NauenThen

James Russell & Jim Lowell

November 17, 2013

Tags: James Russell Lowell

Soulful poet
Our milkman when I was very little was named Jim Lowell. He would give us rides in his truck, one of those old milk trucks with no doors and no front seats. He would creep along at 1 mph for about 10 feet. Nothing I relished more than standing up in a moving vehicle.

So it was not at all surprising to me that my elementary school, James Russell Lowell School, was named after a hero like him.

What was surprising was finding out that James Russell Lowell was someone else entirely. I don’t recall spending any time on the poet at Lowell School, except to memorize his most famous line: “And what is so rare as a day in June? Then, if ever, come perfect days”—lines that I still repeat automatically on every lovely late spring day. (more…)