Ahhh!: A Tribute to Brother Blue and Ruth Edmonds Hill

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This book is a celebration of an extraordinary storyteller. Brother Blue is a master of the spoken word, shaping it improvisationally into rhymes and rhythms as a jazz musician bends notes. Blue has birthed a thousand phrases, each uniquely his own. Yet when we sought a title for this book, there was only one really possibility: Ahhhh, Blue's wordless exhalation of awe and wonder--an assertion of the ineffable.

Is it odd that a book about a storyteller, a limber magician of ...

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2003-09-01 Paperback Good Clean text, strong binding, moderate wear.

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Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. 100% Money Back Guarantee. Shipped to over one million happy customers. Your purchase benefits world literacy!

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2003 Trade paperback Very good. Trade paperback (US). Glued binding. 378 p. Contains: Illustrations. Audience: General/trade.

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2003 Softcover Near Fine 0938756672. Light scratching to covers.; Signed on title page by Brother Blue and Ruth, noted storytellers. B/w photos.; 8vo 8"-9" tall; 378 pp.

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Overview

This book is a celebration of an extraordinary storyteller. Brother Blue is a master of the spoken word, shaping it improvisationally into rhymes and rhythms as a jazz musician bends notes. Blue has birthed a thousand phrases, each uniquely his own. Yet when we sought a title for this book, there was only one really possibility: Ahhhh, Blue's wordless exhalation of awe and wonder--an assertion of the ineffable.

Is it odd that a book about a storyteller, a limber magician of language, should take a title of dumbstruck speechlessness? Not for those who know Brother Blue. The word is his (if word it is). It is perhaps his favorite word. It is, perhaps, the title of his favorite story, the tale of a crawling caterpillar awestruck by the sight of a butterfly and a vision of his own transformation. Ahhhh is the statement, endlessly repeated, that "words don't get it," that what is most essential and beautiful and holy can no more be captured in words than a butterfly.

Brother Blue's other name is Dr. Hugh Morgan Hill, and he is holder of multiple graduate degrees from prestigious universities. But Brother Blue is not a stage name, a persona to be put on and taken off. Blue is always Blue. Whether bedecked in balloons and ribbons, with blue beret and butterflies pinned to clothes and painted on palms, or dressed in simple blue from hat to shoes, Brother Blue is always himself. His passionate commitment to telling the stories that will transform the planet, and an equal or greater commitment to listen, really listen, to every single person's story is continual. It is who he is. Brother Blue knows that stories are bread for the soul, and must be taken where they are most needed. He, famously, can be found storytelling to passersby on the streets of Harvard Square. But he is equally likely to be spinning his tales on festival stages, in pulpits, and academic lecture halls; on radio and television; and in hospitals, shelters, nursing homes, prisons, and preschools.

Wherever Brother Blue is found, Ruth will not be far away. His constant companion, helpmate, and muse, Ruth is as pragmatic as Blue is extravagant, as quietly calm as Blue is verbosely enraptured. Brief acquaintance makes it clear that Ruth grounds Blue, keeps him tethered to this world of time and schedules, or eating and sleeping. The longer you know them, the more Ruth grows in your estimation. Ruth Edmonds Hill is far more than Blue's beloved wife and indispensable support; she is a fully equal co-creator of the spiritual and artistic endeavor that is their lifework. She is also a noted scholar, a respected authority in the field of oral history, dedicated to collecting and preserving the stories of women's lives, stories that far too often have fallen through the cracks of established history.

So what you hold in your hands is a selection cobbled together from this great outpouring of praise for the Praise-singer, of love for the Lovers. We stand in awe and amazement, wonder and disbelief (as Blue is fond of saying), and are non-plussed. And having reached the point where words of praise and of thanks don't reach high enough or deep enough, we raise our hands and say... Ahhhh.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780938756675
  • Publisher: Yellow Moon Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2003
  • Pages: 378
  • Product dimensions: 5.84 (w) x 8.94 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface xv
Invocation (Latinate: "to put into voice") 1
Brother Blue's Application Statement 3
Tribute from Africa In April 4
Brother Blue 5
Improvising with Blue 6
Eight Comments on Brother Blue 8
A Letter to Blue Light 12
Brother Blue, Way Down in the Magic 14
Brother Blue / The Storyteller 17
The Butterfly Man 19
The Bird: A Story for Blue 21
Ruth and Blue 25
My Initiation 26
The Road Taken With Blue 27
The Teacher 29
A Tribute to Brother Blue (a.k.a. Hugh Hill and Ruth Hill) 31
Zusia 33
A Thank You for You 35
David's Birthday 37
Knee Deep in Story 39
Dear Brother Blue and Ruth: Soul Mates of Enlightenment 42
The Importance of a Name 44
Brother Blue 47
A Heron Feather and a Rainbow for Brother Blue 49
Reflections on our Times with Brother Blue and Ruth 52
Tribute for Ruth and Blue 54
A Bottle of Blue Sunshine 55
Learning to Fly With the Bluest of Ease 56
Miles Away, or Dr. Seuss on the Loose 59
Words 61
When Blue's On 63
Uniting Nations 64
Brother Blue in Memphis 66
Sleepers Awake! 68
Standing at the Crossroads 69
Listening 72
Blue Ribbons 73
The Listener 74
A Preacher and a Prophet 76
Blue Man 77
A Note for Brother Blue 79
The Whirling Vortex 80
Ruth's Gifts 81
Dr. Dave Colling 82
Tribute to Brother Blue 83
Brother Blue 85
The Day of Brother Blue's Doctoral Dance 86
For Brother Blue 88
Threshold 89
Hugh "Brother Blue" Hill 93
Papageno in Blue Feathers 97
Professor Hill 100
The Journey to Cambridge 102
One of the Wisest Men 104
Thanks for the Awakening 105
Ahhhhh! 107
Black-Eyed-Susan Filled Day 110
A Hatful of Peas 111
Blue Rainbow 113
The Teller, the Told, and the Tale 115
There's Beauty in You and Me 116
A Liberating Example 118
From NABS with Honor and Love 120
The Sounds and the Colors Dance in the Evening Air: Music & Brother Blue 121
They Also Serve... 123
Quilting Brother Blue 125
When I Think of Brother Blue 127
Out of the Blue: An Ode to Brother Blue & Ruth 130
A Song for Blue 131
Blue's Oral History 133
Toes 135
Coyote in Ribbons 137
The Gift of Blue and Ruth 139
A Musical Reminiscence of Blue 140
Blue Time 142
A Carrier of Stories 143
The Parable of Two Frogs 145
An Angel of Poetry and Hipdom 147
In Metamorphosis... 150
Point of Contact 155
The Voice, the Earth, the Spirits, the Blues 156
Brother Blue 1969: Out the Window 158
Blue and Ruth 160
To Blue with Love 162
Brother Blue and Ruth Too! 164
Town Meeting on the Year 2000 165
Food for the Soul 166
Blue's Prayer 167
Breathing Together 169
Uses of Air 172
True Blue 173
Flying 177
God Is Blue 179
Brother Blue at Emmanuel 181
Brother Blue Praise Song 182
Squirmin' with Blue 186
Blue and Ruth, On and Off Stage 188
Around the Table with Blue and Ruth 189
The World's First Kiss 194
Blue Thoughts 195
Jazz Storyteller 197
The Blue King 199
Brother Blue Memories 202
Children's Hospital at Christmas 205
Lay Down Your Life! 206
Son of Blue 209
Blue is Always Blue 212
Mockingbird Cake for a Blue Monarch 214
Butterfly 216
Never a Discouraging Word 218
Tell Stories! 219
To Brother Blue and Sister Ruth 222
Serendipity 223
Toast To Brother Blue 224
In His Heart, Like Butterflies 227
The Storyteller 228
Seeds of the Universe 231
Dedication 234
Foolnanigans 235
The Dalai Lama of Cambridge 236
How Brother Blue Changed My Life 237
Following Blue 239
For Brother Blue 242
Three Poems in Japanese 242
From Black and White to Color 244
Sixteen Seconds 247
Balloons for Sam 249
Copies and Originals in Plato's Parmenides 250
Hugh Hill and Brother Blue 252
The William Blake of Storytelling 254
The Timely Messenger 256
The Importance of Entrances 257
The Blue Preacher 259
Hey Mister Parent, Who Is That Dude? 263
Picture of a Father 265
A Butterfly Tribute 266
Colorful Kaleidoscope 270
The Man Above and Below Butterflies 272
The Blue Man 273
Ruth and Hugh and Brother Blue 274
The Butterfly and the Bee 276
Me and Brother Blue 277
Wedding Anniversary 279
The Brick 281
Brother Blue 286
Caro "Fratello Azzuro" 289
Merlin 290
Blue Priest 294
An Instant Occasion 295
Without Any Rehearsal 297
My Turn 298
The Honest Current of Life 299
Sheetmusic: "Brother Blue" 300
Brother Blue Joins The Circus! 301
Blue and Lady Blue 303
A Dance of Kalimbas, Blue, and Buckminster Fuller 305
Praise That Wakes the Heart 308
That's Only Stories... 311
Before You Were "Brother Blue" 313
Old Friends 315
Brother Blue 316
Blue, Brother Blue 323
Every Colored Girl Needs 324
The Sound of Bells 327
Praise for This Life 329
A Song for a Neighbor 331
A Song for Brother Blue 332
For Brother Blue 334
Brother Blue: Reflections and a Poem 336
To "B" or Not to "B" 338
A Tribute to Sister Ruth 339
To Dance as Story 342
Telling Without a Net: Brother Blue's Way 345
Prior to Becoming a State Legislator 347
Letter Love from Beauty to the Beast 349
For Brother Blue and Sister Ruth 350
Brother Blue 352
Truth is a Form of Love 354
Ah, Yes! We Know You Well 357
Getting It All Together 359
Something Worth Hearing 360
Massachusetts House of Representatives Resolution 363
Brother Blue 364
Praising Blue 366
There is a Color 369
Blue's Blessing, Our New Religion 370
The Jazz Cows 372
A Living Example of What the World Should Be Like 376
Biographies of Graphic Contributors 377
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