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

An Illustrated History of American Labor #10


Original Caption:

New York -- A striker points out something of interest to Rev. John M. Corridan, S.J., Associate Director of the Xavier School and adviser to dock strikers. The Rev. Corridan, a recognized expert in labor, said the Wildcat Dock Strike is largely a revolt against Joseph P. Ryan and the racketeers and mobsters along the waterfront. The Rev. also predicted that even if strikers return to work "an explosion is brewing on the waterfront which will make this strike seem like a picnic." (1951)

3 comments :

Robert Daeley said...

Hey, that's the guy that inspired Karl Malden's priest character in On the Waterfront.

pinstripebindi said...

Oh right, I always forget Catholics used to be (mostly) liberals.

Tommy O'C said...

The Malcolm Johnson articles that the movie was based on took place on the Manhattan waterfront, although the movie was filmed in Hoboken. Budd Schulberg said that Corridan was quite a guy. A real drinker, cursed like a longshoreman. He said it took him 15 years to be ordained a priest (for reasons we can only speculate on). Those were the days!