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Friday, 21 February 2014

One Last Postcard from Pete Seeger

I was thrilled with the responses to my posts on Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie, following Pete Seeger's death. emails came from some of the authors I had cited, including Ronald Cohen, who had been alerted to the posts by Will Kaufman. Another welcome comment came from Ed Darrell, host of the always informative and interesting Millard Fillmore's Bathtub website ( I love that title). Ed, like me, is "striving for accuracy in history" - so hard to find these days! (By the way, Ed, there was identifying information with that Pete Seeger at a typewriter photo: it was taken by Rowland Scherman at the Newport Folk Festival in 1963.) I was especially pleased by Ed linking to my Lion Sleeps Tonight post. Talk about striving for accuracy ... 
Ed also linked to Postcards from Old Pete. By coincidence, Ronald Cohen sent me an image of what must have one of Pete Seeger's last postcards. As Ronald said, "It sums up his life, always caring and studying and thinking":
Since brass, nor stone, nor earth, nor boundless sea,
But sad mortality o'er-sways their power,
How with this rage shall beauty hold a plea,
Whose action is no stronger than a flower?
O, how shall summer's honey breath hold out
Against the wreckful siege of battering days,
When rocks impregnable are not so stout,
Nor gates of steel so strong, but Time decays?
O fearful meditation! where, alack,
Shall Time's best jewel from Time's chest lie hid?
Or what strong hand can hold his swift foot back?
Or who his spoil of beauty can forbid?
O, none, unless this miracle have might,
That in black ink my love may still shine bright.

–William Shakespeare

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