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Monday, January 2, 2012

A poem in memory of a friend passed away on New Year's Eve

The Great Lover
by Rupert Brooke

I have been so great a lover: filled my days
So proudly with the splendour of Love's praise,
The pain, the calm, and the astonishment,
Desire illimitable, and still content,
And all dear names men use, to cheat despair,
For the perplexed and viewless streams that bear
Our hearts at random down the dark of life.
Now, ere the unthinking silence on that strife
Steals down, I would cheat drowsy Death so far,
My night shall be remembered for a star
That outshone all the suns of all men's days.
Shall I not crown them with immortal praise
Whom I have loved, who have given me, dared with me
High secrets, and in darkness knelt to see
The inenarrable godhead of delight?
Love is a flame:--we have beaconed the world's night.
A city:--and we have built it, these and I.
An emperor:--we have taught the world to die.
So, for their sakes I loved, ere I go hence,
And the high cause of Love's magnificence,
And to keep loyalties young, I'll write those names
Golden for ever, eagles, crying flames,
And set them as a banner, that men may know,
To dare the generations, burn, and blow
Out on the wind of Time, shining and streaming . . . .

These I have loved:
White plates and cups, clean-gleaming,
Ringed with blue lines; and feathery, faery dust;
Wet roofs, beneath the lamp-light; the strong crust
Of friendly bread; and many-tasting food;
Rainbows; and the blue bitter smoke of wood;
And radiant raindrops couching in cool flowers;
And flowers themselves, that sway through sunny hours,
Dreaming of moths that drink them under the moon;
Then, the cool kindliness of sheets, that soon
Smooth away trouble; and the rough male kiss
Of blankets; grainy wood; live hair that is
Shining and free; blue-massing clouds; the keen
Unpassioned beauty of a great machine;
The benison of hot water; furs to touch;
The good smell of old clothes; and other such--
The comfortable smell of friendly fingers,
Hair's fragrance, and the musty reek that lingers
About dead leaves and last year's ferns. . . .
Dear names,
And thousand other throng to me! Royal flames;
Sweet water's dimpling laugh from tap or spring;
Holes in the ground; and voices that do sing;
Voices in laughter, too; and body's pain,
Soon turned to peace; and the deep-panting train;
Firm sands; the little dulling edge of foam
That browns and dwindles as the wave goes home;
And washen stones, gay for an hour; the cold
Graveness of iron; moist black earthen mould;
Sleep; and high places; footprints in the dew;
And oaks; and brown horse-chestnuts, glossy-new;
And new-peeled sticks; and shining pools on grass;--
All these have been my loves. And these shall pass,
Whatever passes not, in the great hour,
Nor all my passion, all my prayers, have power
To hold them with me through the gate of Death.
They'll play deserter, turn with the traitor breath,
Break the high bond we made, and sell Love's trust
And sacramented covenant to the dust.
----Oh, never a doubt but, somewhere, I shall wake,
And give what's left of love again, and make
New friends, now strangers. . . .
But the best I've known
Stays here, and changes, breaks, grows old, is blown
About the winds of the world, and fades from brains
Of living men, and dies.
Nothing remains.

O dear my loves, O faithless, once again
This one last gift I give: that after men
Shall know, and later lovers, far-removed,
Praise you, 'All these were lovely'; say, 'He loved.'

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Cats and Dogs

It seems to me that cats and dogs fill that gap that develops in long-lasting human relationships. . . when you've lived with someone long enough that you no longer gaze for long seconds into his or her limpid eyes without awkwardness or a desire to be the first to look away. Dogs and cats, on the other hand, gaze unabashedly into their humans' eyes - tenderly, adoringly, loyally. No embarrassment, no jokes to break the awkward silence. . . just long, silent looks that speak volumes.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Your editorial bias is showing. . .

Charming No More: Strauss-Kahn Braces for the Wrath of American Puritanism

"Puritanism"? Really? "Puritanism"?? Because sexual assault and attempted rape are illegal?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Rain in the Forecast. . . Check

Weed-blocking fabric made from corn. . . Check.

Organic compost. . . Check.

Organic leeks by the dozen. . . Check.

Rain in the forecast. . . Check.

Thank you, God, for gardens and gardening.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Robbing (Fiscally Responsible) Peter to Pay ("A Day Late, A Dollar Short") Paul

The California legislature and governor have presented a new budget. . . one that "borrows" money from local government and special districts to pay bills at the state level. Hmm. . . I think we voted this option down in a special election just a few months ago. At least, I THOUGHT that's what the ballot read.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

For Those of Us Who Are Clutter-Challenged. . .

Organizing for Life: Declutter Your Mind to Declutter Your World Organizing for Life: Declutter Your Mind to Declutter Your World by Sandra Felton

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
This book is a heavy-duty read. It's not about how to organize your house: It's about why many of us have difficulty doing so. A thought-provoking and sometimes disturbing read, it addresses issues such as self-esteem, alcoholic parents, attention deficit, etc., etc. Author Felton doesn't condemn; rather, she offers hope and concrete suggestions for the perennially disorganized and clutter-challenged.

View all my reviews.

Monday, June 15, 2009

This Comic Geek Speaks on comicgeekspeak. . .

A couple of weeks ago, I did a phone interview with the fun, smart guys at ComicGeekSpeak. We discussed how publisher Cinebook goes about translating Franco-Belgian comic books and graphic novels, what the response has been in North America, what it's like to work with a largely European workforce, etc., etc. It's a pretty animated discussion.

If you're interested in listening, the podcast is here.