Thursday, December 13, 2007

Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

O How may I ever express that secret word?
O how can I say He is not like this, and He is like that?
If I say that He is within me, the universe is ashamed:
If I say that He is without me, it is falsehood.
He makes the inner and the outer worlds to be indivisibly one;
The conscious and the unconscious, both are His footstools.
He is neither manifest nor hidden, He is neither revealed nor unrevealed:
There are no words to tell that which He is.

Kabir, from 'Songs Of Kabir', translated by Rabindranath Tagore

Friday, December 07, 2007

Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction

Monday, December 03, 2007

Clair de Lune
Mellifluent moon on the lips of the maddened
The orchards and towns are greedy tonight
The stars appear like the image of bees
Of this luminous honey that offends the vines
For now all sweet in their fall from the sky
Each ray of moonlight’s a ray of honey
Now hid I conceive the sweetest adventure
I fear stings of fire from this Polar bee
that sets these deceptive rays in my hands
And takes its moon-honey to the rose of the winds

Guillaume Apollinaire, translated by AS Kline

Sunday, December 02, 2007

algarve #14
Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction
Blanche: You're married to a madman.
Stella: I wish you'd stop taking it for granted that I'm in something I want to get out of.
Blanche: What you are talking about is desire - just brutal Desire. The name of that rattle-trap streetcar that bangs through the Quarter, up one old narrow street and down another.
Stella: Haven't you ever ridden on that streetcar?
Blanche: It brought me here. Where I'm not wanted and where I'm ashamed to be.
Stella: Don't you think your superior attitude is a little out of place?
Blanche: May I speak plainly?... If you'll forgive me, he's common... He's like an animal. He has an animal's habits. There's even something subhuman about him. Thousands of years have passed him right by, and there he is. Stanley Kowalski, survivor of the Stone Age, bearing the raw meat home from the kill in the jungle. And you - you here waiting for him. Maybe he'll strike you or maybe grunt and kiss you, that's if kisses have been discovered yet...

from 'A Streetcar Named Desire' (1951)

Saturday, December 01, 2007

algarve sunset
Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction

Friday, November 30, 2007

Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction
Two muggers snatched an Austrian woman's handbag, unaware that it contained only a dead rabbit. They struck as Hilda Morgenstein was about to catch a train to the countryside with her daughter to bury the pet. She said: 'They saved us the trip - I told my daughter they were angels and were taking bunny to a better place.'

Thursday, November 29, 2007

algarve #12
Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction
The day has passed delightfully: delight is however a weak term for such transports of pleasure: I have been wandering by myself in a Brazilian forest: amongst the multitude it is hard to say what set of objects is most striking; the general luxuriance of the vegetation bears the victory, the elegance of the grasses, the novelty of the parasitical plants, the beauty of the flowers. — the glossy green of the foliage, all tend to this end. — A most paradoxical mixture of sound & silence pervades the shady parts of the wood, — the noise from the insects is so loud that in the evening it can be heard even in a vessel anchored several hundred yards from the shore. — Yet within the recesses of the forest when in the midst of it a universal stillness appears to reign. — To a person fond of natural history such a day as this brings with it pleasure more acute than he ever may again experience.

Charles Darwin's 'Beagle' Diary, February 29th 1832

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Image copyright CB Editions
loose bricks in a wall
From India to the Balkans there are many legends and ballads telling of women who were walled up alive - troublesome wives, or virgins immured in the foundations of a new building to bring good fortune. In England too, in the guidebooks to medieval castles you can find similar stories. Here, someone has taken pity on the woman and set her free; the bricks hurriedly piled into the opening in the wall will not fool anyone for long, but may give the woman and her rescuer a precious few hours' start.
from Days and Nights in W12 by Jack Robinson

footnote: It's not often the post brings anything of interest these days, but I've had a couple of pleasant surprises recently. Firstly some very nice music and a thought-provoking book from a good friend, then, last week a couple of titles hot off the press of CB Editions, a small publishing venture recently set up by a friend in London. The above is from his own book, modestly described as 'a book of idle speculation, unlikely stories and occasional history lessons prompted by dull photographs of Shepherd’s Bush, London W12'. I enjoyed it greatly, and was touched by the fact that he sent it as a way of thanking me for the pleasure this blog has given him.