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 #25


Willie Gillis in College (1946)

6 comments :

Jessica R. said...

This has been one of my favorite newish series of late just for the surprise in how good he is. The paintings selected are a constant surprise and a delight to lose yourself in the details.

michaelE said...

His younger brother, Dobie, was also a member of Delta Tau Chi Fraternity...

justjack said...

I think the first name is even more significant here, considering the war memorabilia hanging behind Willie's head.

Wonder if Willie's old pal Joe also made use of the GI Bill to go back to school?

Gerard Saylor said...

Mauldin did have a few psot-war cartoons with Willie and Joe. But, if I correctly remember the biography I read, he did not want to get stuck with those two characters.

martin said...

I never noticed that Willie was left-handed before.

justjack said...

Well blow me down! Willie Gillis was a Norman Rockwell running character! I never knew!