street and began to draw chalk lines on the asphalt. Their boots crunched on the broken glass. The students watched the officers. I made an excuse to Paula and walked away. I was dismayed by the scene. Something more than a rope separated the students and the police men. Something more than the cut of their hair, or the difference of their expressions, or intentions, or am bitions. The police conducted their investigation. The officers behind the rope turned to one another to share their confusion. They looked across the rope, the glass, the smashed car, at the silent waiting students. Everyone looked across something, and nothing passed between them. I felt that I was a part of neither, and I walked away. Massington looked bleak in the morning light. It was pondering its sins, I thought. Today is Saturday. On Monday morning, the Statement will carry a black border, eulogies, charges and countercharges. Questions will be asked, the man had said, but there would be more questions than answers. And the answers would all be different. Each answer different than the one before. Everyone would have a way out of this dilemna. There must
Psalms 68: 20-21. “Our God is a God of salvation; and to God, the Lord, belongs escape from death. But God wiU shatter the heads of his enemies, the hairy crown of him who walks in his guilty ways.” The End.
Scene of a Modem Funeral
The flowered friends were few. But the befriended flowers flew. Casting gusts of green glare. On the desolate affair. The counted footsteps footed. No sound of trumpet muted. And although they lay in peace. Their matter is not deceased.
K. C. Spengeman
Would you believe!!!