A Guest Piece from Sam Jennings / Henri-Antoine D’Aureville
It’s what keeps me coming back, the mental nourishment.
Thank you both,
Justin Smith-Ruiu and Sam Jennings.
Bravo, Sammy, I've got to hand it to ya! This was...ingenious! Yet, here in my first comment on the Hinternet, I was moved to break the silence, so to speak, and from the void, as it were, in order to backfill the gaps of your story with the concretinous riprap of my own, recent and revelatory find. For not last week, right here in good 'ol Cedar Rapids (the Heartland), and not far from where your Lucky Charms (TM) are assembled, runs a spur of the ADM-XPress, the line South for dirty trumblers delivering dextrosahol directly into yer cereal. It was along this rusty alley that I encountered, well, first a hobo (and you'll excuse this term, for I am old and poor and uncertain of its current purchase price and so use it with whatever fondness my intention can buy), and then his squat: a brick-built plunker with thick slab on either end to keep the worms and rain out. Even if leery of me, he was not hesitant with his stories--a good Midwesterner, that--and proceeded to tell me about the hovel we then shared, its history and significance (despite present appearances or, ah, appurtenances). (Later, for his time and tale, I gave him the copy of 'Miss MacIntosh, My Darling' I'd been carrying). Anyways, he'd worked here in this very building in the '70s when it was a butcher shop serving this hamlet of General Mills workers with all cuts of prized Iowa pork, and some camel too. "Matter of fact," he says to me, "it was here that I met my one and only love." The cue was apparent, and noble, and so I lit him a joint and eased back into the straw and folded my hands in preparation for reminiscence. Well, by gum, if it wasn't the strange story of Rebecca Sayer that your Frenchman had compiled heretofore, save the highfalutin ponderings and provenance, mind ya. As it turns out, Sayer left the West after her daughter's tragedy, and veritably rode the rails like my good man here. It was in dear CR that she was finally received with something like honest appraisal, a reckoning she'd been searching for since those haunted California happenings. "She comes up the counter, where I was, this poor, beautiful woman," he says, "and asks for pigs feet. And so I says to her, 'what for?' Cause not a lot of the people here were asking for feet, you see. And she says she wants to make crubeens and corn for the other vagrants. Crubeens! Well Jesus if that wasn't my dead Irish mother's favorite dish." He went on to tell me that after a courtship of sorts they married, bought a house, had two kids (now some might add "&tc." or something like that at this point, but that's not how "settling down" is understood by those telling their own story). Anyway, I've chewed enough ear or plucked the eye, or whathaveyou...of particular interest to you folks is that our Sayer ended up in radio, a late night jazz show on KCCK that ran until the mid-90s and was quite popular among those in the know and not a little bit responsible for some of the goodly appreciation of the art here in this place. Unfortunately she succumbed to cancer, like so many here in our region. Well between that and the kids finding their own places, my man here took to hoboing, finding, though not ever again as he once knew them, those spaces he once knew. I myself used to listen to that station, and likely even her voice, sometimes, when driving back in from an overland haul. Funny enough, I also know that back in the 80's, for a time, it was once owned by a curious fellow by the name Vilko Jennings, former magician turned auctioneer, millionaire, and something of a recluse. Any relation, Sam?
c’est parfait, absolutement! 🍨👏
nice. (especially after i dubiously google "muskrat french" & discover it's a real thing!) the politically-eclipsed "cubist exhibition of 1936" puts me in mind of that fateful 6th number of Caballo Verde: https://banzufalemusycei.blogspot.com/2019/06/poet-facebook-activist.html ... mrh