Campaign of 1940-1952 True Cincinnati spirit is the love of hearth, the principles of isolation, a life in works of service to the nation. Could he reverse the course and release the doves of peace, he’d throw his barbs at what he felt were dangers to the American way of life, decrying Roosevelt’s class war as strife not fit for the hearty sons of the rust belt, and raised his voice, in protest against the decade growth of regulation halting men from their potential liberty, with a grin that said that the federal budget must be paid. In chambers of the Senate a brusque voice is quelled as Eisenhower becomes the choice. Flame Parrots at the Monticello Gardens I admit at one point that flowers in themselves didn’t matter to me. We could agree there is some power apportioned to them, as tourists see with wonder how color and shape exist beyond the normality accustomed to. I too would rate them nice, but hunt for reality within the bulbs some touched with little imagination. I felt the heat of a land unknown within the middle gardens, and tasted it as sweet despite the great distance from soil of that Lone Star state. These transplants out east are to their essence loyal— It takes humility to recant a prior nonchalance to others’ observations, and learn to love these flowers just as a father and mother regard your traits as flashes from above. Croquet as Ritual The season shifts to rest as frost begins to coat the patterned lawn. The tangent wooden spheres that crossed such narrow spaces just draw out yawns from us settling the final game, we who heard laughter in the spring. Dressed ritually in white, we frame the year in terms of mallet swings, and so, the time comes for an end to our priesthood of scholar-preps, till swollen winter retreats and mends the court we served with our footsteps. We meditate about the reason each year we continue to ordain our lives with meaning when the season of simple lawn games comes again. Just like a quest for mythic rites, and just as arcane, the sequence starts over when evening takes in daylight later as the fall hours depart. Some act off one another, eyeing a pattern through the outlined course: the hoop, the strike, the ball just lying for an endgame by some tour de force. And others join, having the sport itself as the sole end. With skill for skill’s sake, reverence helps support set efforts, despite the missing will. We gather as passé gentlemen within a slight, barbarian age and speculate about the end someday, and still we silence our rage. Christopher Fried lives in Henrico, VA. He had his first collection of poetry, All Aboard the Timesphere, published in Summer 2013. He has contributed articles to Listverse, Knowledgenuts, TopTenz, and NewRetroWave on occasion. He's currently serving as an advisor on the proposed documentary In Search of Tomorrow.