December 24, 2006

Fisherman´s Cottage by Grundyfoot














Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/grundyfoot/page3/

One Fine Day

One fine day I´ll be living at the seaside
In an old stone house soaked with salt and sand.
I´ll be listening to the sound of his melodious voice
And the words falling dancing from his mind.

The sea breeze will brush wildflowers and grasses
In the vibrant meadow of our late summer days,
I know, they´ll be ringing with our children´s laughter
For understanding is rooted within all man.

At night, we will cocoon inside our briny shell
With hands entwined and leaping hearts.
I may invite him to join me for some passionate spell,
Or to rock me to sleep in his healing arms.

Even bleak winds and currents won´t alter our delight
In assembling the conundrum´s pieces of our lives,
Instead we´ll enjoy the colour range of all days and nights
And let ourselves grow with the course of the tides.

Yes, one fine day we´ll be living at the seaside
Whatever accountants or fortune tellers may predict.
Moreover; hush...this is a secret! when that day arrives
Our hair will still glow with streaks of golden wheat.

*****************************

written on 21 November 2006 by Alice McDuff

December 06, 2006

Entwined Fragility

for my sister
Dragonfly, you came to her
Who´s been dreaming you
Long since.

If your tiny heart could count
The many hours that she has spent
Longing for you
To chose her,
To move her,
To grow her
In innocence and peace;

Would you decide to blow its little spark, and freeze?
Or would you settle down for good, responsive to her pleas?
******************

December 01, 2006

Lucky Beggar


"So tell me", he asks, "do you like to cook?",
Giving her some fresh-furtive glance.
"I don´t know", she replies, "but I sure like to kiss,
to sing in the mist, and to dance."

"But how about mastering needle and thread?"
He enquires, with a flickering sigh.
"No idea", she says, "but I sure like to bath
in the tub while keeping my tights."

"Are you skilled in the garden, my love?", he pursues,
With a tender wink of an eye."
"I can´t tell", she smiles, "but I sure like to lay
in the grass to watch glow-worms pass by."

"Well then", he concludes, "come and sit on my lap,
Abduct me into your states."
"With pleasure!", she laughs, "And when we come back
I will cook you a large cutlet plate."

****************
Alice McDuff

November 30, 2006

One Fine Day

(Love: Happy Flashes, Happy Visions_01)

One fine day I´ll be living at the seaside
In an old stone house soaked with salt and sand.
I´ll be listening to the sound of his melodious voice,
And the words falling dancing from his mind.

The sea breeze will brush wildflowers and grasses
In the vibrant meadow of our late summer days,
I know, they´ll be ringing with our children´s laughter
For understanding is rooted within all man.

At night, we will cocoon inside our briny shell
With hands entwined and leaping hearts.
I may invite him to join in for some passionate spell
Or to rock me to sleep in his healing arms.

Even bleak winds and currents won´t alter our delight
In assembling the conundrum´s pieces of our lives,
Instead we´ll enjoy the colour range of all days and nights
And let ourselves grow with the course of the tides.

Yes, one fine day we´ll be living at the seaside,
Whatever accountants or fortune tellers may predict.
Moreover; and this is a secret! when that day arrives
Our hair will still glow with streaks of golden wheat.

*****************************

written on November 21st, 2006 ~ Alice McDuff

A song is a song.
A poem is a poem.

November 17, 2006

GN-Leonids-2001 by Kirk Puuohau-Pummill's















GN-Leonids-2001 by Kirk Puuohau-Pummill´s
Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kamakoa/

Leonids

-”Hello Eric. Here I am!“

- „ Come in, Alice. It´s good to see you. May I help you out of your coat?”

- “ Thanks. Oh, how I like that about elder man… it´s so awfully old-fashioned and charming.”

- “My pleasure, dear. Eldery men, I´ll remember that. Come in. You look tired.”

- “Do I… well, I didn´t sleep much lately. And it´s pretty late, isn´t it?”

- “Yeah, I know. Thanks for coming over. Sit down there, please, make yourself comfortable. I´ll get you a glass of wine, shall I?”

- “No. A strong coffee, please. Thank you. Arghhh Eric!!! I hate that giant snake… why did you place the aquarium in the middle of your living room? Every time I come here, I feel it´s staring at me, as if… and why did you leave the glass slab half-open tonight, are you planning to carry out an experiment on me, or what??”

- “No no no… The animal simply needs some fresh air, scaredy-cat. I´ll shut it if you prefer. There!”

- “Ahh, that is too kind of you… though, how can you speak of `fresh air´… don´t tell me it is a smoker-snake and you share your fags with it, he? But say, what´s up, why did you ask me to come over?”

- “I have something for you.”

- “Great! What is it?”

- “Leonids.

- “Leonids??… But you know I just lost some weight without any effort, and you know I like it like that, so how can you tempt me with Brussel chocolate late at night? That´s not fair!”

- “Not `Leonidas´, silly billy. Leonids.”

- “????”

- “Tonight, tomorrow and Saturday night, we have the chance to be in the middle of a Leonid storm. A wonderful Leonid dust trail. Never heard of Leonids, darling?”

- “No…no. Are they… shiny?”

- “Very shiny!”

- “Are they beautiful??”

- “Breathtakingly!!”

- “Are they… dangerous???”

- “Sometimes.”

- “Tell me more! I´m wide awake now.”

- “Okay.

The Leonids are a profilic meteor shower associated with the comet Tempel-Tuttle. They get their name from the location of their radiant in the constellation Leo: the meteors appear to stream from that point in the sky.”

- “Oh, I see. Leo…`Lion´. I love Lions, I almost called my son Leo; but in 2003, that name was on the top 3 list for boys, so we chose another name for him… that was on the top 5 list in 2004, ha ha. But please, go on?”

- “Are you sure you can concentrate?”

- “Yeah, excuse me. Tell me more, about the Tempel comet, the meteor shower and all that. Someone once compared me to a meteor, and then later to a shooting star. So I´m very interested in the subject, believe me!”

- “Hmmmm. Meteors and shooting stars are sinonyms, dear. However… The meteor shower is visible every year around November 17, plus or minus a week, when the Earth moves through the meteoroid stream of particles left from the passages of the comet. The stream comprises solid particles, known as meteoroids, ejected by the comet as its frozen gases evaporate under the heat of the Sun which begins to warm the comet as it comes within the orbit of Jupiter. A typical particle is no bigger than fine dust. The main source of light for a meteor is caused by the meteoroid ramming air ahead of it as it slams into the Earth´s atmosphere at tremendous speed… 71km/s in the case of the Leonid meteorids.”

- “That´s speedy, indeed. What happens to the cosmic dust particles then?”

- “I´ll explain that in a minute. The tremendous pressures cause the dust spec to suffer compression stress that fragments and atomizes the dust and the resulting spray of microscopic debris collides with individual atoms of the atmosphere which then cool by glowing; not by friction as commonly thought. Larger particles leave a stream of smaller particles and compress larger amount of air and form a `Bolide´ or `Fireball´- which can leave a glowing trail in the atmosphere. Leonids in particular are well know for having such bright meteors… but tell me, who used to compare you to a shooting star?”

- “Oh, never mind. I told you it just happened once, and as you said yourself, the dust atomizes and disappears, so there´s not much left of the particular star, in the end…”

- “No, that´s incorrect. The dust, that is the particles of the trail, disappears, but the parent comet does not. It is very resistant, in fact, and has a considerable potential. It keeps coming back and ejecting. Look at Temple-Tuttle, the parent comet of the Leonid stream. It returns to perihelion every 33 years or so, in fact close to 3 times a century, generating new trails of meteoroids and dust each time.”

- “Why, that´s encouraging to learn. So, when did Tempel-Tuttle start crossing our earthly atmosphere?”

- “Oh, a long time ago. In fact, Leonids have been famous ever since, because their meteor showers, or storms, can be, and have been in a few cases, among the most spectacular. For example spikes in activity in 2004 were associated with streams from passages of the Comet Tempel-Tuttle in 1333 and 1733 because the Earth passed through both paths, as altered by gravitational and radiative forces over the time in between, while spikes in activity in 2001 were due in part to the passage of the comet in 1833. The 1833 storm itself was not due to the recent passage of the comet, but from a direct hit with the recent 1800 passage trail left behind, and the 1966 storm was from the 1988 passage of the comet…”

- “Aha, I see… so the effect is very enduring and long-lasting… revolving, also. And it must have a strong effect on nature and humans, or let´s say, the ones who can perceive it, and don´t ignore it, hasn´t it?”

- “Exactly, my love. I like it when you concentrate. For example, the meteor storm of 1833 was of superlative strength, in excess of a one hundred thousands meteors an hour, over the entire region of North America east of the Rocky Mountains. It was marked by the Native Americans, slaves and owners, and many others. It was, in a word, unignorable. Many thought it was the end of the world… or the beginning of a new age.”

- “Wow!”

- “Do you still mind the comparison with a meteor or shooting star?”

- “No, not any more.”

- “Good.”

- “Eric?”

- “Yep?”

- “When exactly do we have to look out for the Leonids? Tonight, or tomorrow, or…??”

- “Well, this year, on November 19th, the Earth passes very close to the centre of the trail created at the comet´s 1932 return. The calculated peak time of the outburst is 04:45 UT. It will probably not last very long, as meteor activity will rise and fall quite sharply, and so to see it you need to be in the right part of the world, which means west of Europe and west of Africa, and some eastern parts of the Americas. You need it to be night-time, and you need the radiant, that is the point in the constellation Leo where the meteors radiate from, to be above the horizon. This years´ encounter with the 1932 trail will lead to enhanced meteor activity: a nice outburst, but below storm level.”

- “Jesus, Eric… that is once again so amazing. But, oh; it´s already past midnight.I have to leave you now, I have to write something down instantly!”

- “What?? I thought we were about to watch the first night of Leonids together?”

- “Oh, I´m so sorry Eric, but I can´t, unfortunately… I really have to write that Leonid stuff down, I have to share it with someone.”

- “Someone? What Someone?? Why not share it with me now? Alice… don´t tell me that this someone is still that reckless Englishmen who pulled the wool over your eyes, please?”

- “Eric… stop it, please. You know this ain´t true. Between him and me, it´s different... it´s cosmic, I told you!

- “Cosmic, pah! You are too foolish, really. But it´s your life... Do what you must, Alice. And just feel free to come back when you need my help to sweep off the dust in your head!”
********************

Again:
- special thanks to Wikipedia (http://www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonids )
Other sources:
- Gary W. Kronk´s Comets & Meteor Showers, The Leonids, 1799 Leonids, http://comets.ansmeteors.org/meteors/showers/leonid1799.html
- Armagh Observatory, Leonid dust trails, http://www.arm.ac.uk/leonid/dustexpl.html

November 15, 2006

The Bill

The bill is heavy, you just said,
But pay it now we must.
I ask you: who defines that bill;
Who really pays the costs

For what´s called right or must be done
In order to redeem
Ourselves from all original sin
Of human specimen?

The bill is ample, you explain,
To foot it is my task.
But tell me what you´re paying for;
Whose demons do you cast?

Whose ancient failures do you shoulder,
Which faults are at stake?
Is this a power game of burdens,
Or a play of fate?

The bill is brutal, you complain,
But pay it we all need.
I wonder: what´s more cruel then;
To see, or not to see?

What´s more destructive than a bill
Forbidding us to seek
For different ways to sail our ships
On oceans, wide and deep?

The bill is endless, you conclude,
And options there are none.
Tell me: how many lives we have
to leave the border zone?

**************************

With love & tenderness,
x Alice

November 02, 2006

Autumn Still Life

Winter has fallen into the land
Autumn leaves covered with frost
The hedgehog dresses its foliage camp
The squirrel buries golden nuts.

Darkness eats up late midday light
It is down time for my hopes
Will dumbness wrap them in the night
Or will love throw me an anchor rope?

On the unmoved scale of waiting
Time is an merciless enemy of life
And intransigence is more cruel than hating
It balances dignity on the edge of a knife.

Oh, winter has fallen into my heart
Covered my cheeks with frozen pearls
I am standing naked in a world apart
Holding my breath for love to swirl.

****************

October 28, 2006

The Pearl Flash_01

Foreword

Yes, it´s time for something else…

I have indeed been busy sorting out the many ideas, input and inspirations that came across my way and my mind recently. I decided that I needed another tool to collect and make them into some kind of an order... et voilà: here is my first issue of The Pearl Flash:-)
It might have an introspective and self-portrayal aspect and surely does not deliver an in-depth consideration of all the issues raised, but that´s meant to be: is it really always necessary to think everything through from beginning to end? Sometimes, we sure wouldn´t even start doing a thing if we knew about its forthcoming, sordid end... um... well, well.

Anyway, let me say that I rather intend to structure my own flashes and snapshots on other peoples more or less outstanding accomplishments, performances, behaviour and thoughts. I will add some insignificant comments of my own here and there, but please feel free to ignore me completey: As usual, I´m writing mainly for my love for words and thoughts, and secondly for anyone interested.

x Alice

Octobre 28, 2006

**********

Stuff to catch

Literature

Joe Boyd: White Bicycles - Making Music in the 60ies
edited at Serpent´s Tail Press in May 2006, ISBN:1852429100

A most insightful, witty and `out-of-the-guts´ book! The 60ies throughout and beyond clichés, and a wonderful chronicle of British music. I discovered some grandious British folk singer/songwriter through this book, like Anne Briggs. I might was born too late, but I caught the ring.

For more, visit:
www.joeboyd.co.uk
www.serpentstail.com


Music

“12 Secundos de Oscuridad” by Jorge Drexler

Noted for his musical contribution to the brillian movie “The Motorcycle Diaries”, this former otorhinolaryngologist and lyric poet from Uruguay has delivered a quiet, intelligent and subtle record about the constructive force of doubts. I´m not that much into South-American music and my Spanish is rather poor, and I usually dislike smooth male voices, but this piece is well worth hearing. My favourite is “La vida es más compleja de lo que parec" - life is much sublter than it seems.

For more, see and hear here: http://www.jorgedrexler.com/


Lieu

The White Dunes of Norderney

"Sea, old sea
Please, hear my plea…"

The harsh wind blowing on sandy dunes, the wild north-sea, the ever-changing sky made my heart leap. Besides, there´s a very nice ´n´cosy restaurant near-by:-)
I´m a lucky woman.

http://www.norderney.de/publish/viewfull.cfm?objectID=212E97EF_9A36_4172_474B4BCBA8BCAE8C
http://www.weisseduene.com/

**********


Flashback in Admiration

Film

”As It Is In Heaven” by Kay Pollack
Sweden, 2005

Best foreign film at last year´s Oscars, I missed to see it (not only because of this reason, but for various reasons). Now I caught up, and I was more than delighted. This film about a burnt-out superstar conductor who returns to his homeland village in Sweden, where he learns to simply live and love again - music, people and... a woman, is beautifully crafted, very enrapting and all-over rousing.

For more, see:
http://www.wie-im-himmel-derfilm.de/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0382330/


Music

“Crossroads” by Cream

Exactly, not that Gibson guitar, not the Festival, not the Centre, not even the collection-CD. The late 60ies Cream-version that appeared on “Wheel of Fire”, of course! What a mighty kick-ass song!! I can´t stop listening to those physical guitar licks..


Literature

Joseph Conrad: The Return
written circa early 1897; never published in magazine form; collected in "Tales of Unrest", 1898;
(Conrad, presaging the sentiments of most readers, once remarked, "I hate it").

This dissecting marital short story by Polish born British novelist Joseph Conrad punched me in the heart and made my blood freeze. It´s a set book for all newly– and elderly-weds, and for all
adulterers in mind and in real.

For more, simply read this incredible short story. Full stop.

**********


On the Horizon

Exibition

Picasso - Malen gegen die Zeit

Düsseldorfer Kunstsammlung K20
February 3, 2007 to May 28, 2007

I have focused a lot on Picasso in the mid-90ies when I lived in Paris, visiting as much exhibitions as possible, and reading everything about his life and work that I could grab. Like the bewildering and fascinating autobiography “Life With Picasso” by his longtime (but not last) mistress and companian Francoise Gilot.

The Düsseldorf exposition will highlight his late work, and especially how his work became a fight against his leaking life-time. I heard that it will also reflect his love and relationship to his last wife Jaqueline Roque, who was 46 years younger than him. I don´t like her as much as Francoise, but it´ll be interesting to learn how she gave him the space and the atmosphere for his late creative activity.

And I really look forward to rediscover that 90-year-old Picasso who said: "I have just begun."


Science

Phenomenons of Assortative Mating and Major Histocampability Complex

I just bumped into these two scientific phenomenons, which are very interesting it seems.

I´ll have to get into that...

**********


A closer Look

Personality

Hannah Arendt, German Jewish Thinker and Political Theorist
(she refused to see herself as a philosopher...)
1906 - 1975

Young German journalist Arno Widmann who met her in the late 60ies instantly fell in love with her for her radiant "sex-appeal of intelligence". She was an outstanding woman, best-known for her Political Theory, her passion of thinking and her brilliant analysis of human nature and collective phenomenons, like totalitarism.

But I am interested in another aspect of her. As a very young student in the early 1920ies, she fell deeply in love and became the mistress of her older teacher, famous philosopher Martin Heidegger who was married father of two children and 17 years older than her. This alliance had a major influence on her life and work.

Although after a few difficult years of a hidden relationship, she was married twice herself, she kept a life-long, intense though sporadic romantic relationship with that man, and even managend to forgive him not only his emotional flaccidities, but also his "intellectual mistakes" when he adhered the Nazi party in the thirties for conceptual reasons. After consequently cutting off all contact during that time for many years, she (!) had the nerve and dignity to get in touch with him again in the early 1950ies and to install and keep up a beautiful and enriching conversation and very special friendship until his death. How admirable that she was able to differenciate between the weak and recreant side, and the brilliant, loveable and admirable other side of the man.

I want to learn more about her, she´s thrilling. I will get into her life soon.

http://www.berlinonline.de/berliner-zeitung/archiv/.bin/dump.fcgi/2006/1014/feuilleton/0012/index.html
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hannah_Arendt
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hannah_Arendt

**********


Forecast

The next issue of the Pearl Flash will deal, amongst other things, with Italian Philosopher Umberto Galimberti´s notion of love as developed in “Le cose dell´amore” that has been recently edited in Germany, the new DVD of German musician Marius Müller-Westernhagen and the magical Island of Corsica.

Who I Am - The Other Side Of The Coin

So, I finally found out who I am
And I am a much sought-after man
I even lit a baroness´ light
And delighted her greedy heart all night
Until she laid her head to rest
Upon my heavily beating masculine chest
And sank to sleep with a satisfied shiver
Before I broke all arrows left in my quiver.

Yes, I finally found out who I am
I´m a remarkable but half-hearted loverman
A remarkable but half-hearted loverman
Yes, a remarkable but half-hearted loverman.

And I never thought it would come to this
I spent three minutes just on having a kiss!
And though shagging my wife was a daily duty
I fell there and then in love with that German beauty
But as I laid my head to sleep
I realized I made all of them weep
My mistress, my kids, the wife and the cat
Many men my age never get to that.

So, I finally found out who I am
I´m a remarkable but half-hearted loverman
A remarkable but half-hearted loverman
Yes, a remarkable but half-hearted loverman.

(Repeat 3x)


**************

Sorry….but I just couldn´t help doing this…:-)
I´m glad you removed it: such a loveless song that was, so dull, so mediocre. You are much more than that.
In fact, what are you doing here?


October 24, 2006

Anytime, Anywhere...

"Whenever, wherever" he once said to me
And I was in love, so I dared to believe.

He crossed the grey ocean, followed his heart
How foolish to think of a beautiful start.

We had scarcely sat down when he asked for my love
"Two sides of a coin"; some disposable glove?

We laughed and we kissed, we cried and we flew
On a blissful cloud that seemed to be true
And made both of us feel completely renewed.

First change in the weather that came in our way
He started to flee from all options to stay

Blocked out my emotions, ignored all my pains
Pushed me aside, into bitter rain.

Stonewalling and fading in the face of my plea
Does he aim at becoming a stranger to me?

"Whenever, wherever" he once said to me
Will he ever again set his feelings free?
I miss the man behind that facade I see.


****************

Recalling September 15th, 2005

Beyond the blues, what is there for us?

September 30, 2006

My Touchstones

Constantin Brancusi - The Kiss - 1908
********************************************
When my senses explode, overrunning time and space,
When my hopes rule my mind, vanquishing all fears,
And my trust stands up, to overcome all pains,
I am a woman in love.

When he offers me shelter, to ride out the storm,
When he opens his arms, to give me his warmth,
And strokes my hair, to role away stones,
I can feel his love.

When our souls unite, unveiling our dreams,
When our hearts transcend, allowing us to see,
And our strengths work, to meet our common needs,
We are partners in love.

************************************************

Compass

Compass
~ by Kimberly Tork & Paul Martin ~

Inside I have this thing that empowers me,
A guiding force from well within,
I will let you borrow it for awhile,
Dormant knowledge instinctively known,
A passionate balance evolved from ink and hope

Together as one the path is now much clearer.
We can nearly see the other side.
So steer us both, I quickly long to say,
I've seen inside your caring soul of flame and honor.

Do you feel the heat of my compass sway,
Does it measure up to something meaningful?
Do I move with you, from your first course of direction,
Does it recognize the tune within, that it longs to obey?

I crawled up to a mountain top, just to whisper this burning,
This longing, a yearning so strong it is pure desire
I create here a place for my changing existence,
In this life always learning each step of the way.

I write words with the fire of passion on this unconquered stone,
My secrets fumble with scratches as I scrape up the strength,
I knew you watched me there, climbing together in thoughts alone,
From united worlds so far out there, it seems only a hundred feet away.

I walk back to you, I know you know what drives me
To see what you have done with what I bestowed upon you,
You never disappoint me, you can just tell how I am feeling
Let us set sail now! you tell me, I always feel exactly the same.

As long as you don't forget this and maroon me later on,
We should never have blinding bouts of doubt about our beliefs
But I take my chances, you guide the way as I go with the flow
I will conquest the direction that I have long laid out.

With you here next to me, I can see more clearly now,
To control and mold my masterful passions from deep within,
I explore all my options as you shine the guiding light
There is nothing to stare at but rippling waves and the clouds up high.

The black eyed sky stares back at us now, your compass pulsates
Mine beating in tandem, I am right beside you as we see the future
Please tell me how you knew the way through all those stormy waters
Now merging together, as we land at life's horizon,
In our dreams for passion we are happily united

~

"Compass" was co-written and published by Kimberly Tork (unveilingdominion) and Paul Martin (Poetical) on September 28, 2006 at Poetry Junction´s ~ The Poems Forum, where I am a happy member, too :-)

I love this poem, it´s brilliant!
Thanks to both of you for granting me a licence for my Wonderland!

Find more of their works here:

Kimberly Tork;
http://www.authorhouse.com/BookStore/ItemDetail.aspx?bookid=35092
Poetry Junction´s ~ The Poems Forum; http://poetryjunction.proboards19.com/index.cgi

September 17, 2006

The Light Of Real


The night is heavy, thick, unclear,
Cold sweat invades our minds,
His heart is beating, like an engine
Keeping him alive.

In darkness whispered words, a song,
To smoothe the razor´s cut.
It´s our attempt to stretch the time
While running out of luck.

Distorted scenes on glassy bottom,
Hearts laid on the line.
I am unable to express
The storm I feel inside.

Instead my senses try to print
All that we used to be.
His vivid spirit, loving eyes
that used to look at me.

When tears erupt of burning souls
Then sorrow´s surely real?
When all that´s left are gasped words
Despair is surely clear?

I sweep myself out on the street
Where life will take what´s due.
Debuggers running in my mind
Deceiving all my view.

The same old sun is shining here,
It has no other choice.
Some things have changed, others remained
And I still hear his voice.

But oh! Erosion yet begins
Its aching daily fight
Against all trust in blithely love
That used to shine so bright.

A spoil heap built of broken dreams
Of everyone engaged.
I mourn for him, for us, and those
We hurt and we enraged.

Meanwhile, all doors and windows shut,
He looks for peace of mind
Seeks for forgiveness and a way
To leave me far behind.

I jump into a frozen lake
In order to awake.
My blood is pulsing in my veines,
My life is coming back.

And then, I sense my family´s care
I feel my friends´ esteem,
I hold my dying grandma´s hand
I sing my child to dreams.

Will it be easier to stick
To comfort situations?
Will it be easier to go
For simple explanations?

And to forget or to destroy
Those memories of love,
And to forget or to deny
intensity and warmth?

The truth is relatively vague,
a stranger to all lovers,
It´s only in the light of real
That we may lift the covers.

For now, we´ll walk on cattery-cornered,
Facing slippery slopes,
And fruitful grapes shall ripe again
At least these are our hopes.

Three stiches needed for our wounds
To heal from all this mess,
One is compassion, one is time,
The third is tenderness.

September 16, 2006

Quotation of the Day



"A man marries to have a home,
but also because he doesn't want to be bothered with sex
and all that sort of thing. "


W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965)


Bless you, Mr Maugham, for being so clear-sighted and cristal-clear!!! :-P

September 02, 2006

Scene With Miranda And Ferdinand, 1782
















"Scene With Miranda And Ferdinand"
by Angelika Kauffmann, 1782

These Knotty Love Ciphers













Once again, my friend, once again and once more
I must shut my eyes to see,
For your words, my dear, and conclavian games
Form a Babylonian tree.

Can´t you feel, beloved, can´t you sense, can´t you feel
That this bond is still uncrowned?
And that songs, my heart, many songs and fine tales
Full of colour are left to sound?

Don´t you know, my love, don´t you know, don´t you see
That salvation isn´t free?
Why not try, my sweet, why not stand up and blaze
Some new trails for you and me?

If you choose, my friend, if you fall back and choose
To return into dusted rooms,
You may lose, my dear, you may lose once again
All your sight, independence and bloom.

You´ll be locked, poor you, you´ll be trapped and be locked
In an endless loop of plea.
And you´ll miss, my heart, you will miss and forget
What the savour of life could be.

“As for me, my love”, says the lioness queen,
“I shall cover the looking glass,
For my heart, beloved, for my heart and my soul
Need to lay on prospering grass.”

********************

Was ´t well done?;-)

August 27, 2006

The girl who named Pluto

















At eleven, Venetia Burney had a
keen interest in astronomy and myths.

Source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/4596246.stm

Venetia Burney´s Tears

They used to be a bunch of nine
Orbiting ´round the sun,
Though one of them was rather small
And fire, it had none,
Instead an icy, freezing shell
And an eccentric run.

“Why don´t you name it Pluto?”
I suggested to grandpa,
And after some discussion
On the planetary bar
They seemed to fancy what I said
So that was set so far.

Henceforth dear Pluto was an honorable
Member of the club,
Like Venus, Mars and Jupiter,
And it was never snobbed.
Those giants liked its funny ways
And all three moons it brought.

But then sly astronomers met
From hundred different nations
About the Kuiper Belt they tried
Some serious conversations
That ended in a hue and cry
Of all those delegations.

“Count Pluto out!”, screamed one of them,
“He is too wee to stay,
And Charon, Ceres, Xena; oh!

Those we must keep away,
To open floodgates to them all
We firmly must say `nay´!”

“Pluto has always been a planet”,
Yelled another one,
“How dare you change our history,
Traditions all-time long?
By sentiment and public meaning
Pluto´s myth grew strong!”

“Enough!”, said Doctor Jocelyn Bell,
Solution we must find,
Stop all this hassle and get back
To acuteness of mind!”
And finally `dwarf planet´ was
The grade that they did find.

That is the story how my fast friend
Made of rock and ice
Lost all its planetary status
In a game of dice,
Now when snow falls watch me shed tears
For Pluto´s fall and rise.


August 21, 2006

Analysis Paralysis

What is he really thinking?
What is he working on?
Coming for me unhoped for
Or going it alone?

Why is he not affected?
Why isn´t he in need
For everything we shared?
Hasn´t loss made him bleed?

Where are our hopes and trust?
Where is our unity?
His acts dilute our happiness
Like sandstones in the sea.

Will I ever see through this,
Will I yet truly know?
Turning around in circles
I´m wondering where to go.

When will I stop to hope?
When will I stop to wait
For movement and decision,
For him to get it straight?

Who can I call for remedy?
Who offers me protection
From reverie and mirages,
From waste and alienation?

How can I find my strength again?
How can I ressurrect
From torment and exclusion,
Find dignity to act?

Extinction and oblivion,
Is this the only way?
Am I supposed to take it
Or wait another day?


This was written some time ago; re-edited recently: thanks Farkas and Luke for support:-)

August 16, 2006

At Some Hotel

Compulsive glass doors open and close
And wide-open their mouth once again
To suck me into some crowded stills,
A course that I cannot prevent.

Familiar formation of welcome words,
Bare void must be covered or filled.
Bustling activity, babble of voices,
Lips showing meaningless grins.

I enter the lift that climbs up to the cell,
Is there sanctuary for a while?
A click-clack and yet another door snaps,
Yellow light and a telly that whirrs.

Rectangular forms, built up and arranged
To fit ever revolving schemes,
Still no rapport is there, no homelike feel,
Instead yearning and loneliness sneer.

Looking out of the window I seek for a clue
Or a possible hint of fate,
But Warsaw´s front remains cold and hostile
For my keen lucky streak has passed by.

August 13, 2006

Circular Polarizer by PiccoloNamek


Polarization (final_August 21, 2006)

- “Hello, Eric!”

- “Alice? Is it really you, Alice McDuff??

- “Yes, it´s me. Hi, how are you?”

- “Good, thanks. Christ, I can´t believe it… how long has it been since we last talked?”

- “Umm, I don´t know … about a year, I guess…”

- “Right, exactly! We met at London-Heathrow, I was coming back from that Norwegian research mission, and you were just leaving for the continent..”

- “Oh yes, that was… curious, really. A curious meeting on a dreadful Airport.”

- “Haha, yeah. I remember very well… you had just split up with that fellow you had been so much in love with… and I told you that from my point of view, he was a coward and that you deserved better… what was his name again??


- "Aww no, Eric, please don´t....."

- "Anyway… you were pretty sad at that time, beautifully sad if I may say…. I hope you got over him by now… you do have, have you??

- "Hmmmm.
Listen, Eric. I need your help.”

- “Anytime, baby. What can I do for you? Another emotional rescue needed, or..???”

- “What do you know about *Polarization*?"

- “Polarization”? You mean, as in “plane polarization”?

- "I don´t know, you tell me, you´re the scientist! But yeah, I guess… You know, last Friday when I drove back from work in my car, I heard on the radio that birds use polarization for their orientation… I thought that this is a very interesting phenomenom… and a good thread for a write. So I´d like to know more about it. I remembered that you have been doing some research on that stuff last year.. so, what can you tell me about it?”

- “Well, okay. You asked for it. So let´s start with some basics:

Polarization: The simplest manifestation of polarization to visualize is that of a plane wave
, which is a good approximation to most light waves (a plane wave is a wave with infinitely long and wide wavefronts). All electromagnetic waves propagating in free space or in a uniform material of infinite extent have electric and magnetic perpendicular to the direction of propagation. Conventionally, when considering polarization, the electric field vector described and the magnetic field is ignored since it is perpendicular to the electric field and proportional to it. The electric field vector may be arbitrarily divided into two perpendicular components labelled x and y (with z indicating the direction of travel). For a simple harmonic wave, where the amplitude of the electric vector varies in a sinusoidal manner, the two components have exactly the same frequency. However, these components have two other defining characteristics that can differ. First, the two components may not have the same amplitude. Second, the two components may not have the same phase, that is they may not reach their maxima and minima at the same time. The shape traced out in a fixed plane by the electric vector as such a plane wave passes over it (a Lissajous figure)... Can you follow, Alice?"

- “Sure, go on. I particularly fancy the part about the frequency and the presence or lack of synchronicity of amplitudes and phases… but please, continue.”

- "Okay. In nature, electromagnetic radiation is often produced by a large number of individual radiators, producing waves independently of each other. This type of light is described as incoherent
. In general there is no single frequency but rather a spectrum of different frequencies present, and even if filtered to an arbitrarily narrow frequency range, there may not be a consistent state of polarization. However, this does not mean that polarization is only a feature of coherent radiation. Incoherent radiation may show statistical correlation between the components of the electric field, which can be interpreted as partial polarization. In general it is possible to describe an observed wave field as the sum of a completely incoherent part (no correlations) and a completely polarized part. One may then describe the light in terms of the degree of polarization, and the parameters of the polarization ellipse…”

- “…Incoherent radiation may show statistical correlation between the components of the electric field – partial polarization... Wow! This is complex and still so absolutely plausible. So in fact, there is a wide range of possible external circumstances for polarization to take place, but nevertheless the phenomenom is real and ever existing and revolving!”

- “Haha, yeah... kind of, if you wanna put it that way. But you particularily wanted to know about polarization in nature, didn´t you.”

-
“That’s right. I want to know what it does to birds and bees and so on, what effects it has in everyday life.. but I also like it when you digress, Eric...”

- “Okay, Alice. Please listen and don´t interrupt me umteen times!
Polarization in nature, science, and technology: Light reflected by shiny transparent materials is partly or fully polarized, except when the light is normal
to the surface. A polarizing filter, such as a pair of polarizing sunglasses, can be used to observe this by rotating the filter while looking through. At certain angles, the reflected light will be reduced or eliminated. Polarizing filters remove light polarized at 90° to the filter's polarization axis. If two polarizers are placed atop one another at 90° angles to one another, no light passes through..."

- "...no light passes through."

- "Exactly. And then, there´s polarization by scattering. It is observed as light passes through the atmosphere. The scattered light produces the brightness and color in clear skies. This partial polarization of scattered light can be used to darken the sky in photographs, increasing the contrast. This effect is easiest to observe at sunset, on the horizon at a 90° angle from the setting sun. Another easily observed effect is the drastic reduction in brightness of images of the sky and clouds reflected from horizontal surfaces, which is the main reason why polarizing filters are often used in sunglasses. Also frequently visible through polarizing sunglasses are rainbow-like patterns caused by color-dependent birefringent effects, for example in toughened glass (e.g. car windows) or items made from transparent plastics. The role played by polarization in the operation of liquid crystal displays (LCDs) is also frequently apparent to the wearer of polarizing sunglasses, which may reduce the contrast or even make the display unreadable…”

- “Oh Eric, do you think that people who wear these incredibly expensive, ugly sun-glasses are even aware of what´s happen
ing to them when they look through those glasses? Maybe that´s a major but yet unconscious reason why so many people wear sunglasses, even when there´s no sunlight around…

But how about animals? They can perceive polarization of light without any aid, right?”

- "Don´t run out of patience, Alice! I can see you haven´t changed a bit. Concentrate!! And as I said: don´t interrupt me, please?!”

- “Aye, aye, Sir! »

- “OK, I´ll tell you in a second... listen to me... Many animals
are apparently capable of perceiving the polarization of light, which is generally used for navigational purposes, since the linear polarization of sky light is always perpendicular to the direction of the sun. This ability is very common among the insects, including bees, which use this information to orient their communicative dances..."

- "Dance, little bee,
please dance for me..."

-" ...Polarization sensitivity has also been observed in species of octopus, squid, cuttlefish, and mantis shrimp. The rapidly changing, vividly colored skin patterns of cuttlefish, used for communication, also incorporate polarization patterns, and mantis shrimp are known to have polarization selective reflective tissue. Sky polarization can also be perceived by some vertebrates, including pigeons, for which the ability is but one of many aids to homing…”

- “An aid to homing…!!! Aw, this is stunning, really. But Eric… what about humans? I mean… do you think that humans are somehow influenced or guided by Polarization??"

- “Well, as far as we know, generally they are not. Some of us may be, though. The naked human eye
is weakly sensitive to polarization, without the need for intervening filters. Polarized light creates a very faint pattern near the center of the visual field, called "Haidinger´s brush". This pattern is very difficult to see, but with practice one can learn to detect polarized light with the naked eye.”

- “Oh. I see. It needs continuous practice and perseverance. Things that most people never get ´round to.”

- “Right, you got it! Well, do you need to know more, or is it enough for a start.”

- “It is enough for today. Thank you so much! I have to digest and think about all this. I might also gather some further information on this on my own and ding you again for explanation in case I don´t manage to cope with it.”

- “You´re always welcome, Alice. I´m glad if I was helpful. But tell me… will you let me know about your write when you´ve finished it?"

- “Of course! You´ll be the first to read it, Eric.”

- “That´s almost all I wanted to hear, honey. Tho... Alice?"


-"Hmm?"

- "You still love that bastard, don´t you?"


(to be continued...)


Special thanks to: Wikipedia, the one in a million!

August 11, 2006

August 02, 2006

Pleased To Meet You, Mr Freud!

Ok, here are some typical "morning pages"... and they go like this:

I dreamt that I stepped out on the balcony of our flat at the break of dawn to catch a glimpse of the dampness of late summer. My little son Dave was at my side, the man I share my everyday life with was still asleep in our marriage-bed.

Instead of the usual balcony setting, I saw a huge aquarium with various fish of all sizes standing on the left side of the balcony, and a big brown bear on the right. A bear? Yes, a bear! Not one of those John Irving bears, though (and no: I hadn´t read any Irving novel at eve!). It was a dishevelled, messy and alarmingly meagre bear obviously looking for food. At first I wondered why I hadn´t taken any notice of those fish and that bear before, and how both species had survived without getting fed by us. Apparently, the bear hadn´t lived on the fish.Both - fish and bear - looked very ancient, as if they had been out there for donkey´s years. But whereas the fish looked well nurtured and contented, the bear seemed to be disoriented, ahungered and about to go - but not for the fishes...




Instinctively, I pulled my little son to myself and tried to close the heavy glassy French window that had been open all night, but it was already too late... The animal saw us, turned in our direction and started to jump on us. Appalled, I grabbed my son and rushed towards the entrance door, thinking that if I managed to get out before the bear and to double-lock the flat door firmly from outside, Dave would be safe. I felt that it was possible that we might never be able to come back, but there seemed to be no other way.

But what about my husband still sleeping in the bedroom, innocent and oblivious to the imminent danger? Should I warn him, or should I rather push our luck and keep quiet in order not to draw the bear´s attention to this easy prey that it hadn´t detected so far, albeit the open balcony window in the past? How could he flee or fight the bear if it discovered him, with a double-locked entry door?

There was no time for further consideration as the terrifying animal came nearer. So I decided to warn my man and yelled: "Beware!! There´s a greedy angry bear in our flat, chivvying us around! I´m trying to get Dave out, and then I´ll instantly call the police and the fire brigade so they will get you out as well! Run and try to go up to the maisonnette, the stairs are too tiny for the bear to follow you up there, if you manage you´ll be safe!!!" And then, not knowing whether he had heard me at all, Dave and I had a narrow escape through the entrance door, which I locked firmly. Running down the stairs, we could hear the bear howling and bashing furiously against the door, but it didn´t break.

As soon as we had left the stairway and stepped outside, I alternately tried to call the police and the fire brigade on my mobile, which I had by chance taken along. (OK, I admit this sounds absurd, but remember that we´re in a dream and that this is the year 2006!) But oh! None of those urgency numbers worked! I tried again and again, becoming more and more hectic and desperate... nowt! In horror and with images of the bear and my husband struggling in my mind´s eye, I changed my strategy and tried to call any of my close friends for help, but it didn´t work either. Some of them wouldn´t believe my story, others were simply non-accessible.

Instead, something very weird happened: Out of the blue, I got one, then another, then a third texto from my far-away lover who had been absent for ages! "What?" I wondered, momentarily getting distracted from the main plot. In a short flare-up of hope, I thought that maybe he could be a help to me. I quickly checked my lover´s messages, but it was one of life´s many ironies that they were all self-centred or lacking in content. Meaningless word formations, none of them offering any alternative or help to me. Then I got a fourth texto. It was from my husband, saying: "Where are you? I am with the bear."

Exhausted and enraged in the face of adversities and confusion, I threw my mobile away, ordered my child to wait for me in the garden and climbed up the stairs to the flat again to come to my husband´s assistence, or to go for whatever may happen...

That was the very moment when I awoke from this nightmare, all trembling and drowned in tears. I looked over to my man, sleeping quietly and peacefully. A wave of relief pervaded me. Following a strong stirring of emotion, I clasped him in my arms, attempting to wake him up and tell him about my strange dream. But my husband said: "Dave, you go back to bed immediately, this is the middle of the night and we want to sleep!"

BOOM!

July 31, 2006

Leaving The Fifth Floor

While crossing the bridge I look up to the sky
A swarm of black starlings just flutters near by
Ascends to the building where we did not sleep
And the brigde starts to float right under my feet.

Reflections of light and of heat flow my way
Your contours define against structures that sway.
Vertigo is tangling me all up in blue
Five floors are too grave to fall down on you!

Why don´t I turn back and obey to my heart
That screams like a child we should not be apart?
Why do I ignore the strong pulse beat of faith
That fiercely breaks through white November haze?

Another step backwards and you´ll disappear
Behind cubical monuments witnessing fear.
My legs take a flight for I try to escape
The terrible brightness of love and fate.

How did you survive when the avalanche came?
Did you run for cover by calling my name?
I think that I heard you, once deep in the night
So I plucked up my courage and did what felt right.

Them Younger Selves





Imagine a castle on top of a hill
Inside there two lovers in a junction of will.
Their minds soar up high as they loll ´round the sill
Chatting and flirting, enjoying the chill.



Fine snow is absorbing the starlight of night
But lovers are laughing and shining so bright.
A fleeting glimpse on what´s true and what´s right
In the lap of luxury flourishes light.

No angst is around and the world seems so kind,
They cherish keen feelings and hopes on their minds.
And while visions of common fortune unwind
It’s them younger selves that they suddenly find.

****************************

July 30, 2006

Lecon n° 71: Badiner avec l´amour.

"Villages" by John Updike

I just finished John Updike´s novel "Villages".
Someone gave that book to me a few months ago, telling me I should read it so I would be much wiser afterwards. At first I didn´t feel like reading it, then I left the book lying about on my bedside table for another three weeks, but finally attacked it and read it rather quickly. The first John Updike I ever read, by the way.

Now I´m quite perplexed, wondering: Is it a good or a bad book?

The language is brilliant, dissecting. Words just fall into place. Waves of descriptive images and little scenes pass by like perfect fluffy clouds in the sky. And Owen is so egomanically absorbed by his sexual longings that I just can´t but like him. But the plot...??

Why does the hero aka Owen Mackenzie leave his wife and his four pubescent children in the end to be with his second wife Julia? Why does his first wife Phyllis have to die in a pseudo-fateful car accident after a last attempt of holding him back? Why does a sex-maniac like Owen (or is he just like every man out there?) more or less lose his sexual appetite and lust after he finally gets and marries the right woman (or: what is Julia to him, in fact?)? Is Updike trying to get a moral message across (um, probably not...)? Or did he just run out of ideas while trying to put an end to a story that has a very strong start, a partly interesting centrepiece but a motley, loose déjà-vu ending???


And finally: How comes that a book that is mainly about a selfish, inventive computer-nerd screwing as much neighbourhood women as possible in most diverse ways and positions all through his married life until he finally divorces and surrenders to monogamy leaves me so completely unaffected? I mean, selfish, inventive computer-freaks usually do stimulate my imagination in some ways, plus drastic and detailed descriptions of how a man and a woman *play around with each other* do quite easily arouse my senses, and this book is packed with that stuff but... it just doesn´t really work on me...


One exception, though: The scene in Chapter IV - Young Owen tries to please nice little Elsie in the car (he´s completely dressed, kissing and licking her naked body in abandon and wonder) - is fairly horny (in my opinion, much more than the ever-more plastic and explicit sex exercises of his grown-up years). Urged me to make love immediately after I read it... Or was that simply due to the fact that I read it during a hot and cosy Sunday siesta?

Well, well, anyway... It´s late now, and too hot again.

Maybe there´s anybody out there who has also read the book and likes to reply?

July 27, 2006

Falling Apart















I like the idea of falling apart
So I glance at your face and try to find out.
You´re looking bewildered, adventurous at heart
How long will it take us before we get loud?

We go to the venue, men staring at me
I cling to your eyes, they are holding me tight.
Your voice is embracing my needs to be free
The scent of my centre is flowing tonight.

Much later we struggle in joy and in fear
Two violet feathers you brought along.
Surrender will come, it is already near
Our heart knots untie and we know we are strong.

*********************************
Photo: Feather Drop 2 by bonsaikiptb
Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/bonsaikiptb/49488910/

July 25, 2006

Green Laces Of Floss

Who´s spinning the wheel with green laces of floss
Entangling my mind all-around?
What´s pressing me forward in evermore loss
Ties me up with some terrible bound?

Will I ever be able to find an approach
To finally cut in the plot
That drowned my poor heart, suffocated and torched
Will I finally break up the knot?

Green laces of floss are so hard to untie
Their beauty and force are too frank.
Green laces of floss never really go by
Their strings are intended to rank.



Faversham Creek



















Alongside windy narrow trails unfolds a litte creek
a woodshed and a weathered cottage, sailing boats asleep.
Your twinkling eyes encourage me to stroke your boyhound grounds
And I look back at you in smiles, my heart, it takes a leap.

The harbour lies in April sun, all ships have different faces
Some marked by sorrow, some by joy, some others by harsh races.
Old cutter´s stuck down in the mud, we try to wake it up
I talk to you so tenderly and hope to leave some traces.

We stroll down to the shoreline then, serenity is ours
Talking in silence is our gift plunged into golden hours.
It´s obvious and it´s dangerous, but we don´t hesitate
And as for me I know my love exceeds all water powers.

We know reversal will approach, we know the breeze will spring
And bring us numb and rainy days and amputate our wings,
We feel it coming from afar not knowing yet how near,
Still we enhance and please ourselves with dreams of Queens and Kings.

Oh Lover, how can I withstand the memories of this day
When you said to me solemnly you´d never slip away?
Although you stumbled in the storm, you´ll always be close-by
Despite my wound ripped up afresh one hazy day in May.

*************************

Photo by P8050422
Source: http://www.flickr.com/search/?s=int&q=oare+creek&m=text



By The River









Walking by the river
Memories cross my mind
Of how I used to listen and shiver at his side.

Talking of his visions
Sharing them with me
Making some decisions – how proud I used to be!

Never thought I´d loose him
Never thought he´d run
Away from me so fiercely and leave me in the dawn.

**********************

Photo by Hans van Reenen
Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/heimatiater/

July 24, 2006

Shark Island

The Island of Shark is a dangerous place
But we entered the gate from the west.
We sat down to talk, to be quiet or to dance
But one touch of our hands got us caught in the race.

Big ships passed us by, lethargic and slow,
Triggering bow waves so high.
While we gradually thought about swaying our lives
The patter of rain intervened in the flow.

Those lines on your face they rewound all my past
When I was naive and carefree,
Yet I haughtily opened my heart on that day
And allowed us to rise to the challenge at last.

And then we decided to cross all the bridge
With a sparkle so strong that it hurt.
What was it I gave then but never got back
When we dared to climb up to the ridge?

Yes, the Island of Shark is a dangerous place
But it´s one that I had to traverse.
I´ve lost all my hopes and fears all at once
In those terrible days of grace.

The Art of Stating The Obvious

Stating the obvious, some difficult art,
It is only reserved to the cat-eyed smart.

Now you think you can´t take it, you think you will weep,
`Cause you don´t find the force to wake from your sleep.

It can be about love, it can be about hate,
Nevermind though, it´s not an eternal state.

Keep jaguars from running, let penguins fly high,
But then lift up your eyes from the ground to the sky.

Wonderland Dame

I love wonderland tales
They are working for me
When I choose to believe them
They make me feel free.

I love wonderland games
They are lifting me up
When I choose to persist
I can go to the top.

I love wonderland ways
They are making me high
When I choose to join in
They allow me to fly.

I´m a wonderland dame
Don´t you say it ain´t true
And the first thing I´ll do is:
I´ll prove it to you!