Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Mark Twain ~ And Me

Tuesday with the Toads

Samuel Clemens died on April 21, 1910 of a heart attack, just a few years after establishing the Aquarium Club for his Angel Fish. All in all, there were around a dozen members of the club who visited Clemens regularly until his death, but his enthusiasm for the club waned in the last year of his life; he complained that his girls were growing up too fast, complained about their boyfriends, and cut off one girl when she turned sixteen.  In the end, his fondness for them primarily lying in their innocence, as something of a breath of fresh air in a cynical world, waned as they gradually lost that defining feature of children.

Angel Fish

Innocent, sweet
beneficiaries of his largess  
his world view
his wit.

Pain and lonliness fueled him  
until their innocence waned
and his angel fish 
became yesterday's catch.


  1. This is something I never knew about Twain. Fascinating.

  2. Sometimes. Sometimes we may be wanting to cut them off. But this is a more wicked world than the one Twain lived in back then. My dad was born in 1910. Thank you for the two tidbits, I hadn't known and didn't read deep enough.
    I like Twain though, one of my favorite American authors, probably more for the person he was than for his writing. I have been reading forever, since 1984, a guess, the book, "Traveling with the innocents abroad, Mark Twain's original reports from Europe and the Holy Land," where he tells the San Francisco audience of his cruise tour to Europe and the Holy Lands. My library disposed of it but I found a copy real cheap on eBay, five dollars. I'll finish some day and start over.

  3. Bravo! Thank you for this refrain with Twain

  4. became yesterday's catch... nicely done! And thanks for sharing this about Twain.

  5. that's a killer close, Helen ~

  6. But there are more fish in the sea? I loved this and never knew of it either.

  7. Something to read...how things change...nice poem!

  8. Fascinating indeed, and sad in various ways for him and them.

  9. I'm ashamed to say that I didn't know any of that, so thank you. I shall reread his work with your words in mind, and see if my experience is altered.

    Loneliness and pain are strong fuels, indeed...

  10. I hadn't known this about him either. I can't help but feel sad for him wanting to hold onto something that of course was bound to change. The last two lines are very strong.

  11. Wow! I didn't know anything about this either. No one stays the same, change is part of life's journey. Sad he couldn't embrace that.