Author Joseph Heywood
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Friday Morning Thoughts: Removed.

Air here is clean (not counting pine pollens, or random bird feces floating earthward), few motor
vehicles, no traffic lights or jams, (other than occasional houndsmen tracking their dogs running
and singing a swamp bear), No sirens, no low-flying aircraft or mindless teenagers shaking the
house with Rapscallion Thunder from their mobile sounds systems (heavy on the bass, not like
heavy as in serious, but as in really , terribly loud and onerous), No Mormons or Jehovian
Witnesses knuckling our doors, only the occasional temporarily disoriented traveler who has
done no planning and driven Up North to the UP like it was an amusement park, think of it as
Yooperland, acrosst Da Britch, probably not an angle Pure Michigan will play, but ought to
consider. No news junkies either, except that a neighbor got a pinched nerve in his back
yesterday, and then I hear Linda Ronstedt’s Parksinsons has taken her voice; and, two black kids
beat a WW Deux hero to death, taking the 90 year-old’s voice too, though assailants being black
is in the story lead and Hed has no news logic, only racist spume, and makes no sense by
standards I was taught long ago, and now feel at such a long remove from. No TV, no radio, and
we don’t check news on the internet, though Facebook friends sometimes touch on news pseudo
and real. We read only the Newberry News, a weekly, almost exclusively local in content, this
week a story of a plaque dedicated to Ernie Hem at the Fox River Campground north of Seney
though it’s not known where he fished; and a flashback to 1888, “A fight between the dogs of
Robert Whistle, Newberry, and Alex Murphy, Dollarvlle, attracted a large crowd Monday.
Whistle’s Dog got the best of the fight.” Whistle’s Dog, great title for a fiction piece, this is how
I think In my state of removal, (another great title for a memoir, State of Removal) 300 yards
from Lake Superior’s shore. It’s not at all clear if the dog fight was serendipitous or formal
blood sport, or why Whistle’s names listed first when alphabetically it’s second, perhaps the
editor had a wager on the outcome? Or was partial to Noobysites over Dollarvillians? There was
once a national policy called removal, which took Indians off their traditional lands and put them
elsewhere, always a worse place on all counts, this the extension of Manifest Destiny, a policy
whereby all white Americans were “destined” to have all land of people of other colors, or
cultures; and two black kids kill an elderly war hero? Have we changed at all, since 1776? But
then I think, white folks will soon not be in majority, and perforce reverse Manifest Destiny will
arise like reverse mortgages have popped up? Ah Friday morning thoughts. Good to clear the
mind for real work. One chapter done at 0500, time to tackle another.

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