Birdspot. On the road. Drawing birds.


Third sitting.

12 Responses to “aug 26”

  1. Sorry, this should really have been with this post:

    Mark, I can only hope that was a Google. Otherwise, to remember the director of HOME ALONE without the help of a search engine? At least eight hundred and sixty-seven additional painful reincarnations before becoming Buddha. :) I still think Ted is the best, though. Sheer lyrical, vatic gift.

    The poem (“Eclipse”) is much too long, but here are a few lines from the beginning and the end. Lines 4-20:

    “First in the lower left-hand corner of the window
    I saw an average spider stirring. There
    In a midden of carcases, the shambles
    Of insects dried in their colours,
    A trophy den of uniforms, reds, greens,
    Yellow-striped and detached wing-frails, last year’s
    Leavings, parched a winter, scentless — heads,
    Bodices, corsets, leg-shells, a crumble of shards
    In a museum of dust and neglect, there
    In the crevice, concealed by corpses in their old wrappings,
    A spider has come to live. She has spun
    An untidy nearly invisible
    Floss of strands, a few aimless angles
    Camouflaged as the grey dirt of the rain-stains
    On the glass. I saw her moving. Then a smaller,
    Just as ginger, similar all over,
    Only smaller. He had suddenly appeared.”

    125 until the end:

    “Ten minutes later they were at it again.
    Now they have vanished. I have scrutinized
    The whole rubbish tip of carcases
    And the window-frame crannies beneath it.
    They are hidden. Is she devouring him now?
    Or are there still some days of bliss to come
    Before he joins her antiques. They are hidden
    Probably together in the fusty dark,
    Holding forearms, listening to the rain, rejoicing
    As the sun’s edge, behind the clouds,
    Comes clear of our shadow.”

  2. There’s a lot of GREAT 20th Century poetry about invertebrates. Draw your own conclusions.

    “Roach, foulest of creatures,
    who attacks with yellow teeth
    and an army of cousins big as shoes,
    you are lumps of coal that are mechanized
    and when I turn on the light you scuttle
    into the corners and there is this hiss upon the land.
    Yet I know you are only the common angel
    turned into, by way of enchantment, the ugliest.
    Your uncle was made into an apple.
    Your aunt was made into a Siamese cat,
    all the rest were made into butterflies
    but because you lied to God outrightly–
    told him that all things on earth were in order–
    He turned his wrath upon you and said,
    I will make you the most loathsome,
    I will make you into God’s lie,
    and never will a little girl fondle you
    or hold your dark wings cupped in her palm.

    But that was not true. Once in New Orleans
    with a group of students a roach fled across
    the floor and I shrieked and she picked it up
    in her hands and held it from my fear for one hour.
    And held it like a diamond ring that should not escape.
    These days even the devil is getting overturned
    and held up to the light like a glass of water.”
    Anne Sexton

    In my youth, a friend took me to a reading by her. I had never heard of her before. She blew my socks off. I got her to sign my copy of her latest. Several months later she was dead.

  3. Aah – now we’re one-upping with poets! I, who never had much use for poetry, vote for Sexton.

  4. Catherine:
    You are too freakin’ perceptive. Thanks. But in all honesty, the whole Anne Sexton “thang”, freaked me out. She was quite a presence live, a few drinks and chain smoking, like a suburban Diamanda crossed with Mrs Robinson, she was reading all this stuff about masturbation and death, and I was there with a new girlfriend, who aspired to be a poet. Then she was DEAD. We broke up. It was necrofantastic.
    Something for everyone, even your Mom:

  5. Mark:
    Absolutely LOVED the davy thang!

    PS: Have you mixed me up with my daughter?

  6. Oho! I neither one-up nor am one-upped, but sit close to me, effendi, and in the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the All-Merciful, whose excrement (were it to exist and be measured by the troy ounce) would outvalue gold and massy platinum, I shall gainsay the entire notion of competition with the only anticlimactic story I know that involves a rocket scientist.

    One of the great moments of my life: sitting in the breakfast nook of [name removed to avoid charges of one-upsmanship], one of the greatest living writers in the English language and the only person yet to have won a Hugo, a Nebula, an Edgar, and a World Fantasy Award. Close by at the table were [name removed], one of science fiction’s most renowned talents, and [name removed], Australia’s supreme fantasist and imagier. Also some colleagues: a university librarian, a computer programmer, a NASA scientist.

    Long into the night, after the three legends had talked for hours of dreaming cities and cloud-barques and quays of jade; of green wine and clean-limbed maidens; sunset, memory, oblivion; columns of verd antique and red onyx, fountains that expelled wine from a golden pineapple into a silver basin of almonds and pistachios; the interplay of tile, marble, sound, color, space; there was a lull of no more than ten seconds in the conversation.

    With not a single previous mention of tryptophan, galliformes, Kansas City, finger-licking, or any kind of culinary art, the rocket scientist spoke up: “I barbecued a turkey once.”

    For years that was how we answered anyone who said something that had no context whatsoever. “I barbecued a turkey once.”

    P.S. Anne Sexton! Great story, Mark. The failed relationship.

    P.P.S. How about a favorite TMBG album? Probably “Flood” or “Mink Car” for me.

  7. CLH:
    “I’m not confused, I’m just well mixed.” Robert Frost
    Um, all I know is you do have to be a “certain” age to get that song. Like you know who Fess Parker IS.

  8. Addenda: CLH: I am old enough to have owned one of the requisite Davy Crockett faux coonskin hats.
    Mark. always a big fan of Mike Fink,”King of the River”

  9. While, during my usual occasional slow-morning-procrastination routine aka reading through favorite blogs, I found another monkey-taunting video. Since it was through my current art-digest fav C-Monster, and since I don’t want to repeatedly steal from that blog, I’ll let you go and peruse..

    But, inspired, I did look for more monkey vids, and here is another interspecies interaction:

  10. conclusion: dogs are not smarter than monkeys. like scarily not smarter.

  11. Interesting how posts from readers of Cathy’s blog have made me think differently about what might be going on here. My first thoughts (knowing nothing about animal psychology) as the clip rolls are that the dog is happy (wagging tail) and the monkeys are a tough read with those wonderful elongated gestures that could be oh-go-on-with-you or a playful sort of can’t-touch-me. Seeing the dog lie down at the end is a mind twist: does it associate the monkeys with people and expect to be petted? Are the monkeys going to pet it? Groom it?

    A great piece of advice from a professor of mine: Be Aware Of Your Countertransferences.

  12. Jesse:
    “I barbecued a turkey once.” Boy do I identify with that guy!

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>