11th & 12th September, 2006
Edward Habib McKuen. ©2006 by Stanyan Audio Video Archives
A Thought for Today
Life in the company of cats is always
sunnier and easier.
TO BEGIN WITH
Anniversaries are reminders, and this one of the terrible events of
September 11, 2001 is as somber and heartbreaking as any in Americas
history as a nation. There has been no shortage of poems, songs and
tributes to the lives lost that day. I have been motivated enough in the
eighteen hundred plus days since 9/11/01 but unable to write much of
anything. The words just didn’t come.
The other day I finally set down the few words that make up today’s
poem. First the mail.
MEMBERS OF THE FAMILY
Monday will make it two months since my precious
little Taz died. He was the my outlet and salvation when dark moods came
I know this will all pass but tonight it weighs heavy on me. I work, do
my volunteer work, garden, search high and low for a new puppy Yet the
void just doesn't lessen. What the hell does it take to overcome the
losses? Is there something I don't know about that helps a person move
My sweet little boy passed away in my arms today
at 12:30PM. He had been ill all summer long.
Junior was born on September 9, 1994 in Alpha, NJ to my mommy kitty
Speckles. We named him Franklin Junior after another cat we had at the
time that was also a black and white with the mask. When Franklin passed
away Junior was curled up with him in a chair in the TV room in Alpha.
I sang to Junior just before he passed on. I sang the Rod McKuen song
Every Loner Has To Go Alone ..."Animals and Angels are the same..." He
seemed to be at peace and just took one last breath. I am very sad as he
was my most favorite of pets.
He had this way of looking at me that made me feel truly loved. He would
follow me all around the house, and it is going to be a great adjustment
to not see him tagging along.
We buried him in my daughter Jamiann's garden and put a garden stone on
his grave. The stone reads "God Bless This Garden" ...well... He
certainly blessed our home with our dear little Junior. Love, Diane
Dear Ann & Diane, I share your feelings and more than just a little bit.
In July we lost Dinah, our beautiful, neurotic, shy and sweet Himalayan
and the last female member of the menagerie I belong too.
She is buried on Boot Hill, the upper garden named after its first
resident a loveable Old English Sheepdog named Old Boot. It’s also the
permanent residence of Mr. Kelly, Arthur, Kelly Jr., Magic, Bingo, Nick
E. and KubbyKat 1 among too many others. They rest amid Day Lilies and
Daisies near a Bay Tree that has grown out of hand and a field of much
Despite the fact that Dinah had been ill for some time and it was a
blessing for her to finally go, her death was difficult for me. Usually
Edward and I share everything together but he was on a trip and so there
wasn’t anyone to commiserate with.
We have this unwritten rule that if anything bad or unfortunate happens
while one of us away we don’t bring it up until we are face to face
again. Why ruin someone’s trip or vacation when there is nothing to be
done from a distance?
No, it doesn’t get any easier for a while but we are supposed to grieve
over and remember those who helped make our lives better for whatever
brief time they were here.
On a happier note our friend and member of the Stanyan staff has his
first kitten. A beautiful calico runt, and I do mean runt – she is still
being fed with an eye dropper – that was rescued from a dumpster. Ben
named his American Shorthair Taco and it was love at first sight and,
not incidentally, the cause of some jealousy by the other female in his
life. At last report all three were settled in and doing well.
Again Diane and Ann I share the pain of your loss. My love and warm
thoughts to both of you, Rod
PETULA & THE LONG HOT SUMMER
Hi Rod, It was so good to have you back with us
(on the Flight Plan) this morning. The summer has been rather drab
without you words of wisdom at intervals through the week. I hope you
have had a great time, although I know you have been busy working, but
I'm sure you had some time off. How did the recordings with Petula go?
Will we see the fruits of your labours soon? I read somewhere that you
may do some concerts with here, so is that a possibility?
Finally, how about some new pictures?
Life here in the UK has been very hot weather wise, during July and
August, but that’s nothing to you in CA, but now we are back to our
changeable days which is great as far as I'm concerned, cos' I love the
changing climate, with sunshine and showers! Now it's time for the kids
to go back to school and college, at last, thank goodness! I can get
some of my life back now, instead of being taxi driver, organizer,
laundry women and problem solver etc! etc! Take care and lots of luv and
a big hug, Gloria xxx
Dear Gloria, No time off to speak of and when I have more than a few
minutes to spare I do intend to write at some length as to how I spent
my summer vacation. For now, let’s just say it was productive.
The Petula Project is complete and wonderful. She does things with my
songs that no other vocalist has even attempted. I’ll be in the studio
next week mastering the album which it titled “Petula Clark: Solitude &
Sunshine, The Songs of Rod McKuen”. I’m too superstitious to announce
any projected release date for the album but by way of a prevue a track
or two from the sessions will be offered as free downloads on the
website and on
www.stanyanhouse.com in the near future.
As for concerts? They are being looked into. I love singing with Petula
(we even do a couple of duets on the disc) so if appearances together
work out we will both be happy. For the next couple of months, you can
catch her in Branson with Andy Williams.
Petula is in great voice and I’m as excited about this album as I was
about Sinatra’s “A Man Alone.” As for new pictures, Edward has promised
to take some. With Affection, Rod
Dear Rod, You once told me to continue writing,
and I did. A song I wrote is being recorded on an album as we speak. The
Gaithers have a cousin who does Christian music and my tax man has two
jobs ---taxes and writes music and he showed me the list of songs he had
on order and there was one for an 8 year old girl and I told him I
thought I could do that one for him and I did and he edited it a bit and
both our names went on the demo and they are recording it and I'm so
happy. How about that? Love You --Dolores
Dear Dolores, CONGRATULATIONS & luv. Rod
ONCE AGAIN SPEAKING OF ANIMALS
In a multiple adressed letter a friend writes:
Okay, everyone. I'm sending this across the nation
in hopes of finding a miniature poodle puppy. I'd like to find a male,
any color other than black, blue or brown. Parti-colored of any color
combination would be wonderful but so would phantom or solid. I would
prefer AKC but would consider CKC. Companionship quality. Health
certificate necessary. If anyone hears of a mini looking for a good
home, I'd appreciate hearing from you.
Enough with designer dogs. Please consider rescuing a puppy or better
still an older ‘mutt’ nobody else wants from your local pound. Cheers,
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