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by Peter Cates Henry Beard Poetry for Cats Villard Books, 1994, 87 pages. Poetry for Cats is a clever volume in which Henry Beard (1945-) took 39 well-known poems by as many poets, ranging from Chaucer and Shakespeare to Poe, Whitman and Emily Dickinson, and re-wrote them from the point of view of their cats. […]

REVIEW POTPOURRI: Poet Constance Hunting & Out of print recordings on YouTube

by Peter Cates Poet Constance Hunting Poet Constance Hunting (1925-2006) taught English literature and creative writing at the University of Maine’s Orono campus from 1968 until her death. She originally trained to be a classical pianist but left that to focus on her writing. She also established Puckerbrush Press, edited the Puckerbrush Review, which published […]

REVIEW POTPOURRI: The Best of Tommy Dorsey

by Peter Cates I just began reading a 1980 novel, The Transit of Venus, by the Australian-born Shirley Hazzard (1931-2016) and was struck by the descriptive power of one paragraph evoking the atmosphere of the quiet South England countryside just before a violent lightning storm erupts; anyone like myself with finely tuned nerves to these […]

REVIEW POTPOURRI – Singers: Henry Burr & Alice Nielsen; TV Series: Marcella

by Peter Cates Henry Burr Over Yonder Where the Lilies Grow/Hugh Donovan – The Rose of No Man’s Land; Columbia A2670; ten inch acoustic 78, recorded October, 1918. I have written before about Harry McClaskey (1882-1941), alias Henry Burr, who recorded prolifically 100 and more years ago, while another singer Charles Harrison (1878-1965) alias Hugh […]


by Peter Cates Thomas Hardy The Man He Killed. “Had he and I but met By some old ancient inn, We should have sat us down to wet Right many a nipperkin! “But ranged as infantry, And staring face to face, I shot at him as he at me, And killed him in his place. […]


by Peter Cates George Szell YouTube has made available an hour long September 1968, interview with the great former conductor of the Cleveland Orchestra, George Szell (1897-1970), who raised that Midwestern group of 100 or more players from an already good level to world class during the 24 years of his leadership from 1946 to […]

REVIEW POTPOURRI: English writer H. E. Bates

by Peter Cates English writer H. E. Bates The prolific English writer, H.E. Bates (1905-1974), published his novel The Purple Plain in 1947 and it was made into a 1954 film starring Gregory Peck, of which I have only the vaguest memories when it was shown on one of the Sunday-Afternoon-at-the-Movies programs of Maine’s channel […]