Wednesday, November 25, 2015

"We Say Thank You to the Earth" and Happy Thanksgiving!

by Joanne Shenandoah/Lawrence Laughing
(this poem translates Lawrence Laughing's language verbatim)


"In respect to our home the earth, we say thank you to the earth
For everything she gives us, nourishing us every day.
We give thanks to all the water in the world, everything within that water.
We give thanks to all the grass that lives on the land.
We give thanks to all the berries, the fruits, the medicines.

We give thanks to the animals that keep the forests clean.
We give thanks to all the trees for their different uses that they give to us,
For shelters, for fires that we make in the winter time keeping us warm.

We give thanks to the birds who sing their beautiful songs.
We give thanks to the four winds.
We give thanks to the grandfathers, the ones that bring rain.
We give thanks to our oldest brother, the sun, who shines his light every day.

We give thanks to our oldest grandmother, the moon,
For she is the one that has been charged with the duty
To make sure that light has a continuance.
She is the one that watches over all the movements
Of the water and also the water within us.
We give thanks to the stars, her helper.

And we give a special thanksgiving to the four sacred beings
That watch over the human family.
Sometimes we notice them when we are traveling in dangerous places.
They are the ones that come to our minds
And say go around, don't go further
To protect us and steer us away from danger.

So that's what we do.
We start right from the earth and we climb the ladder
Right to the special place beyond the heavens
Where there's a special spirit that lives there,
The spirit that makes it possible for us to be here
And everything that we have mentioned.

And so with collectiveness of our hearts and minds
We send a special thanksgiving and greeting to the spirit of us all."

Happy Thanksgiving!

Prayer for Peace, Lawrence Laughing

Lawrence Laughing

Mother Earth, Joanne Shenandoah

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Holiday gift shopping, already?

Can you believe? Where did 2015 go? Holiday gift shopping ads scream it's that time of year. Of the thousands of ideas, here are a few suggestions that clicked with me, and may with you.

While my brother was still alive, for my birthday he gave me The Beatles 1 cd. So many wonderful memories!

1 is a compilation album originally released in November 2000. It features virtually every number-one single achieved in the United Kingdom and United States from 1962 to 1970 by the Beatles. Issued on the 30th anniversary of the band's break-up, it was their first compilation available on only one compact disc. 1 was a commercial success, and topped the charts worldwide.

The Beatles 1 is now available on DVD:

The above link from Paul McCartney's website describing what one will receive from the newly released Beatles 1 Video Collection; in-depth promotional films and videos; the deluxe edition including 50 films and videos.
For Bob Dylan fans: The Best of the Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 12
For Bruce Springsteen lovers,
The Ties That Bind
The Ties That Bind features 52 tracks on four CDs plus four hours of never-before-seen video on two Blu-rays. It includes eleven previously unreleased rarities including Meet Me In The City.
Chrissie Hynde's book Reckless: My Life as a Pretender is now available.
An excerpt from the NY Times' book review: There are a number of fine moments in “Reckless,” which, at its best, is a sensitive and rowdy coming-of-age story. Ms. Hynde figured it out as she went along. “I thought if I kept not doing what I didn’t want to do,” she says, “I would naturally get closer to what I did want.”
For jazz lovers, The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire
"The Jazz Standards, a comprehensive guide to the most important jazz compositions, is a unique resource, a browser's companion, and an invaluable introduction to the art form. This essential book for music lovers tells the story of more than 250 key jazz songs, and includes a listening guide to more than 2,000 recordings.
Author Ted Gioia, whose body of work includes the award-winning The History of Jazz and Delta Blues, is the perfect guide to lead readers through the classics of the genre. As a jazz pianist and recording artist, he has performed these songs for decades. As a music historian and critic, he has gained a reputation as a leading expert on jazz. Here he draws on his deep experience with this music in creating the ultimate work on the subject.

An introduction for new fans, a useful handbook for jazz enthusiasts and performers, and an important reference for students and educators, The Jazz Standards belongs on the shelf of every serious jazz lover or musician."
For classical music lovers is the beautiful book The Steinway Collection: Paintings of Great Composers:

"Music lovers will delight in the beautiful color paintings and eloquent prose portraits in The Steinway Collection: Paintings of Great Composers. Chopin, Wagner, Liszt, Beethoven, Berlioz, Mozart, Verdi, Mendelssohn, Handel, and Schubert are among the composers celebrated in this historic book, which was originally printed in 1919 as an in-house publication of Steinway & Sons but has never before been released to the public. The paintings by esteemed American artists and accompanying essays by the brilliant critic James Gibbons Huneker are intended, in Mr. Huneker's words, to "evoke musical visions; for music is visionary, notwithstanding its primal appeal to the ear." An introduction by acclaimed broadcaster and writer David Dubal, Juilliard professor of piano literature, gives the book historical perspective."
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's book Mycroft Holmes is a fun compliment for the Sherlock Holmes' afficianado.
"Before the golden age of Sherlock Holmes in London, another Holmes with a superior mind
jumped around town sorting out minor oddities. Mycroft Holmes blows a hole in Doyle’s canon to make room for the brother who may have taught his younger brother a thing or two.
But wait, didn’t this author play basketball? Isn’t he the guy who taught Uncle Jessie to sink a free throw on Full House? Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is not only an NBA legend, he is also a massive Sherlock Holmes fan. The mystery that Abdul-Jabbar and Waterhouse build from local myth to government scandal is enticing and unpredictable, keeping readers guessing what mess Mycroft will find himself in next. It also sets up an entire backstory that explains how Mycroft Holmes became the man in the pocket of the British Crown when Sherlock comes onto the scene.
The mystery at the center of Mycroft Holmes proves to be just as thrilling and full of twists as if Sherlock himself were on the case. For all the modern retellings of the Holmes brothers and Sherlock’s adventures, the choice to not only set the story in the late 1800s, but mimicking the voice of Doyle is refreshing. The partnership and friendship between Douglas and Holmes is well-developed and one that you will grow to care about deeply as the story unfolds.
The backstory constructed for Mycroft Holmes by Abdul-Jabbar and Waterhouse is sure to earn a place in the early canon of the Holmes brothers’ tales. Fans of Doyle’s original tales will take more pleasure in Mycroft Holmes than those who enjoy more modern retellings of the Holmes brothers.
Holmes and Douglas’ journey from England to Trinidad is familiar to the tales of Holmes and Watson, but Mycroft comes into his own character and not merely a shadow of the brother we all know and love. At times Mycroft’s oddities are frustratingly similar to Sherlock, however, Mycroft Holmes breathes life into the character that could have easily shaped the Sherlock Holmes Doyle penned into existence."
For movie lovers, TCM's Greatest Holiday Classic Films.
Includes Christmas in Connecticut; A Christmas Carol, The Shop Around the Corner, and It Happened on 5th Avenue.
And for anyone who would want, in addition, or help the environment, a tree can always be planted at the Arbor Day Foundation


Happy shopping!

Love Me Do, The Beatles

Like a Rolling Stone, Bob Dylan

The River, Bruce Springsteen

2000 Miles, Chrissie Hynde & The Pretenders

Mood Indigo, Duke Ellington & His Orchestra

Raindrop Prelude by Chopin, performed by Alicia Keys

Spies, Coldplay

The Shop Around The Corner starring Jimmy Stewart, Margaret Sullivan

The Memory of Trees, Enya