Happy Val Day

Interesting, isn’t it, that one of America’s most notorious authors of books banned under then-existing obscenity laws had the middle name Valentine? All true. Henry Valentine Miller.
“The publication of Miller’s Tropic of Cancer in the United States in 1961 by Grove Press led to a series of obscenity trials that tested American laws on pornography. The U.S. Supreme Court, in Grove Press, Inc., v. Gerstein, citing Jacobellis v. Ohio (which was decided the same day in 1964), overruled the state court findings of obscenity and declared the book a work of literature…Following the trial, in 1964–65, other books of Miller’s which had also been banned in the US were published by Grove Press: Black Spring, Tropic of Capricorn, Quiet Days in Clichy, Sexus, Plexus and Nexus.” from the Wiki on Henry Miller

In my teens I loved Miller’s Quiet Days in Clichy, Big Sur and the Oranges of Hieronymus Bosch.
I don’t think I made it through all the Tropics. But as a teenager, I generally read everything my brothers read.
Then in my early twenties, living on my own I unconsciously switched to reading books written almost solely by or about women, Woolf and Wharton, Austen and DeBeauvoir.
This Val Day, not necessarily in this order, I’m thinking of the power of love, of books, sons and brothers, a good breakfast, foggy mornings, and the power of SCOTUS too.
And I’m bringing a bouquet of sunflowers to you to celebrate the day. They arrived early this morning, all the way from Tanzania.
Mitch is traveling through East Africa with IPFRI (International Food Policy Research Institute) and in Tanzania they stopped at a sunflower oil factory. The photos are fairly self-explanatory. Enjoy!

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8 Responses to Happy Val Day

  1. Kris P says:

    I love those cheerful sunflowers! I hope you had a wonderful Valentine’s Day and didn’t spend too much time mired in the Supreme Court drama – I suspect there will be months and months and more months to consider that issue.

  2. Renee says:

    Those are some neat pictures! The flowers are cheerful, but the machines look like they mean business. Perhaps it’s bad to admit, but I haven’t read any Henry Miller. I’ll go fix then, and then think about SCOTUS drama…

  3. Alan @ It's Not Work, It's Gardening! says:

    Love these photos! That’s a lot of different oil brands to choose from… I don’t know if there is a flower that looks better in a large field than sunflowers. Here in St. Louis city they’ve been turning empty lots into sunflower fields for a couple of years: http://landlab.wustl.edu/projects/sunflower/

  4. hoov says:

    Wonderful photos–my favs are the last one, and the one of the two workers having a chat and laughing.

  5. Denise says:

    @Kris, no, I’m not obsessing much over politics, more like marveling!
    @Renee, he’s sent a bunch more but I’m keeping close to a plant theme. Miller was racy for his day, but cable TV nowadays is probably racier!
    @Alan, thanks for that link!
    @Hoov, the heat and humidity has been formidable, says Mitch, but the locals look like it doesn’t phase them.

  6. Tim says:

    I knew that Mitch was a great photographer from your other posts and links, but the art, composition and subject matter of theses photos have me giddy. Amazing and beautiful. My favorite for content, emotion and composition is the young men talking and laughing. Perfection. Makes me smile ear to ear.

  7. Shirley says:

    Hey Denise, Thanks for putting these Mitch shots online. So great to see what he is getting up to! Wonderful photos, hope he’s having a great time

  8. Pam/Digging says:

    Terrific photos!

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