Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Serique
"Unity Through Intimacy No. 2"

 

L. J. SMITH
____________________

People die ...

Beauty fades ...

Love changes ...

And you will always be alone.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

CLIVE BARKER
Books of Blood
______________________

Everybody is a book of blood; wherever we're opened, we're red.

Monday, June 28, 2021

WILLIAM JAMES
____________________

The stream of thought flows on; but most of its segments fall into the bottomless abyss of oblivion. Of some, no memory survives the instant of their passage. Of others, it is confined to a few moments, hours, or days. Others, again, leave vestiges which are indestructible, and by means of which they may be recalled as long as life endures.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

JOHN STEINBECK
____________________

Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.

Saturday, June 26, 2021

GABRIEL GARCÍA MÁRQUEZ
One Hundred Years of Solitude
____________________

If I knew that today would be the last time I’d see you, I would hug you tight and pray the Lord be the keeper of your soul. If I knew that this would be the last time you pass through this door, I’d embrace you, kiss you, and call you back for one more. If I knew that this would be the last time I would hear your voice, I’d take hold of each word to be able to hear it over and over again. If I knew this is the last time I see you, I’d tell you I love you, and would not just assume foolishly you know it already.

Friday, June 25, 2021

SUSAN SONTAG
“Literature and Freedom”
____________________

One task of literature is to formulate questions and construct counter-statements to the reigning pieties. And even when art is not oppositional, the arts gravitate toward contrariness. Literature is dialogue; responsiveness. Literature might be described as the history of human responsiveness to what is alive and what is moribund as cultures evolve and interact with one another.

Writers can do something to combat the clichés of our separateness, our difference - for writers are makers, not just transmitters, of myths. Literature offers not only myths but countermyths, just as life offers counter-experiences - experiences that confound what you thought you thought, or felt, or believed.

-

“Literature and Freedom” was Susan Sontag’s acceptance speech after being awarded the Friedenspreis, the Peace Prize of the German book trade, in 2003.

Thursday, June 24, 2021

FLANNERY O'CONNOR
“Everything That Rises Must Converge”
____________________

He walked along, saturated in depression, as if in the midst of his martyrdom he had lost his faith.

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

WILLIE NELSON
____________________

I don’t really think about it. I know some day I’ll move on. Everybody does. But I don’t worry about it. I like where I am now. Everything’s fine. And there’s nothing I can do about anything that’s happened. The only thing I have any control over is what’s happening right now. So I don’t worry about a while ago or after a while.

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

KO UN
“Sunlight”
____________________
It’s absolutely inevitable!
So just take a deep breath
and accept this adversity.
But look!
A distinguished visitor deigns to visit
my tiny north-facing cell.
Not the chief making his rounds, no,
but a ray of sunlight as evening falls,
a gleam no bigger than a screwed-up stamp.
A sweetheart fit to go crazy about.
It settles there on the palm of a hand,
warms the toes of a shyly bared foot.
Then as I kneel and, undevoutly,
offer it a dry, parched face to kiss,
in a moment that scrap of sunlight slips away.
After the guest has departed through the bars,
the room feels several times colder and darker.
This military prison special cell
is a photographer’s darkroom.
Without any sunlight I laughed like a fool.
One day it was a coffin holding a corpse.
One day it was altogether the sea.
A wonderful thing!
A few people survive here.
Being alive is a sea
without a single sail in sight.

Monday, June 21, 2021

PAULA SPAN
“Martha, In the Soup”
____________________

Marilyn Scott-Waters turned against Martha Stewart Living around the time Martha advocated glue-gunning fresh pansies onto children’s Easter bonnets:

“I’m thinking, Jesus, you can make your life way more complicated than you need to. My mantra now is Inner Peace Through Lowered Expectations.”

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Rafa Canoba
 

BOB SMITH
____________________

Lesbians can afford to be ruthlessly discriminating when picking their sperm donor. In fact, if all women were as selective as lesbians, we’d have evolved into a race of gods by now.
VEGAN INDIAN COOKING
140 Simple and Healthy Vegan Recipes
____________________

Anupy Singla

Saturday, June 19, 2021

KURT VONNEGUT
From a 2003 speech at the University of Wisconsin - Madison
____________________

I realize that some of you may have come in hopes of hearing tips on how to become a professional writer. I say to you, “If you really want to hurt your parents - and you don’t have the nerve to be a homosexual - the least you can do is go into the arts.” But do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites, standing for absolutely nothing. All they do is show you’ve been to college.

Friday, June 18, 2021

HỒ XUÂN HƯƠNG TRADITION
“A Hermaphrodite”
____________________

Which squabble among twelve midwives
Caused them to throw your love-thing away?
To hell with that squeaking mouse.
To hell with that droning wasp.
Who knows if it’s smooth or bumpy?
Who can tell if it’s stem or bud?
Whatever it is, it must do.
You’ll never be called a slut.

Thursday, June 17, 2021

WOLE SOYINKA
"Your Logic Frightens Me, Mandela"
____________________

Your logic frightens me, Mandela,
Your logic frightens me. Those years
Of dreams, of time accelerated in
Visionary hopes, of savouring the task anew,
The call, the tempo primed
To burst in supernovae round a “brave new world”!
Then stillness. Silence. The world closes round
Your sole reality; the rest is… dreams?

Your logic frightens me.
How coldly you disdain legerdemains!
“Open Sesame” and—two decades’ rust on hinges
Peels at touch of a conjurer’s wand?
White magic, ivory-topped black magic wand,
One moment wand, one moment riot club
Electric cattle prod and club or sjambok
Tearing flesh and spilling blood and brain?

This bag of tricks, whose silk streamers
Turn knotted cords to crush dark temples?
A rabbit punch sneaked beneath the rabbit?
Doves metamorphosed in milk-white talons?
Not for you the olive branch that sprouts
Gun muzzles, barbed-wire garlands, tangled thorns
To wreathe the brows of black, unwilling christs.

Your patience grows inhuman, Mandela.
Do you grow food? Do you make friends
Of mice and lizards? Measure the growth of grass
For time’s unhurried pace?
Are you now the crossword puzzle expert?

Chess? Ah, no! Subversion lurks among
Chess pieces. Structured clash of black and white,
Equal ranged and paced? An equal board? No!
Not on Robben Island. Checkers? Bad to worse
That game has no respect for class or king-serf
Ordered universe. So, scrabble?

Monopoly? Now, that…! You know
The game’s modalities, so do they.
Come collection time, the cards read “White Only”
In the Community Chest. Like a gambler’s coin
Both sides heads or tails, the ’Chance’ cards read:
GO TO GAOL. GO STRAIGHT TO GAOL. DO NOT PASS ’GO’.
DO NOT COLLECT A HUNDREDTH RAND. Fishes feast,
I think, on those who sought to by-pass ‘GO’
On Robben Island.

Your logic frightens me Mandela, your logic
Humbles me. Do you tame geckos?
Do grasshoppers break your silences?
Bats’ radar pips pinpoint your statuesque
Gaze transcending distances at will?

Do moths break wing
Against a light-bulb’s fitful glow
That brings no searing illumination?
Your sight shifts from moth to bulb,
Rests on its pulse-glow fluctuations—
Are kin feelings roused by a broken arc
Of tungsten trapped in vacuum?

Your pulse, I know, has slowed with earth’s
Phlegmatic turns. I know your blood
Sagely warms and cools with seasons,
Responds to the lightest breeze
Yet scorns to race with winds (or hurricanes)
That threaten change on tortoise pads.

Is our world light-years away, Mandela?
Lost in visions of that dare supreme
Against a dire supremacy of race,
What brings you back to earth? The night-guard’s
Inhuman tramp? A sodden eye transgressing through
The Judas hole? Tell me Mandela,
That guard, is he your prisoner?

Your bounty threatens me, Mandela, that taut
Drum-skin of your heart on which our millions
Dance. I fear we latch, fat leeches
On your veins. Our daily imprecisions
Dull keen edges of your will.

Compromises deplete your act’s repletion—
Feeding will-voided stomachs of a continent,
What will be left of you, Mandela?

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

A. ABRAHAM
____________________

Don’t ever
let anyone
oppress you,
Stand up
for your
Fucking
Rights!
life is too short only if you are having fun
but way too fucking long if you are suffering.
don’t live in fear,
only fear to lose self-respect
and your right to be free.
claim what is rightfully yours and
please be proud of yourself,
be humble and
learn,
keep learning,
learn some more,
strengthen your mind
and love in abundance. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

HAROLD PINTER
Moonlight
____________________

FRED
You were writing poems when you were a mere child, isn’t that right?

JAKE
I was writing poems before I could read.

FRED
Listen. I happen to know that you were writing poems before you could speak.

JAKE
Listen! I was writing poems before I was born.

FRED
So you would say you were the real thing?

JAKE
The authentic article.

FRED
Never knowingly undersold.

JAKE

Precisely. 

Monday, June 14, 2021

GUY DAVENPORT
____________________

When a man owns a lion, a lion owns a man. This is the thing about technology. It owns us.

Sunday, June 13, 2021

ELIAS CANETTI
____________________

The painfulness of the stars since we started trying to actually reach them. They are no longer the same stars. 

Now covered with the leprosy of death, they give off a different light.

Saturday, June 12, 2021

ANNE SEXTON
"The Poet of Ignorance"
____________________

Perhaps the earth is floating,
I do not know.
Perhaps the stars are little paper cutups
made by some giant scissors,
I do not know.
Perhaps the moon is a frozen tear,
I do not know.
Perhaps God is only a deep voice,
heard by the deaf,
I do not know.

Perhaps I am no one.
True, I have a body
and I cannot escape from it.
I would like to fly out of my head,
but that is out of the question.
It is written on the tablet of destiny
that I am stuck here in this human form.
That being the case
I would like to call attention to my problem.

There is an animal inside me,
clutching fast to my heart,
a huge crab.
The doctors of Boston
have thrown up their hands.
They have tried scalpels,
needles, poison gases and the like.
The crab remains.
It is a great weight.
I try to forget it, go about my business,

cook the broccoli, open and shut books,
brush my teeth and tie my shoes.
I have tried prayer
but as I pray the crab grips harder
and the pain enlarges.

I had a dream once,
perhaps it was a dream,
that the crab was my ignorance of God.
But who am I to believe in dreams?

Friday, June 11, 2021

GARY SOTO
"Graciela"
____________________

Wedding night
Graciela bled lightly—
But enough to stain his thighs—
And left an alphabet
Of teethmarks on his arm.
At this, he was happy.
They drank mescal
In bed like the rich
And smoked cigarettes.
She asleep
And the bottle empty, he hid
A few coins in her left shoe,
Earrings in the right.
They worked long hours
Hoeing crooked rows of maize.
Evenings she wove rugs
And embroidered curtains
To market in Taxco.
In short they lived well.
However in the 7th month
With child, her belly
Rising like a portion of the sun,
Something knotted inside her.
The ribs ached.
A fever climbed like incense.
Manuel summoned the Parterna
And though she burned pepper,
And tied belts around
The stretched belly,
The child did not ease out.
Days later she turned
Onto her belly
And between her legs
Unraveled a spine of blood.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

[Photographer unknown to me.] 

RANDALL JARRELL
"A War"
____________________

There set out, slowly, for a Different World,

At four, on winter mornings, different legs…
You can’t break eggs without making an omelette
—That’s what they tell the eggs.

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

BRET EASTON ELLIS
American Psycho
____________________

Is evil something you are? Or is it something you do?
SIMPLY PHO
A Complete Course in Preparing Authentic Vietnamese Meals at Home
____________________

Helen Le

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

THE SUN

____________________

Issue 546
June 2021 


WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
Macbeth
____________________

2nd Witch:
By the pricking of my thumbs,
Something wicked this way comes. 

          [Knocking]

Open locks,
Whoever knocks!

          [Enter Macbeth]

Macbeth:
How now, you secret, black, and midnight hags!
What is't you do?

Monday, June 7, 2021

DORIS LESING
The Golden Notebook
____________________

Art is the mirror of our betrayed ideals.

Sunday, June 6, 2021

JOE HILL
____________________

All the schemes of the devil were nothing compared to what man could think up.

Saturday, June 5, 2021

AMY SISKIND
____________________

Experts in authoritarianism advise to keep a list of things subtly changing around you, so you’ll remember.

Friday, June 4, 2021

H. P. LOVECRAFT
____________________

There are horrors beyond life’s edge that we do not suspect, and once in a while man’s evil prying calls them just within our range.

Thursday, June 3, 2021

ELIAS CANETTI
____________________

What will become of the images of the dead that you hold within your eyes? How will you leave those behind?

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

CAMERON JACE
Snow White Sorrow
____________________

Stare at the dark too long and you will eventually see what isn’t there.

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

HỒ XUÂN HƯƠNG TRADITION
“Ba Doi Gorge”
____________________

A gorge, a gorge, and yet, the same old gorge.
Praise to whoever has gouged out this scene:
A lurid cave with a stubby arch,
And rich green boulders covered with algae.
Now the stiff wind blows, shaking pine branches.
Dew-drops dripping from willow leaves.
You who are virtuous, or saintly, who hasn’t tried,
Even with weak knees, exhausted feet, to mount it?
ANAÏS NIN
The Diaries of Anaïs Nin, Vol 2 (1934-1939)

Man today is like a tree that is withering at the roots. And most women painted and wrote nothing but imitations of phalluses. The world was filled with phalluses, like totem poles, and no womb anywhere. 

I must go the opposite way from Proust who found eternal moments in creation. I must find them in life. My work must be the closest to the life flow. I must install myself inside of the seed, growth, mysteries. I must prove the possibility of instantaneous, immediate, spontaneous art. My art must be like a miracle. Before it goes through the conduits of the brain and becomes an abstraction, a fiction, a lie. 

It must be for woman, more like a personified ancient ritual, where every spiritual thought was made visible, enacted, represented.