That thump was not west wind on the storm window it was my skull on my stained pine desk at the end of Keith Jarrett playing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" on his La Scala disk. By the time he reaches that final plink I've spent a few years gone.
Those essays I was talking about (an entry or two ago) that began with a word on a leaf--so far I don't know what the hell the word was in each case but man, they went for it. The question is, how well. If that seems an inpertinent question, spare a kind thought for yours truly, who must come up with a grade.
Now I'm worried that readers of this entry--hello aunt Martha and uncle Mart--might wonder if I know what I'm doing, assigning that kind of work. (Keep reading!) It's just as easy or hard to grade as anything else. Some writing not only gets a fresh idea but finds a fresh way to say it. That's in the 80s at least (as always, depending on things like punctuation choices) With others it's one of the two, usually the first. 70s or 80s. It goes down from there.
It seems to be about challenging these skilled writers. Come up with an idea, get them to try it. See how well they do.
It's trying to get them to go to an open field.