November's This, That & Other

St John Academy

“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”

~ G.K. Chesterton

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Friday Greetings

November 9, 2018



Jeffrey P. Presberg


Saint John Academy

What's Up...Next Week and so

November happenings

So Others Might Eat (SOME): Thank you so much for your wonderful generosity with the Thanksgiving Basket drive sign-up that was sent out on Monday. If you would like to donate in addition to your designated item(s) please send cash or a check made out to SOME in the amount of $15.00 and we will deliver it to the organization. We are asking that items be brought in by THIS Wednesday, November 14. We need time to assemble the boxes. If you would like to volunteer to drive the items to SOME, please contact

VIRTUS Session to be held at SJA on Saturday, November 17th at 9:00 a.m. Please sign up for the session at space is LIMITED. Any parent who wishes to chaperone a field trip or volunteer in the classroom MUST attend a VIRTUS session. In addition parents need to also complete a package of forms from the Office of Child Protection. Please contact Mrs. Escudero with any questions or concerns at

SJA’s Eagle Ink Quarterly publication Club is here! Students in grades 6-8 are welcome and encouraged to join our club. The members will create a quarterly edition of our SJA journal. The club will meet on Thursdays after school 3:05-4:05 p.m. Click below for the permission slip.

ONLINE TURKEY AUCTION - Master smoker and chef extraordinaire Fr. Pollard and other famous SJA chefs will make your Thanksgiving Turkey for you. Stay tuned to our This, That, & Other for details.

Grandparents Day will take place on Tuesday November 20th at 10:00 a.m. All grandparents and families are invited. Grandparents are welcome to visit their granchild’s classroom after our program.

St. John's CYO Basketball registration is open for grades 4th-8th. All of the information regarding practices and season duration can be found on the CYO website. Teams usually practice 1 night per week and have games on Saturday or Sunday. All that is needed to sign up is to go to . If a family doesn’t have a CYO account they will be prompted to set up a family account and then register. If the team is already full and the coach has closed registration it will not be possible to register. In that case the family should inform CYO and they will see about forming a second team in that grade.

Another kind of song with Cake

SOUL CAKE English folk song with medieval roots, performed when children and others went "souling" on All Hallows Eve, dressed in a variety of imaginative costumes. In return for the delicious cakes, the "soulers"--later called "trick-or-treaters"--prayed for the loved ones who had died from the cake giver's family--something we can still do! (The past soulers also traditionally went a' souling for such cakes during Christmas...echoes of which you'll find in Sting's version of the song).


A soul! a soul! a soul-cake!
Please good Missus, a soul-cake!
An apple, a pear, a plum or a cherry,
Any good thing to make us all merry,
One for Peter, two for Paul,
Three for Him who made us all.

God bless the master of this house,
The misteress also,
And all the little children
That round the table grow.
Likewise young men and maidens,
Your cattle and your store;
And all that dwell within your gates,
We wish you ten times more


Down into the cellar,
And see what you can find,
If your barrels are not empty,
We hope you will prove kind.
(We hope you will prove kind,
With your apples and strong beer,
And we'll come no more a-souling
Till this time next year.)


The lanes are very dirty,
My shoes are very thin,
I've got a little pocket
To put a penny in.
If you haven't got a penny
A ha'penny will do;
If you haven't got a ha'penny,
It's God bless you!

A soul! a soul! a soul-cake!
Please good Missus, a soul-cake!
An apple, a pear, a plum or a cherry,
Any good thing to make us all merry,
One for Peter, two for Paul,
Three for Him who made us all.

Rediscover and Share a Couple of American Film Masters: Capra & Hitchcock



The Screwball Comedy: Arsenic & Old Lace (The Coen Bros are current masters of that genre---Raising Arizona, Oh Brother Where Art Thou?)


The first film to win all 4 major academy awards: It Happened One Night


39 Steps...Rebecca...Rear Window...North by just name a few...
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Because I could not stop for Death


Because I could not stop for Death –

He kindly stopped for me –

The Carriage held but just Ourselves –

And Immortality.

We slowly drove – He knew no haste

And I had put away

My labor and my leisure too,

For His Civility –

We passed the School, where Children strove

At Recess – in the Ring –

We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain –

We passed the Setting Sun –

Or rather – He passed us –

The Dews drew quivering and chill –

For only Gossamer, my Gown –

My Tippet – only Tulle –

We paused before a House that seemed

A Swelling of the Ground –

The Roof was scarcely visible –

The Cornice – in the Ground –

Since then – ‘tis Centuries – and yet

Feels shorter than the Day

I first surmised the Horses’ Heads

Were toward Eternity –



for Harry Caudill

In the place that is my own place, whose earth

I am shaped in and must bear, there is an old tree growing,

a great sycamore that is a wondrous healer of itself.

Fences have been tied to it, nails driven into it,

hacks and whittles cut in it, the lightning has burned it.

There is no year it has flourished in

that has not harmed it. There is a hollow in it

that is its death, though its living brims whitely

at the lip of the darkness and flows outward.

Over all its scars has come the seamless white

of the bark. It bears the gnarls of its history

healed over. It has risen to a strange perfection

in the warp and bending of its long growth.

It has gathered all accidents into its purpose.

It has become the intention and radiance of its dark fate.

It is a fact, sublime, mystical and unassailable.

In all the country there is no other like it.

I recognize in it a principle, an indwelling

the same as itself, and greater, that I would be ruled by.

I see that it stands in its place, and feeds upon it,

and is fed upon, and is native, and maker.

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You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.

~ Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)

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Top illustration by NC Wyeth

Bottom Painting: On the Saco by Albert Bierstadt