On Lambton Quay

two violins by Danny Andreini

two violins by Danny Andreini

On Lambton Quay, Bach
for two violins; small boy
stands captivated.

(16 May 2016)

On an autumn afternoon, unexpectedly, a vivacious counterpoint crosses Lambton Quay and stirs up in me both joy and nostalgia.

What would Barthes think of his Hermès scarf? – The New Yorker

“It is fair to say that there exists in our era a tragic discrepancy between the staggering richness of the visible world and the extreme poverty of our capacity to perceive it.”

word pond

” . . . world blindness, a disease described superbly by Robert Harrison in his book “Gardens: An Essay on the Human Condition”: “It is fair to say that there exists in our era a tragic discrepancy between the staggering richness of the visible world and the extreme poverty of our capacity to perceive it.” The cure, Barthes knew, can be found in the study of literature, photography, and other art forms, optimal training grounds for developing the kind of attention necessary to see what surrounds us.” – Christy Wampole

What would Barthes think of his Hermès scarf? – The New Yorker

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Only with the heart





On ne voit bien qu’avec le cœur. L’essentiel est invisible pour les yeux. ~ One sees clearly only with the heart. The essential is invisible to the eye. (Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, in Le Petit Prince)

This image links to a recent post titled “Reflection” on a WordPress blog called “memyselfandela” … the quote from Le Petit Prince is that blog’s motto.

The passage into silence

Rumi image by Sandra Lesvigne

Rumi image by Sandra Lesvigne




Hear the passage into silence and be that. (Rumi)

Silence is the language of God,
all else is poor translation. (Rumi)

The world is everything that is the case. … Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent. (Ludwig Wittgenstein, in Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus)

It is the party season, and there is a lot of noise.

In recent days, I have become increasingly weary of arrogant and loud-mouthed persons – certain of them not even fuelled by alcohol – sounding off about the meaning of life, the universe, and everything.

Richard Dawkins, for one, would do well to keep silent on matters whereof one cannot speak.


Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī, also known as Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī, and more popularly in the English-speaking world simply as Rumi, was a 13th-century Persian Muslim poet, jurist, theologian, and Sufi mystic. (Wikipedia

The fundamental tendency of matter

Legion (cover)

Legion (cover)

The human brain, three pounds of tissue, held more than a hundred billion brain cells and five hundred trillion synaptic connections. It dreamed and wrote music and Einstein’s equations, it created the language and the geometry and engines that probed the stars, and it cradled a mother asleep through a storm while it woke her at the faintest cry from her child. A computer that could handle all of its functions would cover the surface of the earth.

The hundreds of millions of years of evolution from paramecium to man didn’t solve the mystery, thought Kinderman. The mystery was evolution itself. The fundamental tendency of matter was toward a total disorganization, toward a final state of utter randomness from which the universe would never recover. Each moment its connections were becoming unthreaded as it flung itself headlong into the void in a reckless scattering of itself, impatient for the death of its cooling suns. And yet here was evolution, Kinderman marvelled, a hurricane piling up straw into haystacks, bundles of ever-increasing complexity that denied the very nature of their stuff. Evolution was a theorem written on a leaf that was floating against the direction of the river. A Designer was at work. So what else? It’s as plain as can be. When a man hears hoofbeats in Central Park, he shouldn’t be looking around for zebras. (William Peter Blatty, in Legion [pp104-5]) 


Originally published by Simon & Schuster in 1983, and subsequently turned into what Rinker calls “a more than satisfactory sequel … Exorcist III (which, mercifully, has nothing to do with Exorcist II: The Heretic).” Legion appeared in a Tor paperback edition in 2011 (Tom Doherty Associates, New York).

Your life on fire

rumi flames

as seen on Facebook, 12 September 2012




Set your life on fire.
Seek those who fan your flames.

(Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī – known more popularly in the English-speaking world simply as Rumi)


Looking for something to add to this vivid image, I quickly found the following passage, also from Rumi:

Thinking gives off smoke
to prove the existence of fire.
A mystic sits inside the burning.
There are wonderful shapes in rising smoke
that imagination loves to watch.
But it’s a mistake to leave the fire
for that filmy sight.
Stay here at the flame’s core.

Be natural … be yourself

A great deal of effort seems to go into the quest for the self — or, at least, a great deal of talk centres around the topic.

When you get to thinking about it, though, that’s just us being ourselves!

As John Weeren wrote recently:

no practice is needed
to be yourself
you’re you no matter what

Another thing: life is empty and meaningless …

If you want your life to mean something, it’s entirely up to you.

The only unnatural act is the one that cannot be performed. (William S Burroughs, Alfred Kinsey, et al)

Certainly nothing is unnatural that is not physically impossible. (Richard Brinsley Sheridan) http://www.bartleby.com/100/308.24.html