Our Daily Bleed...
Then came days of regret upholstered in grey silk. I twisted my ring frantically around my finger. I drank too much coffee. I was a bag of nerves & Mother, driven by the craziest illusions, prowled around me like a crow in the festooned vines. She was hoping I'd leave. I didn't care to leave her alone. With my head on her knees, I'd listen to time falling, drop by drop, into the sink.
— Joyce Mansour, "Infinitely
. . .on the Grass"
Lesbian poet, gay emancipationist, jubilator.
Gambia: NATIONAL INDEPENDENCE DAY.
1546 -- Reformation leader Martin Luther dies.
1574 -- Zeeland falls to Dutch rebels. The losers vow to move, "to a New Zeeland!"
1678 -- John Bunyan's The Pilgrim's Progress is published. Begun while he was in prison for preaching without a license.
1688 -- Pennsylvania Quakers make first formal protest against slavery.
1780 -- Kristijonas Donelaitis, Lithuanian poet, dies, Tolmingkehmen (now Chistyye Prudy).
1834 -- US: The first American labor newspaper, The Man, is published, NYC.
1847 -- Jean Baguet lives (aka Jean Bayet). French anarchiste exiled to Switzerland to avoid arrest following demonstrations at Montceau-the-Mines in August 1882. Sentenced in absentia to five years prison at the "Trial of the 66," January 1883.
1849 -- Alexander Kielland (1849 - 1906) lives. Norwegian novelist, considered one of "the four great ones" of the 19th century along with Henrik Ibsen, Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, & Jonas Lie.
Emma Goldman on Ibsen:
1851 -- US: A crowd of Boston Negroes break into the federal prison, rescue Frederick Jenkins, a southern slave jailed under the terms of the Fugitive Slave Act, & spirit him away to freedom in Canada.
Source: [Calendar Riots]
1856 -- US: American (Know-Nothing) Party abolishes secrecy, then denies it.
1859 -- US: Dan Sickles is first man in the US to use the `Temporary Insanity' plea.
1859 -- Yiddish novelist Sholem Aleichem lives.
1861 -- US: Arapaho & Cheyenne cede most of eastern Colorado — land guaranteed to them "forever" in an 1851 treaty.
1867 -- Hungary: Nonviolent resistance to Austrian oppression results in separate constitution.
1873 -- US: The American Way: House of Representatives reports on Credit Mobilers scandal. Reveals government allotted far more money (welfare) than needed to subsidize the building of the Union Pacific Railroad. Credit Mobiler Corporation was then set up to build the railroad, & stock in it was gratefully sold, at a fraction of its true value, to the congressmen & government officials responsible for providing the excess grants.
1883 -- Cretan poet/novelist/thinker Nikos Kazantzakis lives, Heraklion, Crete. Jubilator of raki, song & dance. Best known for Zorba the Greek. See 2 December 1885, also given as his date of birth by some sources.
1884 -- Moscow police seize all copies of anarchist Leo Tolstoy's What I Believe In at the printers.
The indications ...are that perhaps an explosion occurred in the sky, near Colchester, upon Feb.18, 1884 (Was not the loud report heard...probably an explosion in the sky, inasmuch as the sound was great & the quake was little? Were not succeeding phenomena sounds & concussions & the fall of debris from explosions in the sky...)
1885 -- Mark Twain novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is published.
1887 -- Spain: Juan Peiro Belis (1887-1942) lives. Anarco-sindicalista theorist & militant in the CNT. An assiduous contributor to the libertarian press with his many reviews & newspapers.
During the Spanish Revolution Peiro became Minister of Industry (three other pajaros carpinteros — 'woodpeckers' — also took major government posts). His brief participation was heresy to libertarian principles...
1893 -- Bulgarian anarchist Alexander Sapoundjiev lives (1893-1975). alt sp., Alexandre Sapoundjiev
1895 -- England: Lord Queensberry leaves a card for Oscar Wilde at the Albemarle Club calling him a "somdomite" (the basis of Wilde's libel suit).
1896 -- André Breton (1896-1966) lives, Tinchebray, France. Poet, essayist, critic, editor, communist, surrealist, promoter. One of the founders of Surrealist movement with Paul Eluard, Josef Agnon, Luis Bunuel, Dali, Aragon, Jean Cocteau, et al. In 1916 he met Jacques Vaché, a legendary predecessor of dadaism. His first publications were influenced by Rimbaud. When Tristan Tzara came to Paris from Zürich in 1916, Breton joined the Paris DaDa movement together with his friends Paul Eluard & Phillipe Soupalt.
An anarchist world...a surrealist world:
They are the same
— André Breton
1903 -- The Dutch government of Abraham Kuyper launches anti-strike laws.
1905 -- Frank Wedekind play "Hidada" premiers, Munchen.
1908 -- US: America bars Japanese immigration.
1909 -- Wallace Stegner lives. Pulitzer-winning novelist, critic (Angle of Repose).
1916 -- US: The brothers Enrique & Ricardo Flores Magón arrested at their Community Farm near Los Angeles, California. Enrique is beaten by the Officer Friendlies & hospitalized. Both are charged with mailing articles inciting "murder, arson & treason," & sent to prison (for the 8th time), as the US government continues its efforts to crush the Magon brothers & the Junta of the PLM.
Ricardo y Enrique Flores Magón son nuevamente arrestados. Dificultades para la circulación de Regeneración, que es puesto fuera del registro postal Se establece el Congreso Constituyente.
[Details / context]
1918 -- Russia: Germans invade the country, which is all but defenseless, as virtually the entire army has deserted.
1928 -- Canada: Emma Goldman leaves Montreal for Halifax, Nova Scotia, where she embarks for France on Feb. 20.
1928 -- Kurt Weill opera "Der Zar lasst sich Photographieren" premiers, Germany.
1929 -- Len Deighton lives, London. Spy novelist (Ipcress File; Funeral in Berlin).
1930 -- Outer Space: Pluto is discovered.
1930 -- The Milkman Cometh?: There is no stopping progress! Cow flown & milked, milk sealed in paper containers & parachuted. Think we already done did this yesterday, but this is too much fun....curdles the imagination.
1930 -- Gahan Wilson lives. Macabre cartoonist, author.
1930 -- Poet Joel Oppenheimer lives, Yonkers, NY. (The Dancer; The Great American Desert). Attended Black Mountain College where he studied with Charles Olson & Paul Goodman. He lived among the poets & artists of Greenwich Village, & was a columnist for The Village Voice from 1969-1978.
1931 -- African American editor/novelist Toni Morrison lives, Lorain, Ohio. Noble prize winner, best known for Song of Solomon.
1932 -- Milos Forman, lives, Czechoslovakia. US film director (One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest).
1933 -- Yoko Ono, author (Grapefruit)/performance artist/composer, lives.
1933 -- Italy: During this month Gian Carlo Pajetta, esponente del partito comunista, è arrestato a Reggio Emilia. Sarà condannato dal tribunale speciale a 21 anni di carcere.
1934 -- Audre Lorde lives, New York City. African-American poet/essayist/autobiographer, passionate writer on lesbian feminism & racial issues. Author of the highly praised poetry in The Black Unicorn (1978).
In her book, Black Women Writers, Lorde says, (quote) "The question of social protest & art is inseparable. . . . Art for art's sake doesn't exist for me."
Her poetry speaks powerfully against racial & sexual oppression, as well as her erotic poems breaking the silence on lesbian love (quote):
"Within a woman's capacity for feeling, our ability to love, to touch the erotic, lies so much of our power, our ability to posit, to vision."
1936 -- Marin Sorescu lives (1936 - 1996). Rumanian poet, dramatist.
1936 -- Novelist Jean Auel lives. (Clan of the Cave Bear).
1942 -- Dog-Eared?: Payson Terhune dies. Author of numerous novels in which dogs are central to the books.
1943 -- US: Japanese-American internment camps initiated during WWII. Some pigs, not wanting to be less equal than other pigs, were not about to let the German & the Japanese governments get one up on them.
1944 -- Italy: La repubblica sociale italiana introduce la pena di morte per i renitenti alla leva. Combattere e morire o morire senza combattere; con lo stato tutte le alternative sono mortifere.
Source: [Crimini e Misfatti]
1949 -- Richard Rosen lives, Chicago, mystery novelist (Strike Three, You're Dead; Saturday Night Dead, Dead Ball), featuring Harvey Blissberg, ex-major league baseball player turned private eye.
"The poem is the point
at which our strength
1951 -- Alberto Blanco lives. Mexican poet, translator (Dhammapada).
1953 -- US: "Bwana Devil," the movie that heralded the 3D fad of the 1950s, opens in New York City.
1959 -- Jacques Doubinsky (Iakov Dubinsky; 1889-1959) dies. As a young labor radical he joined the Ukrainian peasant uprising in 1918, fighting with the insurrectionary Makhnovist army.
Doubinsky went to Bulgaria, but was arrested & tortured before escaping & permanently settling in France. A director of the Jewish anarchist library "L'autodidacte", involved with "La libre Pensée" & in assisting Bulgarian refugees. His grandson is the anarchist & writer, Sebastien Doubinsky.
1959 -- ¶ During this month Beatster Jack Kerouac records narration for the film Pull My Daisy. Later this month Kerouac's affair with Dody Müller ends.
1965 -- US: Civil rights worker Jimmie Lee Jackson is beaten & shot by state police in Marion, Alabama. He dies eight days later.
1968 -- US: Police Riot on Haight Street. Police sweep Haight Street after a spontaneous gathering blocks traffic in the afternoon. The police action lasts several hours.
1969 -- US: Feb 18-19 Howard University building is seized & boycott starts. This follows on the heels of a law school protest on the 12th. Things are beginning to heat up on campuses all over the US.
1970 -- US: Federal jury finds the "Chicago 7" innocent of conspiring to incite riots during the 1968 Democratic National Convention. However, five were convicted of crossing state lines with intent to incite riots. See also 24 September 1969.
1972 -- California Supreme Court ends death penalty, finds capital punishment "cruel & unusual." Notable criminals whose lives were spared by the ban on executions include Charles Manson & Sirhan Sirhan.
Italy: Letters to an Editor, the collected correspondence between the Situationist International & the Italian publishing house Feltrinelli, is published during this month by Gianfranco Sanguinetti, in poster form, & plastered around Milan.
1973 -- US: Octzilla? 119-lb octopus measuring 23 feet across captured in Hood Canal, Washington.
1975 -- West Germany: Water cannons & batons disperse occupiers of nuclear power site, Wyhl.
1977 -- US: Fat Tuesday crowds turn unruly, according to unruly Seattle police (-Feb. 19).
1977 -- Germany: 110,000 demonstrate against the US war in Vietnam War in West Berlin.
1979 -- A Snow Job?: First time in living memory, snow falls on the Sahara desert (in southern Nigeria).
1979 -- US: Fat Tuesday festival ends in a melee, Seattle (-Feb. 19).
1980 -- US: Beloved & Respected Comrade Acting Leader Ronald Reagan claims coal plants release more radioactivity than nuclear ones.
1983 -- US: The Wah Mee Massacre in Seattle is the worst mass-murder in the history of Washington State.
1985 -- Feb 18-21 South African police kill 18 demonstrators at Crossroads, in Capetown, injure 200. Before the month is out, they will kill another 69 on 25th anniversary of the Sharpeville massacre (1960). Also, some 1900 people are arrested in the US demonstrating against South African apartheid in last several months.
1990 -- Nepal: Police clash with pro-democracy demonstrators, at least four die.
1992 -- México: México City announces plans to build giant antipollution fans.
¡Oh, crap! ¡¿¡¿De end of WWE wrestling smackdown!?!?
1995 -- Bob Stinson, a founding member of The Replacements dies in Minneapolis of complications from drug & alcohol abuse. The band found a replacement.
1997 -- Turkey: Political prisoner Osman Murat Ulke is one of 12 activists charged with "alienating the people from the military."
2001 -- Count Balthassar Klossowski de Rola dies. The Count, an artist who painted under the name Balthus, is among the best known realists of the 20th century. His works span from early in the 1900's through his death. Balthus was well-known for painting erotic pictures of young girls, some of which were called "pornographic" by critics. But, we kinda like 'em anyhow.
2003 -- US: Beloved & Respected Comrade Leader G. Dubya Bush says he will ignore protests over war against Iraq. Better believe it...for once (unfortunately) a truth emanates from the White House. "All Hat & No Cattle" is no longer an operative appellation for this TexassLongHorn.
2011 -- US: 71-year-old army vet & retired CIA officer-turned-political activist Ray McGovern is thrown out, bloodied & arrested while protesting a speech by Hillary Rodham Clinton on internet freedom at George Washington University in Washington, DC. Clinton was speaking of abuses of power that occur when governments like that of Hosni Mubarak’s Egypt silence their citizens...oddly, McGovern was standing silently when jumped & dragged away by cops. Veterans for Peace demands Clinton apologize.
"When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe."
— John Muir, 1869
Collage by SaintMeister James Koehnline
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