This week, as I continued my research for my Chestnut Ridge poems, I made a few discoveries--notably, that Herbert Morrison, the radio announcer who vocally captured the Hindenburg disaster, was from Scottdale, Pennsylvania. If you listen to a snatch of that recording (hit the contents link to reach the Hindenburg segment), you discover how important line breaks were to 1930s radio style, even in the midst of trauma.
I'm so glad to be working on this project again. March, blessedly, is a quiet calendar month--boys in school, no teaching gigs, a fast straightforward editing assignment, and 20th-century poets on the anthology docket. I've already reached Theodore Roethke! Why, I'm practically done! (Well, not really; there's that pesky introduction to write.) But I am getting a chance to wander through the Internet archives, following various Fayette and Westmoreland County leads; and this Hindenburg discovery is a big one. I also discovered that 50s teen idol Fabian married a western Pennsylvania girl--none other than Miss Bituminous Coal herself. Talk about subject matter. . . .
There's so much to write about, and I still have so many holes in my verse-history timeline. I don't know when I'll ever manage to finish it. This could easily be a 10-year project, or worse.