Monday, November 18, 2013

Coy - Part Nine - "Crazy Man" - (A)


Part Nine

"Crazy Man"


            What is my crazy man?  Why do I need him?
            No average gentleman; a wandering fool, will ‘some help’ me.  No average lout of a dispensating practitioner of old New England antiquarian attic creeping; a flashlight beam for I... to follow behind, will:  “Not on your life!” for I have not ‘followed behind’ another’s light IN an old New England garret... ever.  No... I need ‘we need’... a step ladder of clarity to find the right... crazy man... for the right fight...  in the right way... to view the ‘truth be damned’ that the old New England, although turned up side down... be... RIGHT THERE in the muck of the ‘forgotten about’ and ‘not known of’ within the congested rummaging, ransacking, looting, carrying off OF and... BE A BETTER... ‘coy façade of fabricated myth ...that is New England’... then ALL a New England ‘right side up’.
            ‘Be damned’ that there can be a ‘coy façade of fabricated myth’ that is THAT OLD to be THAT; a myth STILL and... be that too; A MYTH... and too... be ‘forgotten’ and ‘not known of’?  BREEZING BY that ‘old print’ at the turn of the stair top as one descends to ...depart from ‘checking on’ ‘Mother’.  Passing by the dark wood framed BROWN with age tone, STAINED from the ...same water that runs down the WALL and wallpaper known as ‘roof leak’ “It’s WET there AGAIN”.  Why didn’t they MOVE the old print out of harms way?  BECAUSE they don’t even see that it’s... ‘hanging there’.  But that old brown spot on the wall tells a tale. 

            I took it from their ‘home’; their ‘mother’s estate’.  But they TOLD me I ‘bought it’... and were very smug and pleased with that; to ‘be rid of that’ ‘old frame’.  THAT is what I bought... their ‘old frame’... with the wet brown wallpaper behind it... leaving a lighter rectangle ON that paper for all to see as proclamation that YES I... had ‘bought a frame’ and ‘made off with’ ‘a print’.

            In the 1850’s this ...steel engraving... was ‘made’.  Sold.  Framed.  Hung.  “There”.  Why?  It says why as it’s title; “The Perils of our (New England) Forefathers”.  Then “Hadley 1675”.  The print depicts a congested church congregation in commotions as before the open church door a bearded man-ghost directs them to ...rally... to fight the savages seen behind him at the open church door that are ransacking, looting, carrying of, burning, scalping and killing... all.  It is said the ghost is General John Goffe.  It is said the attack is on Hadley, Massachusetts in King Phillip’s War in 1675.  It is said that the rally, fight and repulse was successful... due to the man-ghost of General Goffe’s leadership.  It is called a ‘fabled event’.  Goffe is called ‘The Angel of Hadley’.  The original painting from which this print was engraved, by the artist Frederick A. Chapman, is on display at the Forbes Library, Northampton, MA so may be viewed... by anyone... at any time.  This ‘print’ is a little more difficult to access.  It may be politely classified as ‘scarce’ with this being a shoddy ‘rare’ in the sense of ... good luck when one and one’s wallet goes ‘looking for one’.

            The attack (and ransack) is dated 1675.  Seventy-five years later Susannah Johnson gives birth to Elizabeth Captive on Knotty Brook.  Fifty years later she returns to Knotty Brook and places her stones.  Fifty years later this print is ‘engraved’ and ‘issued’ from the painting.  Over fifty years later from that... Susannah’s ‘Indian Stones” are cased in cement to prevent them from being ‘carried off’. 
The first written mention of the Hadley attack is an obscure sentence in the mid 1700’s.  More obscure sentences mention it VERY every now and then and very obscurely.  By the 19th century American fiction writers (including Cooper and Hawthorne) purloin the ‘Angel of Hadley’ theme.  The lighting flash of the recording of the 1675 attack on Hadley is the ...fabrication... of THIS PRINT... taken from the painting.  It; THIS PRINT, ‘does well’ commercially THEN (1850’s).  Chapman follows his success by elevated success with ...Civil War... subjects after the modest success of his... depiction of the ‘Angel of Hadley’.  This print soon... is ‘forgotten about’ and ‘not known of’.  It becomes and IS the ONLY accessible production depicting ‘this’; the 1675 attack on Hadley, MA.  It is the only memorial placed ‘to this’.
            Where is the crazy man in all of this?  No where; there is no crazy man here.  This is only the first wrung on the ladder of my search for a crazy man to ‘help me’.  It is the first wrung on the ladder for it is a ‘coy façade of a fabricated myth that is New England’.  There never was an Indian attack on Hadley in 1675.  There never was an Indian attack on Hadley ever.  There never was a congested commotion of the congregation of the church to be lead by a ghost-man General Goffe in successful defense of Hadley.  General Goffe was not a crazy man.  He was not a ghost.  For nearly three hundred and fifty years the ‘attack on Hadley’ has stood as a splendid example of a ‘coy façade of fabricated myth that is New England’.  Today it is ‘forgotten about’ and ‘not known about’.  It is pitched to the side.  I found it hanging in an old frame on a wet wall at the top of the front stairs of a ‘roof leaks’ ‘mother’s estate’.  It (the print and its frame) were not actually ‘up side down’ themselves.  But the whole of that ...old New England estate... was... up side down.  It is that this ...myth of New England... is very, very old... AND turned up side down...: that is what I need it for; for my ‘need some help’ with.
            Why?  Because the congested New England... that is right side up... wishes myths be gone.  I find... they are still here.

1 comment:

  1. Comfort in the myth, don’t change it, we all unknowingly and willingly grasp living with it as is…yet, was Tomhegan actually “stripped, tied to the back of a bucking horse”??? It’s a very acceptable ending to Segar’s capture… but the capture??? The “last Indian raid”???