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

Norman Rockwell Saved from Drowning #11


The Homecoming Marine (1945)

7 comments :

Marshall-Stacks said...

The Homecoming ... Holly Hunter's character in Broadcast News was inspired to illustrate an item with a painting of that title (and this simple and obvious correlation was supposedly enough to win the character a Pulitzer fer chrissakes)
but I'm sure the painting shown in the film was outdoors and involved steps to a verandah ...

anyhow we love Norman.

Ann oDyne said...

the Rockwell featured in Broadcast News was "Hasten The Homecoming" and an encouragement to buy War Bonds.

NR was really tall! and because I have to research many of those on this blog I now know he is buried in Stockbridge where the NR Museum is.
Thanks TS

infinite fool said...

http://infinitefool.blogspot.com/2009/08/honest-scrap.html

estiv said...

Wow. I just noticed the Japanese flag in his hands and the newspaper on the wall. He may never get a great reputation, but what a craftsman.

Gerard Saylor said...

A neat tableau. The Marine was likely a hanger-on at the garage when a kid. He would enjoy the company and comradery of the men while exploring an enthusiasm for cars. Now he returns and is in the unfamiliar position of having the men focus all attention on him and hear him talk.

Brent McKee said...

Noticed the juxtaposition between the young marine and the cop in posture. Both wearing ties, both with their caps pushed back. You could just about picture the cop sitting in the same position twenty-six years earlier. Frequently the more you look at a Rockwell painting the more you see, and the more you can read into it.

kodak_ken said...

I have always loved the detail that NR puts in. From the headline we can see that Joe worked at the station. The fact that his raincoat is hung by his tribute indicates he has his old job waiting for him. Among the ribbons on his chest is the Silver Star for valor and the Purple Heart for being wounded. Look at the tightness around his eyes. This is a young man aged by the horrors that he has seen. I agree with a previous poster: I think the cop on the right may be remembering telling his friends about the wounds that he received in Belleau Wood. And the wheel turns. I always hoped that Joe was able return to the life he had and put the war behind him.