Is Harpootlian the famous ‘person from Porlock?’

It's a stately dome. I don't know about the "pleasure" part, though...

It’s a stately dome. I don’t know about the “pleasure” part, though…

When I saw this this morning…

Panthers’ plans for SC headquarters include massive complex, hotel

The Carolina Panthers say that a complex that includes a medical facility, a hotel, entertainment venues and more are planned for the team’s York County site.

I got to thinking about Coleridge:

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.
So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round;
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery….

I guess that makes Dick Harpootlian the “person from Porlock,” since he’s the one trying to wake everyone from the dream…

5 thoughts on “Is Harpootlian the famous ‘person from Porlock?’

  1. Keith June

    Brad, just read your blog. I sent it to a friend as i enjoyed reading it so much. It occurred to me that I met you almost 20 years ago. I first met you during the march from Charleston to Columbia to protest the Confederate flag. Hard to believe that was in 2000. And my how the world has changed since then. I would like to get your thoughts on how this issue has changed over the last years. Back then, everyone thought we were making progress by simply removing the flag from atop the Statehouse. And I hear so many echoes of the same arguments today that I heard for years in SC. To be perfectly honest, I didn’t fully realize how the issue of the flag was so tied to racism. Maybe not by all, but definitely by some, indeed a great many. But I am grateful that SC has moved forward as a state. I was delighted to see the CLC host an NCAA basketball tournament a few months ago. I suspect most people didn’t understand what a big deal that was but for those of us who have followed this issue over the last 50+ years, it was a huge deal. Many thanks for the great writing over these many years. Keith June

    Reply
  2. Tom E Stickler

    In Levittown did Irving Kahn
    A lovely Cape Cod house decree:
    Where Alf, the Sacred Neuman dwelt,
    And Nick Fazool and Olaf Svelt.
    And even Sean McGee.

    There, fifty feet of crabgrass ground
    With picket fence were girdled round.
    A place for little Milt to play,
    A port for Irving’s Chevrolet.

    But just one thing is not the very best,
    you can’t tell Irving’s place from all the rest!

    Reply
    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      I love it! I actually think your poem stands on its own. Nice.

      Way better than “little boxes made of ticky-tacky”…

      And thank you for taking me up on this allusion…

      Reply

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