OF MICE AND MEN

 

bindle stiff Slang. a migrant worker or hobo who carries his own bedroll [bindle is an alteration of bundle] - American Heritage Dictionary

 

    Of Mice And Men Poster.jpg (24966 bytes)I love this yarn.  What a yarn.  I suspect people who deny loving this yarn, love this yarn.  Homeless, lonely, barley-buckin' 'bos; little, bitter George, and big, dumb Lennie; po' ol' Candy and Crooks; wiseass bully George & Lennie.jpg (31193 bytes)Curly, and the flirty femme from Salinas known only as Curly's wife...

 

    In Salinas here, I do take advantage of my proximity to the hundreds of locations that show up in Steinbeck's stories.  Charlie Chaplin loved John's stuff and made a big point of becoming a big buddy.  He insisted upon being taken to the exact places described in the stories, and I, after tracking them down, have pretty much done the same on my own.

 

    Nah--surely much more so.  I know a lot about Steinbeck Country.  From the south country of To A God Unknown and The Wayward Bus, to Johnny Bear's Loma up north, I have scouted out the scenes of the crime, as 'twere. 

 

    SalinasRiver.jpg (55978 bytes)I thought of Chaplin only recently as I sat contemplating life amongst the sycamores, cottonwoods, and willows at the bend on the Salinas River where Of Mice And Men so pleasantly begins, and so tragically concludes.

 

    I thought of the high cost of destitution.  I thought about fortune, there but for which go you and I.

 

    I thought of dreams and the unkind futilities that all too often overwhelm them.

 

    And I thought of our show's Taelen Thomas reciting in his deep, fine tones, the Robert Burns poem, To A Mouse, "upon turning her up with a plow..."

 

Wee, sleeket, cowrin, tim'rous beastie,...

 

... But, Mousie, thou art no thy lane

In proving foresight may be vain:

The best laid schemes o' mice an' men

    Gang aft agley,

An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain

    For promis'd joy.

 

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OF MICE AND MEN

Larry Hosford

Two men sat beneath the trees whereat the river flows,

Weary migrant bindlestiffs, barley-buckin' 'bo's,

"Tell me George, again," said one, "about the guys like us,

How no one gives a hoot in hell," and George answered thus:

 

"Guys like us we got no home,

Got no fambly, we just got to roam, and roam,

On and on, and 'round and 'round,

Job to job and town to town,

Someday, someday, someday I hope we'll have a home,

A place where we can stay,

But the best laid schemes of mice and men

Are often led astray."

 

Soon the breeze began to blow, the leaves began to shake,

George's friend began to grin, and his heart began to break,

"Tell me how it's gonna be, the way ya done before,"

George rubbed his whiskery jaw and said, "Shore, Lennie, shore."

 

"It will be just like we planned,

We gonna live off the fatta the land, by damn,

Chicks and pigs, and a goat and cow,

Can't you almost see it now?

Someday, someday, someday I hope we'll have a home,

A place where we can stay,

But the best laid schemes of mice and men are often led astray;

The best laid schemes of mice and men are often led astray.

 

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