On this day in 1812, British Prime Minister Spencer Perceval was assassinated in the lobby of the House of Commons, the only Prime Minister of this dubious distinction. His assassin was a disgruntled British subject demanding restitution for his recent imprisonment in Siberia.
On this day in 330, Byzantium was named the new capital of the Roman Empire, and styled Nova Roma by Constantine the Great. But everyone just called it Constantinople. Except for the Greeks, who began referring to it simply as, "The City" (tea polis). (It turns out, the Turks renamed it Istanbul as a corruption of 'Tea polis'. But that's nobody's business but the Turks'.)
Baron Munchausen was born, probably on the moon or something.
Salvador Dali was born in Catalonia on this day, in 1904.
Richard Feynman was born in 1918, in Far Rockaway, Queens.
Explorer Robert Gray first sighted the Columbia River on this day in 1792.
A swarthy, strange, foul-smelling monster with an apalling appetite first made his appearance at the Good Samaritan Hospital in NW Portland, a bit overdue, as usual, 24 years ago today. The world has never been the same since.
A poem for today:
I have accepted my longing for you.
It’s comforting to me,
To live with a fading memory of
I might interpret
as a beckoning smile of yours,
the merest shred
of an exchange
that only barely qualifies as a conversation,
words like pennies in the dirt, that’s all.
This is enough
for me to paint your lips
across the canvas of the best hotel sex ever
imagined as a memory relived
in the crush of a pink cadillac’s
crushed velvet seats
Those pennies in the dirt
are the seeds of a garden so lush
that I don’t have to know its fragrance
to remember it
It comforts me
so much that it aches.
Be well, do good work, and keep on the good foot.