for the poppies blossoming on shirts like gunshot wounds yesterday

child soldier
Originally uploaded by Foxtongue.

The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner

by Randall Jarrell

From my mother’s sleep I fell into the State,
And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze.
Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life,
I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters.
When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose.

“A ball turret was a Plexiglas sphere set into the belly of a B-17 or B-24, and inhabited by two .50 caliber machine-guns and one man, a short small man. When this gunner tracked with his machine guns a fighter attacking his bomber from below, he revolved with the turret; hunched upside-down in his little sphere, he looked like the foetus in the womb. The fighters which attacked him were armed with cannon firing explosive shells. The hose was a steam hose.” — Jarrell’s note.

like the sunrise in the morning

To everyone who’s been offering time as a volunteer:

I’d appreciate if you could write me out a list of what sort of hours you have to give and what kind of skills, even if it’s only an offer of four hours a week helping move boxes. Everything counts. If you paint, mention painting, if you have practice handling a till, say so. I’m looking for everything possible.

I’m also looking for people who are willing to stand on street corners and poll people. I need to have numbers I can point people to, and the easiest way for us to do that is stand out on a Saturday and simply ask people walking past. “Hey, we’re starting a new venue in town. I was wondering if you could answer some questions we’re curious about?” Points: Broadway & Commercial, 1st and Commercial, various skytrain stations.

Pollsters, I’d also like if you could hit up the businesses along the Drive while you’re out there and try and find us some allies. If you know business owners or even employees, that’s a bonus. I’m going to be looking up the Commercial Drive Business Improvement people, (as they must exist), and going through the list to try and find people willing to help. Sponsors, etcetera.

If you don’t have the time for that sort of thing, it would even be lovely if you would write me a letter of support, especially if you’re an artist and you can state that you want to either hire my venue or show in the gallery. I’m going to try and find time, somehow, to approach the mayor’s office and get one from him, as well as hit up the local M.P. I think it’s still Lief’s mother, but I don’t actually know. I want to ask the Vancouver Arts Alliance, New Music West, the Jazz Festival, and anyone else you can think of. If you have the time to spare and can take any of that off my hands, I can send you the press release, that would be amazing.

I’ve been given the name of the insurance company I should be using, Shephard Ashmore. I’m going to call them Monday after I talk to Leonard Schein.

The pitch goes out when the website goes live.

FYI: Heroes, that show everyone’s been talking about, completely deserves its hype. It’s boldly scripted, continually inventive and refreshingly funny. Hooray taking back television and not talking down to the audience.