Poems by Eric Scott Sutherland
Images by Brian Connors Manke
These poems and images appeared with Tony Stilt’s essay, “The Lexington Central Public Library is a home.” All poems will appear in Eric’s forthcoming Accents publication, pendulum.
not in the job description
Librarians are almost always very helpful
and often almost absurdly knowledgeable.
and largely underemployed.
You went to school
to study library science,
to become an ambassador
for letters and literacy.
You love books
and want to help
You never expected
you’d be directing
people to the bathroom
and telling them
not to fall asleep.
have and have-not
In the dim rotunda
two people sit,
inanimate as mannequins.
three piece uniform.
The other wears a rainbow
of second-hand mismatches.
They watch a pendulum
swing beneath the eye of the sky,
marking the miserable
seconds of the day,
the tick tocks of rat claws
as they race.
In one’s wide dark
pupils, the dream is unattainable.
And in the others the myth is
exposed, hope already lost.
fishing for change
lost skipper, Phoenix Park, far from sea
hair grayish green like rocky coast
a body of wire wrapped in a ragged coat
shredded to stuffing and thread
an unlit cigarette hangs between thin lips
a ship tossed in the storm of his beard
every morning voyage passes the pay phone
he casts his finger into the coin return slot
but I have never seen him get lucky
never seen him catch a dime
loves oatmeal cookies
and peanut butter shakes,
dresses in cutoff sweats
over full length
sweats, looks like he flew
out of the cuckoo’s nest,
and two umbrellas
Milkshake Ricky is losing
more than his mind. The way
he fumbles through
layers of worn cotton
searching for his billfold
he may have also
lost what little
money there is left
from his monthly check.
Youth talent show April 19 at Embrace Church
By Taylor Riley
1, 2, 3… Jump!
I walk past a group of enthusiastic jump-roping children as I search for John and Laura Gallaher.
There are at least 20 kids outside North Limestone’s Embrace United Methodist Church around four p.m. this particular Friday. If I didn’t know any better, I would think these kids were at recess.
School is over for the day, though, and the kids are involved in an after-school program.
I walk inside the church and spot John and Laura rounding up a couple kids for snack time in the basement home of Common Good, the north Lexington non-profit the Gallahers opened last year.
By Danny Mayer
In early March, members of Lexington’s city council voted unanimously to pass a resolution in support of the restoration of voting rights to felons who had served their time in prison. The resolution was largely symbolic—the legal authority to re-enfranchise former felons lies in the hands of state lawmakers, not city council members. The resolution’s main purpose was to offer a demonstration of unified local political support for HB 70, a state bill sponsored by Fayette County congressman Jesse Crenshaw. His bill would allow Kentucky citizens to vote on a constitutional amendment that will automatically restore voting rights to most Kentucky felons who have completed the terms of their sentence (as happens in most other states).
In addition to the show of support, the council’s vote also sent another message to Frankfort politicians: let democracy happen. For the past seven years, the Kentucky House of Representatives has voted on and overwhelmingly passed HB 70, only to see it killed by Republicans Damon Thayer (Georgetown) and Joe Bowen (Owensboro) in the Senate’s Committee on State and Local Government. Consequently, despite the bill garnering increasingly bipartisan support among both state politicians and the general public, HB 70 has yet to leave its assigned Senate subcommittee.
On the Town Branch, part 2
By Danny Mayer
I first heard about the Town Branch in a geography class at the University of Kentucky, early in 2001. We didn’t talk much about the creek itself. It was the thing that oriented us differently on the maps: our skeletal framework, a northwesterly axis, something railroad ties covered.
It would be another six years before Town Branch appeared to me in all its cavernous damp wonder. While visiting a farm in Keene, Kentucky, I happened upon an urban caver and all-around fire-master—a man who introduced himself as “Thom-with-an-H,” the last three syllables rolling away from the lazy ‘m’ like the sharp uncoiling of a lasso (tom,with-in-atche). Over a long fire that spanned several days, Thom-with-an-H recounted to me stories of cave trips taken beneath the greater Lexington substrata. Several of these stories began or ended nearby the Town Branch Creek; a few involved walking up-creek from the edge of the Rupp Arena parking lot, into the culvert, and underneath downtown.
During that summer of 2007, I sat for hours and listened to Thom-with-an-H talk, marveling all the while at the holes his caves were poking into my Lexington maps. It was quite heady stuff to imagine one descending underground at Cardinal Valley and emerging in Southland, or disappearing into the west end of Rupp only to re-appear one block east of the East End.
Bluegrass Community and Technical College is happy to have Dr. Yana Hashamova of Ohio State University speak on human trafficking, film and media.
According to most recent research, media environment influences the viewer’s emotions, attitudes, and behavior; establishes opinions on given social issues; and shapes young people’s perception of reality to a considerable degree. Various media venues are the main source of information about trafficking in people. This presentation examines cross-cultural and transnational media products on trafficking as well as attitudes toward trafficking, utilizing U.S. and Balkan media and social attitudes case studies.
The talk will take place Thursday, April 25, from 6:30-7:45 pm in the Oswald Auditorium.
By Cameron Lindsey
Netflix is singlehandedly changing the way Americans watch television, and I am talking about something more than making us stay awake for days watching seasons of The X-files.
Back in early 2012, a little eight-episode show called Lilyhammer aired on our trusty video subscription service, where it received little attention. The show originally aired in Norway and stars one of Bruce Springsteen’s guitarists, Steven Van Zandt, who you might remember from back in the day on The Sopranos. The show centers around Van Zandt’s character, a former mafia boss, who relocates to Norway as part of a witness protection program. Sounds okay, right? You can still watch every episode of the show on Netflix, so check it out if you like.
But more importantly, remember the name Lilyhammer. That way, when you get a trivia question in 2025 that asks, “What was Netflix’s first original show before they changed television forever?” you can jump up and say, “I know this one.”