Friday, June 5, 2015

Raintree County Revisited




"The world is still full of divinity and strangeness"
-John Shawnessy 


Golden French Lilacs





        "Come back to Raintree County,
 wandering child.
 Remember the great deaths
 and the great homecomings.
 Come back, and bring a sprig of lilac.
 For you will always be on trains
 and coming home,
 and the legend that recalled you
 from the City 
 will always be tingling
 along the wires of the Republic."
Excerpt from the novel,
"Raintree County"
By Ross Lockridge Jr.




"So kiss me sweet with your warm wet mouth,
Still fragrant with ruby wine,
And say with a fervor born of the South
That your body and soul are mine.
Clasp me close in your warm young arms,
While the pale stars shine above,
And we'll live our whole young lives away
In the joys of a living love."
-Ella Wheeler Wilcox

                       
Montgomery Cliff romances Elizabeth Taylor in
"Raintree County"
(1957)





Set amid the backdrop of
the American Civil War,
"Raintree County" 
is the story of the
tumultuous and
 tragic romance
 between a
handsome, poetic dreamer
 John Shawnessy,
and a beautiful, yet
tormented, southern belle
 Suzanna Drake


Magnolia Susan






"He may be six kinds of a liar,
He may be ten kinds of a fool,
He may be a wicked high flyer
Beyond any reason or rule;
There may be a shadow above him
Of ruin and woes to impend
And I may not respect, but I love him,
Because-well, because he's my friend."
-Berton Braley




Eva Marie Saint
"Raintree County"
(1957)





John Shawnessy's
tender-hearted
high school sweetheart,
the beautiful and virtuous
Nell Gaither,
is heartbroken over
John's betrayal of her
with Suzanna, but
she still loves him.



Sweet Nellie Azalea







"But who shall break the guards that wait
Before the awful face of Fate?
The tattered standards of the South
Were shriveled at the canon's mouth,
And all her hopes were desolate."
-Will Henry Thompson




Eva Marie Saint, Montgomery Cliff
and Elizabeth Taylor visit the
Windsor Ruins
during the filming of
"Raintree County"




This haunting tale of
passion and betrayal,
 the horror of war, and the
physical and psychological
aftermath, in the wake of 
19th century
America's greatest
national conflict,  
was filmed on location
at the ruins of
the Windsor estate,
an antebellum 
Greek Revival mansion
 and the largest
plantation house
ever built in
the state of
Mississippi.




"Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendor in the grass, 

of glory in the flower;
We will grieve not, rather find
Strength in what remains behind."

-William Wordsworth

 
The Windsor mansion survived the war
only to be destroyed by fire in 1890.






The Raintree's
"Blossoms of Gold"





Raintree County...
which had no boundaries in time
and space, where lurked musical and
strange names and mythical and lost
peoples, and which was itself only a
name musical and strange."
-Ross Lockridge Jr.
  




"The Song of Raintree County"
Sung by Nat King Cole






"I'd love you in Raintree County,
 and I'd find what we all seek to know.
We shared the golden dream
 when we found our true love
in Raintree long ago,
 for the brave who dare 
there's a Raintree
 ev'rywhere.
We who dreamed
 found it so, long ago." 
"The Song of Raintree County"
Lyrics By
  Paul Francis Webster 
John Waldo Green


Beautiful promotional art for"Raintree County"



 
 



June Prayers, Poems, & Praise







"Free Spirit"
Lee Bogle



"Give away the things you don't need
Let it all go and you'll soon see
And you'll wash your spirit clean
Wash your spirit clean
Go and pray upon a mountain
Go and pray beside the ocean
And you'll wash your spirit clean
Wash Your spirit clean
Be grateful for the struggle
Be thankful for the lessons
And you'll wash your spirit clean."
"Wash Your Spirit Clean"
Tim Veazey, Jon Timothy Veazey




"Wash Your Spirit Clean"
Walela





"Give me good digestion, Lord,
and also something to digest;
Give me a healthy body, Lord,
and a sense to keep it at its best.
Give me a healthy mind, good Lord,
to keep the good and pure in sight;
Which, seeing sin, is not appalled,
but finds a way to set it right.




Summer Berries

  Give me a mind that is not bound,
that does not whimper,
whine or sigh.

Don't let me worry over much
about the fussy thing called I.
Give me a sense of humor, Lord;
give me the grace to see a joke,
To get some happiness from life
and pass it on to other folk."
"An Ancient Prayer"
Thomas H.B. Webb







"Water Lilies"
Claude Monet
(1922)









"The summer morn is bright and fresh,
the birds are darting by
As if they loved to breast the breeze
that sweeps the cool clear sky."

  -William C. Bryant 




Acadia National Park
Maine






 "Lean on, trust in,
and be confident in
the Lord
with all your heart
and mind
and do not rely
on your own insight
or understanding.
In all your ways,
recognize and 
acknowledge Him
and He will direct
and make straight and plain
your paths."
Proverbs 3:5-6 






Sing to the Lord a joyful song,
Lift up your hearts, your voices raise;
To us His gracious gifts belong,
To Him our songs of love and praise.

For life and love, for rest and food,
For daily help and nightly care,
Sing to the Lord, for He is good,
And praise His Name, for it is fair.

For strength to those who on Him wait,
His truth to prove, His will to do,
Praise ye our God, for He is great,
Trust in His Name, for it is true.

For joys untold, that from above
Cheer those who love His sweet employ,
Sing to our God, for He is love,
Exalt His Name, for it is joy.

For He is Lord of Heav’n and earth,
Whom angels serve and saints adore,
The Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,
To Whom be praise forevermore.
"Sing To The Lord A Joyful Song"
- John S. B. Monsell
Hymns of Love and Praise
(1863)


 Great Smoky Mountains
National Park
North Carolina









Over the shoulders and slopes of the dune
I saw the white daisies go down to the sea,
A host in the sunshine, an army in June,
The people God sends us to set our hearts free.

The bobolinks rallied them up from the dell,
The orioles whistled them out of the wood;
And all of their singing was,

 "Earth, it is well!"
And all of their dancing was,

 "Life, thou art good!"
"Daisies"
Bliss Carman


Pretty daises by the sea 
in Newfoundland








Summer Moonrise


Monday, June 1, 2015

June: Sand & Star Dust




"I wonder what it would be like
 to live in a world where it was always June."
-  L. M. Montgomery





June Roses In Bloom








"Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy
Sunshine in my eyes can make me cry
Sunshine on the water looks so lovely
Sunshine almost always makes me high..."

-John Denver





Robert Hagan
1947





If you have built castles in the air,
 your work need not be lost;
 that is where they should be.
 Now put the foundations under them.
Henry David Thoreau





Boy with Sandcastle
By Shawn Mcloughlin






  “No, no! 
The adventures first,
 explanations take
 such a dreadful time.” 
Lewis Carroll




Walking trail through the Pine Barrens










"For here you are
And what was just a world is a star
Tonight!"

"Tonight"
from the musical
 "West Side Story"
Bernstein/Sondheim





Starry Summer Night Sky