By Richard Lemm
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Additional resources for Milton Acorn: In Love and Anger
When Spring came our folks were always poor. Describing wicked men is easy... In good men you've got to look for a flaw; otherwise It's painting a picture without shadows. Daddy didn't drink, smoked sparely, Didn't save his love, only his money; Spoke with such a clear modulation He could be heard from poopdeck to prow, masthead to wheel. " (Selected 164-65) Here, Acorn mythologizes his grandfather, creating out of family lore and his own imaginative needs an iconic character with multiple value.
It was not uncommon for these tensions to surface in violent fashion. Electoral riots were endemic in a deeply divided society where open voting and district by district polling was the rule. The Belfast Riots of 1847 are merely the best known of these affairs: an admixture of ethnic, religious, and political tensions in the context of the movement for responsible government, the Belfast violence took several lives and left scores wounded" (Robb 74-75). T. Holman, takes a more circumspect approach to these riots, downplaying the occurrence of violent strife in Island history: "If it is difficult to explain just what happened at the Belfast riot it is even more difficult to explain why.
Bath time was my first experience of the assembly line. Mother washed and Dad dried.... This might seem like a step down the ladder to many, but to us children the place was a beautiful all-around pleasure resort. We had wonderful snowbanks in the winter for skiing and tumbling on, and a skating pond across the road. Inkerman Shore on the river [North River, which flows into Charlottetown Harbour] was just a couple child leaps away. This provided marvellous swimming, cliff-climbing, clam-digging, and shell-hunting all summer long" ("The Assembly Line").