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American History

Watch β€œObama surprises VP, Joe Biden with Presidential Medal of Freedom” on YouTube

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Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our life. If we were to go through our life without any obstacles, we would be crippled. We would not be as strong as what we could have been. Give every opportunity a chance, leave no room for regrets

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American History

~ Objector – William Stafford

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Inline at lunch, I cross my fork and spoon to ward off complicity the ordered life our leaders have offered us.

Thin as a knife, our chance to live depends on such a sign while others talk and The Pentagon from the moon is bouncing exact commands:

β€œForget your faith; be ready for whatever it takes to win: we face annihilation unless all citizens get in line.” I bow and cross my fork and spoon: somewhere other citizens more fearfully bow in a place terrorized by their kind of oppressive state.

Our signs both mean, β€œYou hostages over there will never be slaughtered by my act.” Our vows cross: never to kill and call it fate.

~ Objector – William Stafford

Perhaps a timely thought for American

Peace and goodwill

Amen

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Categories
American History

Letters: Done with Trump | Flag defiled | Radical change | A poor trade | Delay project | Talented pool

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East Bay Times Letters to the Editor for January 10, 2020

Letters: Done with Trump | Flag defiled | Radical change | A poor trade | Delay project | Talented pool
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American History

To the Bartholdi Statue – Ambrose Bierce

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Liberty, God-gifted

Young and immortal maid

In your high hand uplifted, The torch declares your trade.

Its crimson menace, flaming Upon the sea and shore, Is, trumpet-like, proclaiming

That Law shall be no more.

Austere incendiary,

We’re blinking in the light; Where is your customary Grenade of dynamite?

Where are your staves and switches For men of gentle birth?

Your mask and dirk for riches?

Your chains for wit and worth?

Perhaps, you’ve brought the Walters

You used in the old days

When round religion’s altars

You stabled Cromwell’s bays?

Behind you, unsuspected,

Have you the axe, fair wench,

Wherewith you once collected

A poll-tax for the French?

America salutes you-

Preparing to β€˜disgorge.’ Take everything that suits you, And marry Henry George. ~ To the Bartholdi Statue – Ambrose Bierce

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R dress@bestofnatureblog
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Ben H. English

Been H. English ~ Texas

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@bestofnatureblog

β€œOne blade, Dragomirov – warranted never to fail!”
–Richard Sharpe, β€˜Sharpe’s Peril’

A package arrived the other day from Creative Texts Publishers, who not only printed my last two books but have also provided needed advice and encouragement as I stumble my way through this writing gig.

There were other publishers I could have signed a contract with, but I chose Creative Texts. As time goes by that decision has proven repeatedly to be the right one. Upon opening the box, it did so again. Inside was a custom Benchmade folder.

For those who do not know knives, these are some of the best on the market. I have carried one of their automatic folders faithfully since I was a peace officer, and have used it in all sorts of situations. They don’t come any finer.

Flicking the knife open, I was nigh stunned to see my name inscribed on the blade, as well as the ranch brand I had designed for myself while sitting in that one room school house in Terlingua.

Daniel Edwards, owner of Creative Texts, had contacted me prior to this; saying they wanted to send me a little something for Christmas and apologizing for the delay. Believe me, it was well worth the wait.

You can see the knife and inscription in the first photograph, along with some of my other essential β€˜tools of the job’ while prowling through the lower Big Bend. Standing with gift in hand, I knew it was time for a maiden voyage.

The recent heavy snow was still melting last Wednesday morning, even in the Tornillo Basin. The ensuing reflections on the Chisos Mountains gave them a starkly different persona, bluer and more like something one would see in the Rockies in late spring.

Saddling up with pack and gear, I pointed my nose roughly south to those mountains and to what lay in between. Drifting across the bottoms I kept to my usual to and fro sort of course, angling my way to Avery Canyon that snakes along the southeastern edge of the Grapevine Hills.

My first goal was Quail Spring, near the head of a fork that leads due south from the Avery. The spring is well named, as the headwaters sit in a small pocket covered with knee-high grazing grass, near perfect for quail.

There was water, too, which is always a plus with so many dry springs this year. Eyeballing the high ground around me, I noted the trails of antiquity leading off to different points on the compass; trails long abandoned by man but still used by generations upon generations of wildlife. Yes, this was a reliable spring for sure.

From there I set course due west, to where the ruins of Camp Neville lay. Along my route were the last, fading vestiges of a wagon road that ran from the camp itself to Bone Spring. Halfway across I found the forlorn remnants of a wire gap where the road once passed through, rotting wood and rusting barbed wire slowly retreating from the ravages of time.

Camp Neville had been a small, isolated Army outpost in Apache country, and served as a base camp for Black Seminole Indian Scouts such as Isaac Payne and Pompey Factor. The site was reportedly abandoned in 1883, though later used as a stopping point for Army patrols.

There was no groundwater present at Neville Spring. But the leaves of a majestic copse of tall, mature cottonwood trees whispered that water did lay just beneath.

I began the second half of my loop back, following the Neville Spring arroyo to the northeast and on to Avery Canyon, still working my zig-zag course from high ground to high ground. As night gathered around me and the sounds and sights of the day faded away, I eased quietly through the soft desert soil and tall grass along Tornillo Creek.

Day was done and soon enough this maiden voyage for my new personal treasure.

It could not have been a better one…

Ben H. English
Alpine, Texas

USMC: 1976-1983
THP: 1986-2008
Author of β€˜Yonderings’ (TCU Press)
β€˜Destiny’s Way’ (Creative Texts Publishers)
β€˜Out There: Essays on the Lower Big Bend’ (Creative Texts Publishers)
Facebook: Ben H. English
Webpage: benhenglish.com
β€˜Graying but still game’

Museum of the Big Bend
Big Bend Saddlery
Crockett County Public Library
Medina Community Library
The Twig Book Shop
Old Town Books
The Boerne Bookshop
Hill Country Books
Marta Powell Stafford
Lone Star Literary Life
Historic Fort Stockton
Clueless Gent

The lone structure still standing at Camp Neville, once the quarters for the only officer on the post. It was most likely a very young lieutenant, and most likely he was a long way from home. Note the snow on the Chisos in the background…
The bottom end of Quail Spring, one of those hidden wet spots so carefully concealed in a vast dryness of parched desert.
Along the southern part of the Tornillo Basin, where eons of wind, weather and erosion have sculpted fantastic figurines and otherworldly shapes and designs.
Categories
American History

Watch β€œTwitter permanently suspends Trump’s account over risk of inciting β€˜violent acts’ | ABC News” on YouTube

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Categories
Ben H. English

Ben H. English Texas Alpine

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THOUGHT TO THINK ABOUT:

β€œFew of us ever live in the present. We are forever anticipating what is to come or remembering what has gone.”
~ Louis L’Amour

THE STORY BEHIND THE PHOTO:

When this country has a dry year, as it is wont to do, you tend to see the land from a different perspective. Like any living creature bent on survival, the desert adapts to these circumstances by changing its routes, its behaviour and its daily activities.

What is frivolous is ignored or forgotten, what is of little importance is sacrificed and what can be saved and built upon is guarded, even at cost of living, with renewed determination and zealotry. In turn every living thing; every animal, bird, plant or insect, also adapts to these changes.

If it does not, it will die and something more adaptable will take its place. As I have said to others many times before, the lower Big Bend is a place where the ball marked β€˜Darwinism’ is always in play.

But the observant man, the man who sees what is happening in the here and now, uses these deviations in nature to learn more of what is around him. He pays attention to animal tracks, the flight of birds, the buzzing of bees and the sight of anything green that tips the desert’s hand as to where water can be found.

In this, he learns where the most dependable sources are hidden away, be it seep, spring or tinaja. For even these are in a sort of battle with the desert, as well as each other.

Once he finds or rediscovers these spots, another view of the world around becomes readily evident, be it in the past, the present or the future. For where water is found signs of man are found with it, no matter how unlikely the location may be.

Whether ten thousand years ago or only a century past, the remains of those prior lives are present if you know how and where to look.

More so, this epiphany of sorts will also point to where life will be found in the future, no matter how challenging the surrounding environment might be.

For it is the way of the desert, and the way of the desert born…

AUTHOR’S NOTE:

Today I have been accepted as a full member of the Western Writers of America. Founded in 1953, this premier group is made of those who are intricately involved in stories of the west.

Numbering now around 700 individuals, the list runs the gamut of authors of fiction as well as non-fiction work, poets, screenwriters, songwriters and an occasional historian.

For men of a thrill going back to my childhood years.

You see, I can still remember my grandfather resting in the evening after a hard day’s ranch work. He’d be sitting in his old recliner with his feet up, boots off and crumpled black socks showing.

On either side was a large cardboard box, one containing westerns he had read and the other those he hadn’t. In his hands was usually bookmaking the trip from one box to its opposing mate.

He let me scrounge through both of those boxes for my reading material, and I learned that some of the best had some mention of the Western Writers of America.

That or a blurb about being a winner of the WWA’s prestigious Spur award.

And now I am a full member of that same organization.

I would like to think my grandfather would have been a bit thrilled himself…

Merry Christmas to All,

Ben H. English
Alpine, Texas

USMC: 1976-1983
THP: 1986-2008
Author of β€˜Yonderings’ (TCU Press)
β€˜Destiny’s Way’ (Creative Texts Publishers)
β€˜Out There: Essays on the Lower Big Bend’ (Creative Texts Publishers)
Facebook: Ben H. English
Webpage: benhenglish.com
β€˜Graying but still game’
Creative Texts Publishers
Crockett County Public Library
Medina Community Library
The Twig Book Shop
Old Town Books
The Boerne Bookshop
Hill Country Books
Marta Powell Stafford
Lone Star Literary Life
Historic Fort Stockton
Museum of the Big Bend
Clueless Gent

Categories
American History

Joe Biden certified by Congress as next United States president after deadly riot in Capitol – ABC News

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https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-01-07/joe-biden-certified-by-us-congress-as-next-us-president/13039966

Australia News
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Ben H. English

Ben H. English
Alpine, Texas

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THOUGHT TO THINK ABOUT:

β€œFew of us ever live in the present. We are forever anticipating what is to come or remembering what has gone.”
–Louis L’Amour

THE STORY BEHIND THE PHOTO:

When this country has a dry year, as it is wont to do, you tend to see the land from a different perspective. Like any living creature bent on survival, the desert adapts to these circumstances by changing its routes, its behavior and its daily activities.

What is frivolous is ignored or forgotten, what is of little importance is sacrificed and what can be saved and built upon is guarded, even at cost of life, with renewed determination and zealotry. In turn every living thing; every animal, bird, plant or insect, also adapts to these changes.

If it does not, it will die and something more adaptable will take its place. As I have said to others many times before, the lower Big Bend is a place where the ball marked β€˜Darwinism’ is always in play.

But the observant man, the man who sees what is happening in the here and now, uses these deviations in nature to learn more of what is around him. He pays attention to animal tracks, the flight of birds, the buzzing of bees and the sight of anything green that tips the desert’s hand as to where water can be found.

In this he learns where the most dependable sources are hidden away, be it seep, spring or tinaja. For even these are in a sort of battle with the desert, as well as each other.

Once he finds or rediscover these spots, another view of the world around becomes readily evident, be it in the past, the present or the future. For where water is always found signs of man are found with it, no matter how unlikely the location may be.

Whether ten thousand years ago or only a century past, the remains of those prior lives are present, if you know how and where to look.

More so, this epiphany of sorts will also point to where life will be found in the future, no matter how challenging the surrounding environment might be.

For it is the way of the desert, and the way of the desert born…

AUTHOR’S NOTE:

Today I have been accepted as a full member of the Western Writers of America. Founded in 1953, this premier group is made of those who are intricately involved in stories of the west.

Numbering now around 700 individuals, the list runs the gamut of authors of fiction as well as non-fiction work, poets, screenwriters, song writers and an occasional historian.

For me personally, it is a bit of a thrill going back to my childhood years.

You see, I can still remember my grandfather resting in the evening after a hard day’s ranch work. He’d be sitting in his old recliner with his feet up, boots off and crumpled black socks showing.

On either side was a large cardboard box, one containing westerns he had read and the other those he hadn’t. In his hands was usually a bookmaking the trip from one box to its opposing mate.

However, he let me scrounge through both of those boxes for my reading material, and I learned that some of the best had some mention of the Western Writers of America.

That or a blurb about being a winner of the WWA’s prestigious Spur award.

And now I am a full member of that same organization.

I would like to think my grandfather would have been a bit thrilled himself…

Merry Christmas to All,

Ben H. English
Alpine, Texas

USMC: 1976-1983
THP: 1986-2008
Author of β€˜Yonderings’ (TCU Press)
β€˜Destiny’s Way’ (Creative Texts Publishers)
β€˜Out There: Essays on the Lower Big Bend’ (Creative Texts Publishers)
Facebook: Ben H. English
Webpage: benhenglish.com
β€˜Graying but still game’
Creative Texts Publishers
Crockett County Public Library
Medina Community Library
The Twig Book Shop
Old Town Books
The Boerne Bookshop
Hill Country Books
Marta Powell Stafford
Lone Star Literary Life
Historic Fort Stockton
Museum of the Big Bend
Clueless Gent

Categories
American History

Washington National Cathedral Tolls Funeral Bell 300 Times in Memory of 300,000 Coronavirus Victims

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A U.S. Navy band arrives for the Funeral of Senator John McCain (R-AZ) at National Cathedral in Washington, U.S., September 1, 2018. Joshua Roberts/Reuters The Washington National Cathedral honored the memory of theΒ 300,000 Americans who have died of coronavirusΒ by tolling its mourning bell 300 times on Tuesday β€” once for every 1,000 dead. It took […]

Washington National Cathedral Tolls Funeral Bell 300 Times in Memory of 300,000 Coronavirus Victims

Shalom

@acenewsservices

@bestofnatureblog

Categories
American History

American Native Indian Predicts America’s Future

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Yeah, what a big bag of wind Trump is. And Biden is the sorriest most useless puppet of the corporate enemy this country has ever produced. This country is going to regret ever having elected him. We are going to see our taxes go spiralling upwards and the prices of food rent and utilities go […]

American Native Indian Predicts America’s Future