Lucky Are Those Who Don’t Have This Wish

But I do.

“I wish the rent

Was heaven sent.”

Langston Hughes, “Little Lyric (of Great Importance)”


A Wrinkle in the Narrative of White Supremacy

The narrative of white supremacy in America has predominantly been a masculine one, conceived through a masculine lens, if you will.

In her book, “Mothers of Massive Resistance: White Women and the Politics of White Supremacy,” Elizabeth Gillespie McRae of Western Carolina University, argues that the story of white supremacy is also a story of women.

Professor McRae presents her ideas in a nutshell in the New York Times.

The “Able-Bodied” American

As the New York Times points out, there is a resurgence of the word “able-bodied” in contemporary conservative discourses on which American deserves state aid and who doesn’t.

The consensus seems to be that an “able-bodied” citizen should not qualify for state aid like medicaid, for instance. Only the empirically “disabled” should avail of the welfare network of food stamps, subsidized housing and subsidized health.

If state aid is contingent on the state of the body, then does that ground the definition of the poor in a physical rather than an economic criteria?

One wonders.

A Profile of Seduction

According to a NYT book critic, the following is a grand articulation of seduction:

Roxana does not pretend that the virtue whose loss she intermittently laments is something she deeply and sincerely believes in. On the contrary, she was happy to remain in a divided, ambivalent state in which she wants to resist seduction but equally wants her resistance to be swept away. She is well aware of this division or ambivalence within herself…Implicitly she recognizes that she finds being seduced more interesting than giving herself in a direct, unambiguous way; that the prelude to the sexual act can be more desirable, more erotically fulfilling, than the act itself. Seduction, the thought of seduction, the approach of seduction, the imagined experience of seduction, turns out to be profoundly seductive, even irresistible.

These are the expressions of J.M. Coetzee in his recent collection of essay’s “Late Essays.” In these lines, Coetzee intuits the mental universe of one of Daniel Defoe’s most intriguing of heroines.

In a Wordsworthian Mode

The poem speaks to me:

I have been fooled before, and just because

This summer seems so long, it might not be

My last. Winter could come again, and pause

The sky like a taped tactical descent

Of pocket paratroopers. Things to see

Could happen yet, and life prove not quite spent

But still abundant, still the main event.


The trick, I’m learning, is to stay in doubt,

Season to season, of what time may bring,

And patiently await how things turn out.

Eventually time tells you everything.

If it takes time to do so, no surprise

In that. You fold your arms. You scan the skies,

And tell yourself that life has made you wise,


If only by the way it ebbs away.

But still it takes an age, and after all,

Though nearly gone, life didn’t end today,

And you might be here when the first leaves fall

Or even when the snow begins again,

If life that cast you, when this all began,

As a small [boy] still needs a dying man.