Sunday, May 02, 2004

The Dark Materials debate: life, God, the universe...... author Philip Pullman in discussion with Rowan Williams, archbishop of Canterbury...

Pullman: "The word that covers some of these early creation narratives is gnostic - the Gnostic heresy, as it became once Christianity was sort of defined. The idea that the world we live in, the physical universe is actually a false thing, made by a false God, and the true God, our true home, our true spiritual home is infinitely distant, far off, a long, long way away from that. This sense is something we find a lot of in popular culture, don't you think? The X-Files, you know - 'the truth is out there'. The Matrix.

Everything we see is the false creation of some wicked power that, as you say, is trying to pull the wool over our eyes, and there are many others. Can I just ask you a question for a minute? What do you put this down to? The great salience of gnostic feelings, gnostic sentiments and ways of thinking in our present world? What's the source of that, do you think?"

posted at 7:54 PM

from Akhmatova's "I Wrung My Hands..."

I'll never forget. He went out, reeling;
his mouth was twisted, desolate...
I ran downstairs, not touching the banisters,
and followed him as far as the gate.

And shouted, choking: "I meant it all
in fun. Don't leave me, or I'll die of pain."
He smiled at me -- oh so calmly, terribly --
and said "Why don't you get out of the rain?"

one of my students finds this evocative of Gone With the Wind... wonders if anna had just seen scarlet and rhett... of course, it's just another scrap from a lover's discourse... "making scenes"... now...

i wonder how many other relevantly irrelevant relevancies are lurking out there...
posted at 4:56 PM

the Ingredient... offers some kristeva...

"Poetry has always been able to utter the will of free will, coming back to the memory of words and extracting its sense and time. In periods that we vaguely sense to be in decline or at least in suspension, questioning remains the only possible thought: an indication of life that is simply alive."

... thanks!
posted at 4:30 PM

good interview with... Jimmy Carter on far-right Christian errors (via the coffee sutras)

First of all, we worship the prince of peace, not war. And those of us who have advocated for the resolution of international conflict in a peaceful fashion are looked upon as being unpatriotic, branded that way by right-wing religious groups, the Bush administration, and other Republicans.

Secondly, Christ was committed to compassion for the most destitute, poor, needy, and forgotten people in our society. Today there is a stark difference [between conservative ideology and Christian teaching] because most of the people most strongly committed to the Republican philosophy have adopted the proposition that help for the rich is the best way to help even poor people (by letting some of the financial benefits drip down to those most deeply in need). I would say there has been a schism drawn ­ on theology and practical politics and economics between the two groups.

posted at 9:56 AM


Saturday, May 01, 2004

To me the word "Tilth" is a one-word haiku.
posted at 8:12 PM

another journal entry... tulips...

posted at 3:28 PM

why does sonic youth/daydream nation... a thing of 1988... sound so perfect today... when i find us in the state the news the billboards the war... play it louder... it helps... a most excellent soundtrack for our current mad movie... broken daze
posted at 10:47 AM

Sir Albert Howard's AGRICULTURAL TESTAMENT: Introduction

The maintenance of the fertility of the soil is the first condition of any permanent system of agriculture. In the ordinary processes of crop production fertility is steadily lost: its continuous restoration by means of manuring and soil management is therefore imperative.
posted at 10:10 AM


Friday, April 30, 2004

from L a u g h i n g ~ K n e e s

It seems the news of the treatment of the hostages has gone worldwide. And without understanding how Japanese society works their treatment must seem bizarre and cruel. I'm not sure it is out of cruelty that the Japanese are reacting this way... in great part it is a reaction to having been exposed so starkly in the international media (Japanese are a people who in general shun the limelight) and to the sense of anger that people anywhere often feel after having been greatly frightened. If the hostages had actually been killed, I don't know what would have happened in Japan. Something unspoken would have snapped.
posted at 11:06 PM

Time-Travel Guide Book to the 1890s (via fait accompli)
posted at 10:56 PM

new journal entry... up... mostly pictures
posted at 10:06 PM

Lowell's Collected Poems... reviewed

By the time of his death at 60, Robert Lowell had fashioned a poetic career that was disconcertingly intertwined with his life.
posted at 9:45 PM

Glossaries & Dictionaries on all subjects from (via language hat)
posted at 11:21 AM


Thursday, April 29, 2004

Speak, Bird, Speak Again: Palestinian Arab Folktales (via language hat)
posted at 8:32 PM

listening to duke ellington... on his birthday... the blanton-webster band... 1940-42... then low... the curtain hits the cast...
posted at 8:10 PM

To Alice B. Toklas

Do you really think I would yes I would and
I do love all you with all me.
Do you really think I could, yes I could
yes I would love all you with all me.
Do you really think I should yes I should
love all you with all me yes I should
yes I could yes I would.
Do you really think I do love all you
with all me yes I do love all you with all
me And bless my baby.

Gertrude Stein

posted at 8:01 PM

Dabora | A Victorian Salon Art Gallery... and ever stranger...
posted at 3:13 PM

Timothy Cummings Spot Portraits... mysterious... creepy... or is that just me...
posted at 3:04 PM

Blogged: 'The War President' (via plep)

'The War President' photo-mosaic is composed of the faces of American service men and women who have died in Iraq.
posted at 1:20 PM

they burned the back field where we walk... you can see where it once was a farm...they didn't burn it completely but in splotches... must a have scared the fauna too
posted at 12:59 PM

Great Purge

The trials, however, were only a minor part of the purges, and one of their purposes was to divert the world's attention from what was going on in the rest of the country. Nearly a million people were executed by firing squad in the period from 1936 to 1939, and millions more were arrested and sent off to prison or labour camps, where many of them died.
Estimates on the total death toll vary greatly; some historians have argued that the death toll of the Purges reached as high as 20 million.

posted at 11:24 AM

Stalin's purges

The secret police also terrorized the general populace, with untold numbers of common people punished after spurious accusations. By the time the purges subsided in 1938, millions of Soviet leaders, officials, and other citizens had been executed, imprisoned, or exiled.
posted at 11:20 AM

Great Purges

In September, 1936, Stalin appointed Nikolai Yezhov as head of the NKVD, the Communist Secret Police. Yezhov quickly arranged the arrest of all the leading political figures in the Soviet Union who were critical of Stalin.
posted at 11:18 AM


Wednesday, April 28, 2004

from "Death's Door" by Thom Gunn

Of course the dead outnumber us
-- How their recruiting armies grow!
My mother archaic now as Minos,
She who died forty years ago.

After their processing, the dead
Sit down in groups and watch TV,
In which they must be interested
For on it they see you and me.
posted at 9:41 PM

Thom Gunn has died... sad to read this at dumbfoundry...

Interpretation of the Bible in the Church

L'OSSERVATORE ROMANO Weekly edition in english 7 January 2004

People are becoming more and more aware of the need for a new international order that will make the most of the experience of the United Nations Organization and the results it has achieved in recent years: an order that can provide satisfactory solutions to the problems of our day, founded on the dignity of the human person, on an integral development of society, on solidarity between the rich and poor countries and on sharing resources and the extraordinary results of scientific and technological progress.

Solipsism and the Problem of Other Minds [Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy]

To put the matter somewhat differently, if the relationship between having a human body, on the one hand, and having a certain kind of mental life, on the other hand, is as contingent as the Cartesian account of mind implies, then it should be equally easy - or equally difficult - for me to conceive of a table as being in pain as it is for me to conceive of another person as being in pain. The point, of course, is that this is not so: the supposition that a table might experience pain is a totally meaningless one, whereas the ascription of pain to other human beings, and indeed to animals which, in their physical characteristics and/or behavioural capabilities, resemble human beings, is something which even very young children find unproblematic.

Part, however, of the aim of poetry is to "make time behave." It is largely what the line is "for."


Tuesday, April 27, 2004


consider... The Scourge of Agriculture: Atlantic Monthly interviews Richard Manning...

While arguments against agriculture have gained steam in the past few decades, they have centered mostly on the debate over twentieth-century developments like the Green Revolution or genetically modified crops. Manning's scope is much broader than that, and extends to the very origin of agricultural societies. He argues that a major change took place among humans when we discovered agriculture-and began to move toward an ethos of dominance based on the practice of domestication.



it's not

a book

in hand...




find it


this from Calvino's Invisible Cities...

It also happens that, if you move along Marozia's compact walls, when you least expect it, you see a crack open and a different city appear. Then, an instant later, it has already vanished. Perhaps everything lies in knowing what words to speak, what actions to perform, and in what order and rhythm; or else someone's gaze, answer, gesture is enough; it is enough for someone to do something for the sheer pleasure of doing it, and for his pleasure to become the pleasure of others: at that moment, all spaces change, all heights, distances; the city is transfigured, becomes crystalline, transparent as a dragonfly. But everything must happen as if by chance, without attaching too much importance to it, without insisting that you are performing a decisive operation, remembering clearly that any moment the old Marozia will return and solder its ceiling of stone, cobwebs, and mold over all heads.


Monday, April 26, 2004

Dear Miss Monroe... (a delight from pelican dreaming)

Photos of Military Coffins (Battlefield and Astronaut Fatalaties) at Dover Air Force Base

on words pictures politics war death cool spin victimhood...
{lime tree}: Richard Brautigan, "Star-Spangled Nails"

today we submitted ourselves to the background check... for felonious pasts and malicious deeds... to protect the children... which is always a good idea... but this is not the world i'd meant to have... by now... i didn't mean it... of course... but somebody did...

I can only land a plane in English (new poems from amy king)


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