the newest winter soldiers

In my work on this book, I:ve mostly been immersed in the stories of the first Winter Soldiers in 1776, discovering long-forgotten dissenters like Matthew Lyon and Nicholas Trist. But last weekend, I visited with Vietnam Veterans Against the War, the group that first inspired me to write it. At a gathering im Brooklyn ofContinue reading “the newest winter soldiers”

many mazeltovs to a giant

When the Macarthur Awards were announced this spring, I can’t believe I missed it;  that one went to Dr. Jonathan Shay. Luckily,  Lily was more attentive, noting it on her own invaluable blog, Healing Combat Trauma. The debt owed Shay by so many of us is hard to quantify. HCT has the links to severalContinue reading “many mazeltovs to a giant”

you look up and who's there? dave cline.

But David Cline I did. David Cline, former president of Veterans for Peace, whose famous journey from the killing fields of Vietnam to the GI antiwar movement to the fight for Agent Orange survivors was made briefly famous by his friend David Zeiger’s great film. Cline loved the idea of my book, and he and I had countless canceled interview dates, often shoved aside by events in Fayetteville or Washington. I always thought there would be time, and looked forward to seeing him at the Rutgers conference on veterans in two weeks. He was only sixty, after all. Also brilliant and passionate and down to earth,

Silly me, silly us. There is no time, and Cline knew that better than anyone. I can’t hope to match the deeper tributes here from fellow Vietnam veterans and here from the Iraq vets he was so busy mentoring. So I’ll fall back on Berryman, again, who finds a sideways way in to the worst.

you look up and who's there? dave cline.

But David Cline I did. David Cline, former president of Veterans for Peace, whose famous journey from the killing fields of Vietnam to the GI antiwar movement to the fight for Agent Orange survivors was made briefly famous by his friend David Zeiger’s great film. Cline loved the idea of my book, and he and I had countless canceled interview dates, often shoved aside by events in Fayetteville or Washington. I always thought there would be time, and looked forward to seeing him at the Rutgers conference on veterans in two weeks. He was only sixty, after all. Also brilliant and passionate and down to earth,

Silly me, silly us. There is no time, and Cline knew that better than anyone. I can’t hope to match the deeper tributes here from fellow Vietnam veterans and here from the Iraq vets he was so busy mentoring. So I’ll fall back on Berryman, again, who finds a sideways way in to the worst.

and so it begins.

I may not have the luxury of time that some of my role models had, three years on a dissertation and THEN two years to make it sing (yes, Mr. Moser, yes, Mr. Joseph, I mean you). But by June 30, 2008, all these important and compelling stories, from William Bowser to Ricky Clousing, have to coalesce into a document that speaks to people. Which means, given my penchant for UGLY first drafts, I have to get serious.

a few notes to start

I’d sworn off blogging after this graphomaniac exercise, but here we are. Today is typical. As I sit here, trying to sort out today’s work, between the transcription I need to finish for next week’s stories at the paper and my trip today to NYPL’s Schomburg Library, news old and new shouts for attention: TheContinue reading “a few notes to start”