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May 02, 1948 - Image 1

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The Michigan Daily, 1948-05-02
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SUNDAY,, MAY 2, .1948


Black and Tan
(Continued from Page 5)
in my throat and I forced it out
in a cracked whisper.
"Get away from me, nigger."
Very deliberately he began to
shake his head, slowly, back and
"Ain't no nigger," he said softly.,
"Ah ain't no nigger. Niggers got
mud and dirt in their veins, so ah
ain't no nigger."
Outside a woman screamed, a
high scream full of pain, like a
wounded animal, and the crowd
roared even louder. He crouched
beside me and slowly shook his
"Ain't no nigger. They's gold
and silver a runnin' in my veins
an' ah come from far off Buzzard
Land, My mother is a horse and
my father was God and I'm a
stranger from far away. My mo-
ther is a mare with a long shining
mane and a tail that sweeps the
ground, and she's standin' on a
hill in the Land of Egypt, a wait-
in' for the comin' of God. And ah
come here from Buzzard Land."
I got my elbows under me and
started to move away from him.
It wasn't my voice anymore that
spoke to him. but a voice that did
my bidding while terror gripped
its throat and tried to crush the
"Get away from me nigger. Get
away from me or I'll kill you."
"Ain't no nigger. Ain't no mud
and dirt a runnin' in my veins.
It's way off the coast of Missis-
sippi, is Buzzard Land, and I come
there from the Land of Egypt,
where my mother's standin' on a
high black hill. a waitin' for God
to come ridin' the West Wind, and
she's waitin' there tremblin', her
black flanks tremblin', a waitin'
for the comin' of God."
His eyes rolled back,all white
and bloodshot and somehow brok-
en. It was like looking through
muddy smashed glass and seeing
nothing but fear and madness be-
hind it, nothing but terror and a
broken mind. He began to moan,
softly, way deep in his throat, his
body rocking with the sound of it.
"I'm lonely and frightened with
the buzzards all around, watchin'
for the West Wind, half-brother
to the Lord I'm a waitin' on the
West Wind, to come and take me
to the Land of Egypt, home to my
mother tremblin' on the hill, home
where God can see me once more."
I got my feet under me. Instinc-
tively I kicked out at him, trying
to keep him away from me. He
went over backwards, his arms
raised as if in prayer, and he
crumpled against the wall. He lay
very still. He moaned steadily in
his throat, not moving at all.
I went out into the alley. The
heavy steel door clashed and the
'spring lock clicked behind me. It
was dark in the alley, and filled
with the stench of stale beer and
rotting food. Between the high
walls I could see, way off at the
end, a house with a porch light
burning. I turned and started
Walking. I tripped and fell into
the trash, heard the tin cans roll-
fing, listened to the rats scurrying
tff along the wall. It was awfully
dark there. I was sorry I'd called
him nigger.
It seemed very quiet where I
was. Somehow I heard a police
siren and someone laughing hys-
terically.| And then, far off, a win-
dow opening and a voice, a wo-
man's voice singing softly, slip-
ping and echoing between the
high brick walls.
"The Blues - -
The Blues ain't .. .

The Blues ain't nothing but
a cold grey day,
And all night long it stays
that way."
I started toward the light at
the end of the alley.
I wish I hadn't called him a
The End
"The Blues," by Duke Ellington.
"Trouble," by Josh White, Sam
Gary, and William White.
The fight song: A song some-
what similar to the one in the
story was heard in a Black and
Tan nightclub in Detroit shortly
after the Louis-Walcott fight.

Spender ...
(Continued from Page 4)
long way in his search for eternal
values. Since his first work was
published he has tried many
paths, personal, social, political;
he has been frequently disappoint-
ed; he has not been defeated. Ear-
ly poems give little more than
hints of his struggles with his
world, his refusal to compromise
with contemporary society, his
constant antagonism to the status
quo. Poems of Dedicaton, In addi-
tion to its function as an expres-
sion of personal sorrow, has these
problems as its subject. Ostensib-
ly poems dedicated to a memory,
fundamentally these are poems of
dedication to a faith. In the pages
of this volume Spender reaches
certain conclusions, theses, tenets
of belief. Whether ornot they will
prove a firm basis for the produc-
tion of a new' and maturer work
remains to be seen; there is reas-
on to think that they at least lead
toward that necessary stability,
that "still centre," that inner con-
fidence from which the poet must
view his world. Spender's problems
are not his alone; his struggle has
not been his alone. His search for
"some . . . brightness to dangle
through all" has been followed by
almost every poet of recent years.
With him, they have explored the
mind of the world for some firm-
ness of purpose in a time of divid-
ed and shifting loyalties. With
him, they have searched the heart
of a civilization for some sureness
of sympathy in a time of weaken-
ed passion and insincere feeling.
With him, they have examined
the problems of half a century in
an attempt to catch sight of some
plausible, reasonable solution. If
some few have had greater success
in doing these things, surely none
has had greater integrity.
(Continued from Page 1)
a Dialali always a fighter. Honor.
Honor. He spat on the ground.
Uzman-Dialali woke up before
the cock crowed. Strips of light
stole through the thatch wall, fall-
ing on the bamboo floor and on
the mat where his wife lay asleep,
one arm flung over her forehead.
She moaned softly when he stir-
red, turned her back toward him
and remained quiet. Uzman-Dia-
lali sat up and passed his hand
over her body which was naked to
the waist, pushing the long hair
away from her neck and breasts.
She moved, murmuring inaudibly,
but did not change her position.
"You are mine, Mahommuet. You
are mine. No one can take you
away from me," his impassive eyes
seemed to say as he looked at her.
"Uzman-Dialali," she saa, nest-
ling her cheek on his palm, "Uz-
man-Dialali," but he did not
He moved his head to one side
as if listening to something and
slowly smiled. The cock crows
came shrill and muffled atfirst,
then growing louder and louder
like discordant notes that were
plucked on several kutyapis.
Inheritance .,
(Continued from Page 6)
would amount to something be-
sides that. It would happen."
It is the understandings of this
belief, the belief that "it would
happen," that makes Walter see

life in a better perspective. His
Father was not always right;
things don't happen as you want
them to happen unless you help
them happen. It was merely a
matter of Walter's placing his
family and his past in the proper
light, of seeing his relation to the
world, or at least to himself . ,
Certainly not an impossible ad-
justment, even for a person so torn
by conflict as was Walter.
So it does not seem unreal when
Eddie, at the end of the book,
"Look, Walter . .."
"Do something great."

Partners . . . .
(Continued from Page 6)
"Johnny's the only one ever
climbed that rock, ain't he, Runt?"
I nodded again.
"So you see," Zeb told me, "if I
climbed it, too, Johnny wouldn't
be the only one no longer. I'd have
took something from my partner.
Isn't that right?"
I understood then. I'm awful
sorry I called Zeb scared. He could
have climbed the Witch, wasn't
for Johnny. That's why Zeb
slipped, he said. He didn't think
about it 'til he was way up past
the fifth ledge. Then it come to
him sudden how he was stealing
from his partner. Coming to him
so fast, he just forgot where he
was and let go. Even then Zeb was
going back up, he said, the hank-
ering was so bad. But Zeb couldn't
do Johnny like that. So he came
It wasn't because he was scared.
It was account of Johnny he came
Zeb gave me a hoist up on Old
Zeb and we came back in to the
Big House. On the way Zeb did-
n't talk. He was hunched over in
the saddle with his chin bounc-
ing on his chest. I told him John-
ny sure would be happy to hear
how much much Zeb had did for
Zeb sat up straight.
"You don't say nothin' about
this, Runt. D'you hear! To John-
ny or anybody."
Zeb was angry.
I said I didn't see why not. Zeb
had a hand on the saddle horn and
he squeezed till the knuckles stood
out white. He was fierce looking.
Then he loosed hold and smiled at
'Why Runt," he said, I wouldn't
want Johnny thinkin' I'd even try
climbin' that rock. What kind of
a partner would do that?"
Zeb kept on lookin' at me.
"I thought you was old enough
to see that, Runt," he said.
I should've seen right away how
that rock belongs to Johnny. We
can't let Johnny know Zeb almost
robbed from him. I told Zeb I un-
derstood all right.
Then Zeb put on his jacket and
buttoned it clear to the chin over
his tore shirt. He licked the blood
off his hand where he'd hit the
Witch and pulled on his gloves.
"You better wipe up your face
some," Zeb said. "So nobody'll
know you been bawlin'."
I got out my kerchief and wiped
my face. It took awhile before I

Vacuum-. ..

(Continued from


'age 6)
hrough the

tic stock descended t
French symbolist line.

in this conference, Croce was
repudiated. After his pape'f was
read, in translation, the panel of
critics nodded their comment to
Blackmur's statement that they
had probably all been introduced
to aesthetics by Croce but had all
outgrown him. The Southern
group rejected his theory of art
as the expression of intuitional as
contrasted with conceptual knowl-
edge. Read, though an expres-
sionist, was repelled by Croce's
failure to recognize and encour-
age the new poets and painters.
Mr. Blackmur's paper, "A Bur-
den for Critics," was the most
brilliant, rhetorically, and the
most comprehensive. The burden
of the contemporary writer and
critic is, he said, almost unbear-
able, for modern experience is
vast, our society disorganized, our
traditions disintegrated. Modern
writers like Joyce and Shaw have
reflected the disintegration of our
world, but they must do mbre-
they must achieve order. Recent
criticism has elucidated the dif-
ficult poetry and painting of our
age, but it must do more-it must
judge. Poets must be forced by
criticism to make positive state-
ments as well as intimate private

preted and judged not only as to
its technique but as to its ideas.
The critics must explore are for
that full aesthetic knowledge of
reali t y combining conceptual
thinking with concrete experience
through symbols. This fulness of
knowledge makes art superior to
science which can offeryonly ab-
stractions from reality. There-
fore, nowadays we look to the
aesthetic experience to discover
what life is. The critic in inter-
preting and evaluating the aes-
thetic expreince must exercise his
rational imagination. Blackmur's
attempt to reunite concept and in-
tuition in the creative act, univer-
sal statement and particlar image
in the poem, and reason and im-
agination in the critical judgment
seemed to this listener the most
promising utterance of the whole
Our hopes were somewhat
clouded during the final sympo-
'sium when, under pressure from.
Read, Blackmur admitted that the
judgment of the critic was valid
not for the poet but for the audi-
ence. Joyce, Mann, and Gide
whom Blackmur had described as
expressing disorder and break-
down, he now asserted to possess
order which their readers failed to
perceive and which it was the crit-
ics function to point out. This
member of the audience wondered
if the aesthetic order imposed by
the great poet or novelist is quite
the same as the moral, intellectual,
and social order we are all so hun-


Z ip Sirrigan &d13j

VOL. I, No. 1

SUNDAY, MAY 2, 1948


By lieutriz Manuel


feelings.. No poem is completely gry for. Is there any usuable, liv-
performed until it has been inter- able order in Finnegans Wake,

got up courage to ask Zeb. After!
a bit I did-
'Zeb. Havin' this secret from
Johnny and all. It kind of makes
us-partners, too. Don't it?" I
held my breath.
Zeb grinned and put his hand
on my shoulder.
"Sure does," Zeb said, "Part-
I never felt so proud.
Zeb didn't talk any more 'cept-
ing that once just before we got
"Nobody need know. Nobody
never need know," Zeb sort of
whispered, with his face all dark.
Zeb sure feels bad about almost
robbing his partner.
Then we rode out of the big
grass into the clearing front of the
Big House and saw Grandpa and
Johnny waitin' on the porch.
That's why I'm gettin' the tan-
ning. It's worth it, though, Zeb
and me bein' partners and all.
I' sure hwish I hadn't called Zeb

The Counterfeiters, the Joseph
novels? The mask of irony is
magnificent but can we wear it
and be real in a real world? The
distresses and brutalities of the
great and common world are so
much simpler and more terrible
than the subtle agonies of these
self-tormenting geniuses that the
exquisite orderliness of the work
of art, its symmetry of sounds and
balance of moods, its perfected
design give us no clue to possible
orders in the real world-except
perhaps an order in retreat, a
composure in renunciation, a dig-
nified withdrawal into art.
Since du:ng the symposium
all the speakers had insisted that
fullest and best insight into life,
imaginative literature offered the
I wanted to arise at this late
point and ask, "Just what life are
you and your poets in contact
with?" The answer might well
have been, "The life of the spirit."
But it did seem remote, and veiled,
and a little scented. I left without
asking the question and felt more
at home on the bus to the station.

Beatriz Manuel came to Mich-
igan in 1946 as a transfer stud-
ent from the University of the
Philippines. Switching from a con-
centration in pharmacy, she is now
a senior in the literary college
majoring in English. Born in Man-
ila in 1925, Miss Manuel grew up
in Bavao, the locale of her story,
and the place to which she wants
to return to do newspaper work
aftereherr" graduation in June.
WHEN UZMAN - Dialali walked
into the small store, scraping
the mud off his bare feet against
the floor, he noted that the four
men who sat before the table
drinking tuba had suddenly stop-
ped talking. He put one hand into
a small denim pouch that hung by
his side, took out a betel nut and
chewed it noisily. He passed by
the table, looking straight ahead
and spat on the floor. The pinch-
faced Chinese left his abacus and
approached him.
"Give me a can of sardines,"
Uzman-Dialali said.I
Pushing aside the bunches of
bananas that dangled before the
shelf and covered with fruit flies,
the Chinese took a small narrow
can from the top of a pile ar-
ranged in a pyramidal form.
"No. I want the Cortadela kind,"
Uzman-Dialali said in a mono-
tone. He heard the chairs being
pushed back, and knew that the
men were leaving. He kept his
eyes on the Chinese who was part-
ly concealed among the bananas.
The cans suddenly rolled to the
floor one after the other.
The face of the Chinese was
blanched, almost a sickening yel-
low and the eyes were dilated as
he stood before Uzman-Dialali.
"Can I give you some other
"I'm afraid I do not have any
Cortadela right now."
"Afraid? You certainly chose
the right word. Afraid? Afraid to
die, eh? All men are alike. Mo-
hammedans. - Buddhists. - Chris-
tians. All are afraid of death.
Huh, you are like the rest. Too
useless to die," he thought. He
walked away from the counter.
His sack lay by the doorway,
its mouth sagging. Loosening the
drawstring, which had been white
before but was now a dirty brown
almost the color of the sack, he
drew out a small bundle wrapped
in banana leaf and tied with
braided hemp. He sat down on the
top step which was shaded by the
mango tree. Squinting his eyes,
he looked at the front-yard, bare
except for the gumamela bushes,
untrimmed and dirt-covered. Mov-
ing his fingers about the bundle,
not taking his eyes from the
bushes, he untied his lunch. The
rice was already cold. He molded
it into small balls, inserting small
pieces of the broiled fish in each
ball and ate. No one was around.
Not even the old men who sat' on
the benches in the front-yard
stroking and petting their cocks.
Only the nails on the ground to
which the cocks were tied re-
mained. They, too, like him were
waiting. With fascination, Uzman-
Dialali looked at the ground about
the nails where the spittle of the
eock-fighters had given it an al-
most brick-red color. He glanced
back at the straggly bushes then
to the brick-red earth.
Uzman-Dialali ate very slowly.
When he finished, he folded the
banana leaf into a small square
and placed it back into the sack.
Everything he did had a deliber-
ateness in it, as if he had planned
and worked for each act. Kneel-
ing on the floor, he opened the
sack's mouth, peered into it, thrust
his hand inside, and got up-carry-
ing the sack with him. The store
was empty when he re-entered.
He placed the sack on the counter.

As he poured water into a glass

from a small earthen jar, he saw
that the cans were still on the
floor. He sat before the table, fac-
ing the counter, tilting his tur-
baned head to one side and clasp-
ing and unclasping his hands. He
looked at his fingers. They were
knotty and long and the thumb
nails were red from the betel nut
stains. He held them before him,
bracing his elbows against the
edge of the table. They did not
tremble. His fingers never trem-
bled, especially before a duel. This
was his first fight against a Chris-
tian, and while he flexed his wrists
he wondered why he ever gave
that a thought at all. As if being
a Christian made all the differ-
ence. Moros and Christians were
no different from one another.
Maybe they were. He had to see
after the fight if Christians bled
as much as the Moros did.
Unconsciously he called his wife,
Mahommet, to his mind. His brows
wrinkled, confusion spread over
his bronze face, but in an instant
it assumea once more c 'nex-
pressive mask. "Fool. Only fools
think about such things before a
fight." His spittle fell on the low-
est rung of the steps where beer-
bottle tops were nailed wrong side
up close to each other.
His wife was seated on the bam-
boo stairs, a winnowing basket on
her lap, when he left the house
that morning. Her black hair
drawn away from her face and
caught in a big knot at the nape
mace her look surprisingly thin
and old. They both gazed at one
another and did not say anything.
Her eyes were swollen but met his
bravely. "My husband, I'll wait for
you," she whispered. Even as he
neared the bamboo clumps that
grew by the bend of the road, the
words came back, "My husband.
My husband. Wait. Wait."
Waiting. He was waiting for
Mahommet to come home from
the river where she did her wash-
ing the night she stumbled along
the trail naked and fell on the
stairs. He waited until her moans
and sobs ceased. He waited while
she told the story. Piece by piece.
He waited for his own voice to
come out, and when it did it was
harsh and strange-sounding. As
he lay beside his wife he waited
and waited for the dawn to come.
Uzman-Dialali was a fighter. All
Dialalis were fighters. No Chris-
tian could ever accuse him of cow-
ardice. He had challenged An-
selmo to aduel that afternoon. He
even let him choose the time. An-
selmo might as well pick the time
most suitable for his own death.
He recalled that the last fight he
had was on a hot noon day and he
almost got killed in one unpre-
pared second because the glare
from Marad-Adji's kris blinded
and made him dizzy.
Uzman-Dialali seldom spoke to
the other hemp strippers in the
plantation, so when the new work-
er, Anselmo, came he considered
him like the rest of the workers.
Boisterous. Lazy. Drunkards. He
only grimaced when the young
stripper on seeing him for the first
time in the Chinese store called
him "Datu Uzman." He saw him
mostly on paydays, which occur-
red twice a month, when he would
stagger out of the store singing ri-
bald Visayan songs at the top of
his voice or quarrelling with the
other men.
"Hello, Uzman, Datu Uzman,"
he called out to him once, "Datu
Uzman, Enrique here tells me that
you have a beautiful wife. And
very young, too. Where do you
keep her? In your Moro cotta?
Huh, Datu Uzman?"
"Shut up, Anselmo," his com-
panion told him, "do you want to
die soon? Why you've got so many

1 years to live yet. And why pick aI

Mora? Can you stand her black-
ened evenly filed teeth?"
It was during the harvest sea-
son when Mahommet came to the
stripping mill bringing a basket of
food. She wore a tight pink jacket
and a black cloth wound around
her slender hips. All turned as she
walked by, the men unloading the
brown trunks of abaca from the
carts, those squatting on the
ground cutting the young leaves
off, and the others in the bodega,
their faces covered with oil-streaks
and dirt.
When Uzman-Dialali, who was
drying the hemp fibers saw Ma-

selmo, you will certainly make
some girl happy by being a lav-
andero yourself."
"Ah, the great Anselmo in love.
Ah, lucky man."
"Hey, not so loud. Even these
trunks cAWhear:"
"Fool! Who ° is afraid to say
whathe thinks is right aloud?"
The sound of men's voices
caught Uzman-Dialali's attention.
They were all outside. He took the
sack from the counter, got his kris
and a white jacket with pearl but-
tons that ran along the front. He
put the jacket on, buttoning the
tight-fitting sleeves, unwound his

--John Page


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hommet he met her. "What do you
have there?"
"Oh, broiled fish, dried shrimps,
sweet potatoes-"
"Hey, Datu Uzman," Anselmo's
voice came, "you promised to in-
troduce me."
"And perhaps you have some
papayas, too," Uzman-Dialali con-
"Yes," Mahommet replied, her
face flushed, "I have three small
ripe ones."
"Is one for me?" Anselmo said.
"Come, Mahommet," Uzman-
Dialali said, holding her elbow,
"let's sit over there and eat." After
they had sat down, he observed
that Mahommet turned toward
the mill.
Anselmo and Mahommet. An-
selmo and Mahommet. Of course,
they never spoke about these two
in his presence. Not directly. He
knew the workers sneered at him.
A Moro outwitted by a Christian.
He told himself that it was only
because they envied him. Did not
all Christians crave everything for
themselves? What did they care
about their non-Christian broth-
"Oho, Anselmo, another new
shirt?" Uzman-Dialali would over-
hear as he twisted the yellowish
fibers around the bamboo poles.
"Haven't our young men been
to the river too often? Well, An-

turban revealing his head that
had been shaved. He held the kris.
It was still in its scabbard. It was
bad luck for one to unsheath his
weapon before the actual fight.
He always took his kris out when
he already faced his opponent. He
stood in the doorway, broad-shoul-
dered and tall. By his side hung
the kris. A small circle of men
had formed in front of the store.
Anselmo sat between two men, one
of whom was the overseer. An-
selmo was quiet.
Uzman-Dialali held the handle
of his kris, passing his fingers
gently over it. To him the spec-
tators were nothing but chatter-
ing monkeys. The kris was his
only friend. He walked down the
steps. The circle brcke as the
people let him pass, then closed
in again. Uzman-Dialali saw that
the nails had been removed. Only
the brick-red on the ground was
there. Some of the men smiled
faintly at him, buL no one spoke
to him.
"Who has the time?" a man
with an open shirt asked.
"Two minutes. Two minutes be-
fore three," one replied, placing
the watch back into a hip pocket.
"Well, what does Anselmo say?"
the man with the open shirt said.
"That Moro is a better fighter.



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