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AC Benus

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About AC Benus

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    San Francisco
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    Love, cooking, history, classical writings, Queer politics, chatting with friends, finding more in common with everyone than I thought possible, architecture, design, dogs, Airedales

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  1. AC Benus

    Orlando Snapshots

    These were great fun to write -- except the elbows to the gut, lol. Thanks for reading and commenting. I really appreciate it
  2. AC Benus

    Orlando Snapshots

    Writing these -- sketching them, really -- was a great relief from working on Hell in a Handbasket. Thanks for reading and commenting. I appreciate it
  3. . Orlando Snapshots – Life with a puppy from ages nine-weeks to seven-months can remind a person what’s important. Here are some Haiku-Stanzas to record them. I. See the world again Through those dreamy puppy eyes With fearless caution. II. Is it faith we see When their gaze turns on to us, In showers of trust? III. Higher to lower; Dogs are most magnanimous Forgiving our sins. IV. I stand with coffee The morning of the first day, Him curled on my feet. V. Awakening’s warmth: For me, the rill of caffeine; For him, it’s the rest. VI. Masetto at ten Says: “Don’t touch my feet!” “Don’t climb My back.” “Don’t look so sweet….” VII. Oh, to discover The nature of a little ball Is to bounce and fly! VIII. Every morning still The screech of the city hawks Frights his country soul. IX. In the dark of night, Going out to do business, All bluster is gone. X. Like swatting a fly, Masetto flicks the play-charge With the side of his head. XI. Silent as the sphinx, Orlando sits and watches, Learning how we tick. XII. Like the great scholars, The puppy sits and observes, Withholding comments. XIII. Last night’s shadows scare Pup’s bedtime garden foray, Not knowing they’re his. XIV. Life with a puppy: Say “Goodbye” to clean flooring, And “Hello, sunshine.” XV. A puppy’s mindset: Ninety percent caprice, and… Ten percent cunning. XVI. No personal space: Orlando knows no boundaries When he cuddles down. XVII. Never gave much thought To life with a Pisces dog… Yet, we’re so alike. XVIII. Like a bag of bones, Puppy throws himself against The exhausted floor. XIX. Hope is one word – DOG – For boundless optimism And limitless love. XX. When Orlando plays, His moans beckon Masetto To be young again. XXI. Dogs can absolve us; Free of the Wheel of Dharma, They forgive us, us. XXII. With a sa-shay tail And the flip-floppiest ears, All of puppy smiles. XXIII. Orlando grows big And puppy traits leave his frame, But not from his eyes. XXIV. When he looks at me, The ridge of dirt on his nose Says “I’ve been playing!” XXV. Puppy climbs on bed Just to check we’ve survived The night’s long dullness. XXVI. Lando’s “Good Morning!” Is full of French kisses and Elbows to the gut. XXVII. A proud life-moment: Puppy discovers stuffed toys Are full of stuffing. XXVIII. His first nail-trimming: Ordeal; screaming; resistance – But, I won’t give up. XXIX. Such is life, he hears Me telling his trembling frame, But all things are fair. XXX. His impossible Puppy hair’s soft as floating Dandelion fluff. XXXI. The faux hawk I work Atop his sweet, trusting head, Reminds me deeply. XXXII. His dear forefather Leporello I would call "My Punky Brewster." XXXIII. I'd forgotten why, Until looking at this pup Joined past with present. XXXIV. Generations go, But things do not really change Where love is concerned. XXXV. Second nail-trimming: He stands and pants mildly; "Is that all it is?" XXXVI. Textured like shagreen, His nose is not satiny, But rough as mohair. XXXVII. When he comes to kiss Even in the dark of night, I know him by his touch. XXXVIII. Like the Greek concept When a boy comes to market, Pup's beard shadows forth. XXXIX. Moorish poetry Has an entire genre Praising boys' first fuzz. XL. As his form stretches, As growth takes over his mind, Dog replaces pup. XLI. My Orlando's chin Grows more mature by the day; Soon he'll be a 'man'. XLII. One day soon, I'll look and find my child replaced by full-fledged worthiness. XLIII. Inheritance comes And nobility assumes He's one of their own. XLIV. Noble Airedale, Your proud chin proclaims to all My puppyhood's done. XLV. Magnanimous, Rule over us lesser hearts, Righteous Orlando. XLVI. Sad to think it’s done, But glad to see him mature, Words feel undone. XLVII. I look at his face, Knowing his future’s sublime, And grin, satisfied. XLVIII. Orlando’s Morning Stretches full ahead of him: This day’s a lifetime. ~ _
  4. @Reader1810 I uploaded the "Summer" image from the 1922 Famous-Barr mailers. I'm still looking for spring and winter


    1. Show previous comments  1 more
    2. Reader1810



      I know this is not what you’re looking for, but I found this 1800s trading card in my search, and I like it. :D 

    3. Lyssa


      Beautiful! :D :-D :D

    4. Parker Owens

      Parker Owens

      That’s magnificent. 

  5. AC Benus


    I think you explore the potential of the form really well. You expand it to tell a narrative, yet maintain the integrity of each stanza skyscraper to be a fully contained combo of image and emotion. Really well done!
  6. Happy Autumn from Famous-Barr!

    (This is part of their 1922 quarterly mailer; I now have two of the four :)



    1. Reader1810


      The wow emoji is for where my thoughts led me: 

      Sandro Botticelli’s Birth of Venus

      Perhaps, it’s her swirling hair that has me seeing the other image? 🤔

      Regardless, it’s quite compelling to look at. 

      I like it. :thumbup:


    2. Parker Owens

      Parker Owens

      Awesome! It definitely brings its era to life. 

    3. dughlas


      Now if just there was a story to accompany the image ... I know, I know, not asking for much.

  7. Not only was Blind Boy Fuller one of the greatest blues guitarists of all time -- in the recording, in addition to the treble and bass music, all the percussion sounds you hear are made my Fuller striking the body of his guitar -- but in 1940 he laid down the first 100% Rock and Roll song. Enjoy Step It Up and Go.


    1. Zombie


      Why is this guy just a footnote in music history?

      He’s not even mentioned on the utterly commercial give-us-yer-money “Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame” website, yet they happily list the likes of Mick Jagger who (along with every other rock and roll star) has this guy and others to thank for a whole lifetime career - which, to be fair, Jagger has freely acknowledged. Yet the so-called RARHOF just ignores Fuller. Shame on them.


    2. AC Benus

      AC Benus

      @Zombie ...well, you think race has anything to do with it...? For a long time even Chuck Berry was shunned in favor of Rock "pioneers" like Elvis and Jerry Lee Lewis. 

      As for Fuller's recordings, they are all very interesting. If there is such a thing as Randy Newman fans out there anymore (hehehe...), then they'd be surprised to learn his style is a total ripoff of Blind Boy Fuller. This song will show that :)


      "What's that smell like fish (mamma)?" 1938


    3. Zombie


      @AC Benus “you think race has anything to do with it...?

      Not in the UK - the “Northern Soul” movement that began in the 60s was always a celebration of black US music and is just one (significant) example. It was a badge of honour to discover the most obscure black musicians no-one else knew about, eschewing the likes of “white” friendly Motown. Another example would, of course, be the BBC - so for the likes of John Peel on his radio show the more obscure the better! :) 
      For “ordinary Jo” folks it’s simply a matter of ignorance, especially in the current world of pop “celebrity” :(  




  8. 1972 Pride Poster :)


    1. Parker Owens

      Parker Owens

      Way better than Alka Seltzer’s ad with the same slogan...

  9. That's a really nice performance. That young man has tremendous talent and control.
  10. The boy's falsetto is amazingly artistic and controlled. I believe the Russian tradition of basso profundo is basic to their (Byzantium-inherited) cultural grounding of what singing is. If you haven't heard Dmitry Seleznev perform, this will be a pleasant experience (and he's easy on the eyes too )
  11. I've known this vid for a while, but did not know this is part of a modern composition (set to Pushkin no less! ). Thanks for that info. Pushkin is famous for his one Gay piece of verse, which is suppressed in English, and barely known (so I am told) in Russian. Here is it: Imitation of the Arabic [Verse Style] My sweet boy, my tender boy, Show no shyness; you are mine for evermore. We share the commingled fire of insurgency; We live in the realm of fearless partnership. I fear not the dangerous taunts of other men, For one being divided in two is how we survive; Our brain like that of a sweet walnut Encased by a single sturdy shell. Alexandre Pushkin, 1835 _
  12. Your friendship Sonnet is very touching
  13. Franco Mezzena and Symphonia Perusina perform the 3rd movement from Viotti's violin concerto No. 28 in a-minor

    17:20 III. Allegretto vivo

  14. Thanks for your comment and support, dear friend
  15. . the sideshows burn circles in the pavement; the ash hangs relentlessly in the air we breathe; a nation holds its breath, waiting to see if democracy dies on our watch; and today was funeral day for a dear, dear friend who will never -- not in a million lifetimes -- be replaced. October 1st, 2020, 10:14 pm _
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