Thursday, March 31, 2005

I found this piece of Elementary School art ...
Superdog by Robin S Park-Doob
'Superdog' by Robin S Park-Doob

Robin is also the creator of The Mysterious Bathroom and other works ...
The Museum of Online Museums
thanks to paquito enzo for the link
and I predict that anyone who visits every site on this page will go insane

if you enjoyed visiting moom please convey your thanks to enzo via the comments. thankyou
Vicar: Come in.
Kirkham: I wondered if I could have a word with you for a moment.
Vicar: By all means ... by all means. Do sit down.
Kirkham: Thank you.
Vicar: Now then, a glass of sherry?
Kirkham: No... no thank you...
Vicar: (getting a bottle from the cupboard) Are you sure? I'm going to.
Kirkham: Well, if you're having some, yes then, perhaps, vicar.
Vicar: (slightly taken aback) Oh... well there's only just enough for me.
Kirkham: Well in that case I won't, don't worry.
Vicar: You see, if I split what's left, there'd be hardly any left for me at all.
Kirkham: Well, I'm not a great sherry drinker.
Vicar: Good! So, I can have it all ... now then what's the problem?
Kirkham: Well, just recently I've begun to worry about...
(The vicar has been looking through his desk. He produces a bottle of sherry in triumph)
Vicar: Ah! I've found another bottle! You can have some now if you want to.
Kirkham: Well... yes, perhaps a little...
Vicar: Oh you don't have to. I can drink the whole bottle.
Kirkham: Well in that case, no...
Vicar: Good! That's another bottle for me. Do go on.
(The vicar opens the bottle and pours a glass, drinks it and replenishes it again)
Kirkham:' I've begun to worry recently that...
(There is a knock on the door)
Vicar: Come in!
(A smooth man, Mr Husband, enters carrying a smart little briefcase)
Vicar: Ah, Mr Husband ... this is Mr Kirkham, one of my parishioners, this is Mr Husband of the British Sherry Corporation...
Kirkham: Look, look, perhaps I'd better come back later...
Vicar: No, no ... no do stay here. Have a sherry... you won't be long will you, Husband?
Husband: Oh no, vicar... it's just a question of signing a few forms.
(The vicar pours Husband a sherry)
Vicar: There we are... there we are, Mr Husband. Now, how about you, Mr Kirkham?
Kirkham: Well only if there's enough.
Vicar: Oh well, there's not much now.
Kirkham: Oh, in that case... no... I won't bother.
Vicar: (pouring himself one) Good.

Monty Python's Flying Circus

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Robert Louis Stevenson
So long as we love we serve; so long as we are loved by others, I would almost say that we are indispensable; and no man is useless while he has a friend.
Robert Louis Stevenson

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction.

Monday, March 28, 2005

It is interesting to contemplate an entangled bank, clothed with many plants of many kinds, with birds singing on the bushes, insects flitting about and worms crawling through the damp earth, and to reflect that these forms, so different yet so dependent on each other in so complex a manner, have all been produced by simple laws.There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone circling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved.

Charles Darwin, from 'On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life'

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Poetry is the art of putting the ocean into a glass.
Italo Calvino

Friday, March 25, 2005

Alice opened the door and found that it led into a small passage, not much larger than a rat-hole: she knelt down and looked along the passage into the loveliest garden you ever saw. How she longed to get out of that dark hall, and wander about among those beds of bright flowers and those cool fountains, but she could not even get her head though the doorway; ‘and even if my head would go through,’ thought poor Alice, ‘it would be of very little use without my shoulders. Oh, how I wish I could shut up like a telescope! I think I could, if I only know how to begin.’ For, you see, so many out-of-the-way things had happened lately, that Alice had begun to think that very few things indeed were really impossible.

There seemed to be no use in waiting by the little door, so she went back to the table, half hoping she might find another key on it, or at any rate a book of rules for shutting people up like telescopes: this time she found a little bottle on it, (‘which certainly was not here before,’ said Alice,) and round the neck of the bottle was a paper label, with the words ‘DRINK ME’ beautifully printed on it in large letters.

from 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland'
Lomo copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction.

Gasworks, Edinburgh
Scots in Hawaii
Wheeler County

The first of these short stories captures a particular type of Scots woman very well. The second, by Steve Earle, demonstrates that he's as good a storyteller as a songwriter.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Chogyam Trungpa
Discovering Magic
Whether you care to communicate with it or not, the magical strength and wisdom of reality are always there ... By relaxing the mind, you can reconnect with that primordial, original ground, which is completely pure and simple. Out of that, through the medium of your perceptions, you can discover magic ... You actually can connect your own intrinsic wisdom with a sense of greater wisdom or vision beyond you. You might think that something extraordinary will happen to you when you discover magic. Something extra-ordinary does happen. You simply find yourself in the realm of utter reality, complete and thorough reality.

Chogyam Trungpa, from 'The Sacred Path of the Warrior'
tastes just like chicken
mmmmnnnn... owl soup, deep fried monkey toes, squirrel brain, cat meat with steam bread, rook pie, camel feet a la vinaigrette, seal flipper pie, stewed dormouse, drunken shrimp, smoked bat, baby bees ...

or maybe you'd prefer the Breast Milk Banquet?

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Image copyright estate of Harry Callahan.

'Eleanor' by Harry Callahan

I don't often win things in raffles but I once bought a ticket to support Stills Gallery in Edinburgh and won an autographed catalogue from a Harry Callahan exhibition. This was the image on the cover, and shortly after that I went through to Glasgow to see a retrospective of his work. I've been an admirer of Harry Callahan's photography ever since.

Monday, March 21, 2005

A candy-colored clown they call the sandman
Tiptoes to my room every night
Just to sprinkle stardust and to whisper
'Go to sleep, everything is all right'

I close my eyes, then I drift away
Into the magic night. I softly say
A silent prayer, like dreamers do
Then I fall asleep to dream my dreams of you.

In dreams I walk with you, in dreams I talk to you
In dreams you're mine all of the time, we're together
In dreams, in dreams ...

This is a great Roy Orbison song, but it seems to have become tangled up in my mind with David Lynch's film 'Blue Velvet'. It's a bit like being unable to hear the slow intro to 'The End' by the Doors without seeing the opening of 'Apocalypse Now', or hearing the Byrds' 'I Wasn't Born to Follow' without an 'Easy Rider' association. The strange thing is, having just typed the previous sentence, I realise that, coincidentally, Dennis Hopper is in all these films. Anyone else have a similar problem with songs and soundtracks?

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction.
Science doesn't interest me. It doesn't take into account dreams, chance, laughter, emotion and contradiction, things that are precious to me.
Luis Bunuel

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Each new year is a surprise to us. We find that we had virtually forgotten the note of each bird, and when we hear it again it is remembered like a dream, reminding us of a previous state of existence. How happens it that the associations it awakens are always pleasing, never saddening; reminiscences of our sanest hours? The voice of nature is always encouraging.
Henry David Thoreau

Friday, March 18, 2005

Image copyright Alan Edwards. No unauthorised reproduction.
Mary's Song
I wad ha'e gi'en him my lips tae kiss,
Had I been his, had I been his;
Barley breid and elder wine,
Had I been his as he is mine.

The wanderin' bee it seeks the rose;
Tae the lochan's bosom the burnie goes;
The grey bird cries at evenin's fa',
'My luve, my fair one, come awa' .'

My beloved sall ha'e this he'rt tae break,
Reid, reid wine and the barley cake;
A he'rt tae break, an' a mou' tae kiss,
Tho' he be nae mine, as I am his.
Marion Angus (1854-1944)

Marion Angus is considered a minor Scots poet, but she wrote some very beautiful poems. In fact they're more like songs, and a few have been set to music. The only image I can ever find of her is the one here, but I wonder what she looked like in her youth.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Monty Python's Flying Circus
Working Class Playwright

A sitting room straight out of DH Lawrence. Mum, wiping her hands on her apron, is ushering in a young man in a suit. They are a Northern couple.

Mum: Oh dad... look who's come to see us... it's our Ken.
Dad: (without looking up) Aye, and about bloody time if you ask me.
Ken: Aren't you pleased to see me, father?
Mum: (squeezing his arm) Of course he's pleased to see you, Ken, he...
Dad: All right, woman, all right I've got a tongue in my head - I'll do 'talkin'. (looks at Ken distastefully) Aye ... I like yer fancy suit. Is that what they're wearing up in Yorkshire now?
Ken: It's just an ordinary suit, father... it's all I've got apart from the overalls.
(Dad turns away with an expression of scornful disgust.)
Mum: How are you liking it down the mine, Ken?
Ken: Oh it's not too bad, mum... we're using some new tungsten carbide drills for the preliminary coal-face scouring operations.
Mum: Oh that sounds nice, dear...
Dad: Tungsten carbide drills! What the bloody hell's tungsten carbide drills?
Ken: It's something they use in coal-mining, father.
Dad: (mimicking) 'It's something they use in coal-mining, father'. You're all bloody fancy talk since you left London.
Ken: Oh not that again.
Mum: He's had a hard day dear... his new play opens at the National Theatre tomorrow.
Ken: Oh that's good.
Dad: Good! good? What do you know about it? What do you know about getting up at five o'clock in t'morning to fly to Paris... back at the Old Vic for drinks at twelve, sweating the day through press interviews, television interviews and getting back here at ten to wrestle with the problem of a homosexual nymphomaniac drug-addict involved in the ritual murder of a well known Scottish footballer· That's a full working day, lad, and don't you forget it!
Mum: Oh, don't shout at the boy, father.
Dad: Aye, Hampstead wasn't good enough for you, was it? ... you had to go poncing off to Barnsley, you and yer coal-mining friends. (spits)
Ken: Coal-mining is a wonderful thing father, but it's something you'll never understand. Just look at you!
Mum: Oh Ken! Be careful! You know what he's like after a few novels.
Dad: Oh come on lad! Come on, out wi' it! What's wrong wi' me?
Ken: I'll tell you what's wrong with you. Your head's addled with novels and poems, you come home every evening reeking of Chateau La Tour...
Mum: Oh don't, don't.
Ken: And look what you've done to mother! She's worn out with meeting film stars, attending premieres and giving gala luncheons...
Dad: There's nowt wrong wi' gala luncheons, lad! I've had more gala luncheons than you've had hot dinners!
Mum: Oh please!
Dad: Aaaaaaagh! (clutches hands and sinks to knees)
Mum: Oh no!
Ken: What is it?
Mum: Oh, it's his writer's cramp! ...

Monty Python

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards
Mrs Chasen: Love? Love? What do you know about her? Where does she come from? Where did you meet her?
Harold: At a funeral.
Mrs Chasen: Oh... That's wonderful... I get an eighty-year-old pallbearer for a daughter-in-law! Be reasonable, Harold! You're dealing with your life! What will people say?!
Harold: I don't care what people say.
Mrs Chasen: You don't care! "Miss Shroud of 1890 Weds the Boy of a Thousand Deaths!" Listen to me...

Harold gets up to leave.

from 'Harold and Maude'

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

If a little dreaming is dangerous, the cure for it is not to dream less but to dream more, to dream all the time.
Marcel Proust

Monday, March 14, 2005

Would it not be the beautiful thing now
If you were coming instead of going?

Traditional island farewell, from the Gaelic
Harold and Maude - one of blackest comedies and strangest love stories ever made

Maude: What flower would you like to be?
Harold: I don't know. One of these, maybe.
Maude: Why do you say that?
Harold: Because they're all alike.
Maude: Oooh, but they're not. Look. See, some are smaller, some are fatter, some grow to the left, some to the right, some even have lost some petals. All kinds of observable differences. You see, Harold, I feel that much of the world's sorrow comes from people who are this (she points to a daisy) yet allow themselves be treated as that (she gestures to a field of daisies).

from 'Harold and Maude' directed by Hal Ashby (1971)

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards

Saturday, March 12, 2005

In order to understand the world, one has to turn away from it occasionally.
Albert Camus
Yes. I remember Adlestrop—
The name, because one afternoon
Of heat the express-train drew up there
Unwontedly. It was late June.

The steam hissed. Someone cleared his throat.
No one left and no one came
On the bare platform. What I saw
Was Adlestrop—only the name

And willows, willow-herb, and grass,
And meadowsweet, and haycocks dry,
No whit less still and lonely fair
Than the high cloudlets in the sky.

And for that minute a blackbird sang
Close by, and round him, mistier,
Farther and farther, all the birds
Of Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire.

Edward Thomas

The first two verses of this poem sound as if a rather detached accountant -- Prufrock perhaps -- is narrating them, but the next two belong to the pastoral world of the English nature poets. I like the way the poem starts with the silent, static sign in the rail station, then suddenly comes to life before fading out on a chorus of birdsong. It recounts an actual event which Thomas, who was killed at Arras during WW1, jotted down in his Field Notes in 1914.
shake rattle'n roll
everybody dance now

both videos probably need a broadband connection

Friday, March 11, 2005

Clouseau: Does your dog bite?
Hotel Clerk: No.
Clouseau: [bowing down to pet the dog] Nice doggie.
[dog bites Clouseau's hand]
Clouseau: I thought you said your dog did not bite!
Hotel Clerk: That is not my dog.

The Pink Panther Strikes Again (1976)
The Snapped Thread
Desire, first, by a natural miracle
United bodies, united hearts, blazed beauty;
Transcended bodies, transcended hearts.

Two souls, now unalterably one
In whole love always and for ever,
Soar out of twilight, through upper air,
Let fall their sensous burden.

Is it kind, though, is it honest even,
To consort with none but spirits-
Leaving true-wedded hearts like ours
In enforced night-long separation,
Each to its random bodily inclination,
The thread of miracle snapped?

Robert Graves

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards

someone always wants to stick their hand into a photograph
my favourite radio station
except for the jazzzzz...

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Mogami River near Oshida

I was riding on a horse my friend had lent me, when the farmer who led the horse asked me to compose a poem for him. His request came to me as a pleasant surprise.

Turn the head of your horse
Sideways across the field,
To let me hear
The cry of the cuckoo.

from The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Basho
Eddie Izzard

And Henry VIII, a big hairy king, went up to the Pope and said, 'Mr. Pope! I'm gonna marry my first wife, then I'm gonna divorce her. Now, I know what you're gonna say, but stick with me. My story gets better. Second wife, I'm gonna kill her! Cut her head off. Ah, not expecting that, are we? Third wife gonna shoot her. Fourth wife, put her in a bag. Fifth wife, into outer space. Sixth wife, on a rotissamat. Seventh wife, made out of jam...' and the Pope is saying, 'You crazy bugger! You can't do all this, what are you a Mormon?' ...
Eddie Izzard
I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry
Hear that lonesome whippoorwill
He sounds too blue to fly
The midnight train is whining low
I'm so lonesome I could cry

I've never seen a night so long
When time goes crawling by
The moon just went behind the clouds
To hide its face and cry

Did you ever see a robin weep
When leaves begin to die
That mean's he's lost his will to live
I'm so lonesome I could cry

The silence of a falling star
Lights up a purple sky
And as I wonder where you are
I'm so lonesome I could cry

I'm listening to Hank Williams, and I've finally found out what a whippoorwill sounds like.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Katherine Hepburn and James Stewart in 'The Philadelphia Story'

George: You're like some marvellous, distant, well, queen, I guess. You're so cool and fine and always so much your own. There's a kind of beautiful purity about you, Tracy, like, like a statue.
Tracy: George...
George: Oh, it's grand, Tracy. It's what everybody feels about you. It's what I first worshipped you for from afar.
Tracy: I don't want to be worshipped. I want to be loved.
Even in the begging bowl the hailstones
Santoka Taneda
Lomo copyright Alan Edwards

Monday, March 07, 2005

For I have known them all already, known them all:
Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,
I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a farther room.
So how should I presume?
TS Eliot, from The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock

I re-read this poem recently for the first time in many years. There's a line in it that has always been a source of embarrassment to me. While I was still at school I was interviewed as part of a University entrance exam. Not only had I done very little revision, but I also had a monumental hangover. I was grilled by two very 'donnish' men, both wearing tweed jackets with leather patches on the elbows, in a small room that smelled of sherry and pipe tobacco. One asked me about TS Eliot and whether I could 'relate' to his poetry. 'Oh yes,' i said with the air of someone with a lifetime of experiences stacked up behind him. 'Give me an example of a line that you can particularly relate to,' said the other. I tried to get my brain round this request, but the few lines I managed to dredge up from the memory banks seemed hopelessly inappropriate. The antique clock was ticking on the wood-panelled wall and the two faces were staring at me intently. I clutched at thin air and came up with 'I have measured out my life with coffee spoons'. They looked at me impassively, doubtless surmising that at my age I would have been more likely to have measured my life in crisp packets. How should I presume indeed?

mp3 of Eliot reading 'Prufrock' here

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards

this goat is actually smiling like the mona lisa for the camera
Being with you and not being with you is the only way I have to measure time.
JL Borges, from 'The Unending Rose'

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards

The Mona Lisa is, of course, a Da Vinci self-portrait
Sandy Williams: I had a dream. In fact, it was on the night I met you. In the dream, there was our world, and the world was dark because there weren't any robins and the robins represented love. And for the longest time, there was this darkness. And all of a sudden, thousands of robins were set free and they flew down and brought this blinding light of love. And it seemed that love would make any difference, and it did. So, I guess it means that there is trouble until the robins come.

from 'Blue Velvet' by David Lynch

Friday, March 04, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards
Complaint of the Moon in the Provinces

Ah! the beautiful full moon,
Huge as a fortune!

The retreat sounds in the distance,
Someone passes, the deputy mayor;

A harpsichord plays on the other side,
A cat crosses the square:

The provinces sleep!
Striking a final chord,

The piano shuts its window.
What time is it exactly?

Calm Moon, what an exile!
Need we speak : must it be?

Moon, oh dilettante Moon,
The same in every land,

You saw the Missouri yesterday,
And the ramparts of Paris,

The blue fjords of Norway,
The poles, the seas, what do I know?

Happy Moon! you can see,
Even now, the convoy

Leaving on her wedding-trip!
They are on their way to Scotland.

What a trap, if only, this winter
She had taken my verse at its word!

Moon, vagabond Moon, shall we share
A common cause, a single manner?

Jules Laforgue, translated by Andrew Ramier

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

'Yes Siddhartha,' he said. 'Is this what you mean? That the river is everywhere at the same time, at the waterfalls, at the ferry, and in the mountains, everywhere, and that the present only exists for it, not the shadow of the past, nor the shadow of the future?'

'That is it,' said Siddhartha, 'And when I learned that, I reviewed my life and it was also a river, and Siddhartha the boy, Siddhartha the mature man, and Siddhartha the old man were only separated by shadows, not through reality. Siddhartha's previous lives were also not in the past, and his death and return to Brahma are not in the future. Nothing was, nothing will be, everything has reality and presence.'

Hermann Hesse, from 'Siddhartha'
Lomo copyright Alan Edwards
I have spent many days stringing and unstringing my instrument while the song I came to sing remains unsung.
Rabindranath Tagore

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Lomo copyright Alan Edwards
Hmmmnnnn... I think I might try some of these out myself. I'm quite tempted by the Queens of Jiggle, and I may even go for a set of Naughty Nipples too.
it's all going pear-shaped
An Italian sex researcher claims he can tell a woman's personality from her breasts. Piero Lorenzoni has categorised breast types according to fruits. A woman with large, round breasts like a melon may appear motherly, but is far from it. "She likes eating and wants to be spoiled and admired, but seldom likes sex." Women with pert, prominent "lemon" breasts are "full of life, can laugh at themselves, and want a balanced life without surprises." Pert, oval-shaped breasts are like pineapples. "A woman with pineapple breasts is intelligent, often has a career but is still romantic, and is faithful." Pert, firm grapefruit-shaped breasts do not denote good sex. "This woman may look erotic, but in reality is bashful and homely. She spoils her partner but prefers tenderness to sex." A women with "oranges" is "self-confident and knows her goals, but has little interest in sex, preferring conversation." Small breasted women, with assets that resemble cherries, are funny, exciting, entertaining, intelligent, make great partners and are moderately interested in sex." Lastly, a woman with pear-shaped breasts "loves love in all its variations, can be very religious, but is known to have affairs."