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December 29, 2010

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This is terrific. I'm sharing it with all of my writing colleagues at Goucher.

Lovely tribute.

Fred Kahn: everyone called him Fred. In Ithaca, which is after all a very small town, we favored the same lunch spot, the Cafe de Witt. He would be sitting against the wall reading the New York Times and if he saw me he'd wave me over and we'd lunch together. One time I asked him about the stock market. Fred said that he was mad at his Merrill Lynch broker for some costly trades. He had lost plenty that year. I couldn't believe that he didn't do his own stock picking -- he, a world-renowned economist. Think of the money, I said. He stopped me. They pay me obscene amount of money, he said, shrugging, as if the stock market losses amounted to a hill of beans in this crazy world. Speakers' fees had been good to Fred. And, he added, the stock market defied his powers of prognostication. And then he laughed and I laughed with him. He was a wonderful fellow.

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I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark
                   

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman


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Ringfinger was nervous
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to the rule of Thumb.

 

 


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