The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

Friends and Family #38

Original Caption:

Gross Goes Free

New York -- His face wreathed in a broad smile, Harry Gross walks forth a free man today after serving four years as the mastermind of Brooklyn's $20,000,000 gambling empire. In tears, the one time bookie kingpin promised Kings County Judge Samuel Liebowitz to "live a clean and decent life." He is shown with attorney Michael Kern at federal court to plead for time to pay off a $2,500 income tax fine. He said he was broke. (1955)

1 comment :

ArnoldtheAuk said...

Tom, Thanks for the amazing photo! I just found the half with Mike Kern -- my grandfather -- in my mother's papers. (The photo was hidden in a frame behind another one throughout my childhood. Defending gambling kingpins was not looked upon that favorably in my home.) I always wondered what Harry Gross looked like. Now I know.