pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)

There's a funny story in John Richardson's biography, A Life of Picasso. Pablo Picasso was notorious for sucking all the energy out of the people he met. His granddaughter Marina claimed that he squeezed people like one of his tubes of oil paints. You'd have a great time hanging out all day with Picasso, and then you'd go home nervous and exhausted, and Picasso would go back to his studio and paint all night, using the energy he'd sucked out of you.

Most people put up with this because they got to hang out with Picasso all day, but not Constantin Brancusi, the Romanian-born sculptor. Brancusi hailed from the Carpathian Mountains, and he knew a vampire when he saw one. He was not going to have his energy or the fruits of his energy juiced by Picasso, so he refused to have anything to do with him.

-- Austin Kleon, Show Your Work!

This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/142248.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
In the course of thanking Bishop for some Brazilian champagne that helped rescue a party with thwarted matchmaking and sullen guests:


I sound like notes for a Mary McCarthy novel. Have you read her last in which Mary (divorced and remarried) is seduced by Wilson (divorced and remarried) after a Wellfleet reading of Racine's Berenice? In the last chapter Mary driving to Boston for an abortion is run into and killed by a red-headed Millay-like Cape poet driving on the wrong side of the road. Who can doubt that Mary really lives in her books? If she ever loses her mind, she'll never know which parts of her life she lived and which she wrote. She is somehow rather immense without her books ever being exactly good form or good imagination.


This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/409804.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)


"When I can see problems and solutions others can't, it makes other people angry. I realize that it's not enough to identify the difficulties and know what must be done. One must convey the proper course to those who have the problem, so they might see the way as if they had discovered it themselves. [My sister] Jenny explained it to me, but I lack the ability to accomplish her ends, try though I might."

He gentled his hold, because she'd guessed correctly: he was angry, but not at her. "And if you cannot defer to those of lesser insight, Wife? Are you to keep silent and do nothing?"

Another sigh followed by a silence. Silence at least suggested Louisa was considering Joseph's question, and it meant he could hold her a while longer.

"I used to wish I would wake up one day and be less intelligent," she said, sounding very weary. "That is, of course, blasphemy, but I don't like making people feel angry and stupid, and I like even less when they must try to impose those emotions on me in retaliation."



This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/408174.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)

People gathered from near and far,
In small groups and large,
To share their fears and grief
And the darkness in their hearts.

A year like no other, this was,
Testing us beyond what we'd ever imagined.
Day after day, week after week,
We found ourselves growing
And becoming sturdy
Because there was no other choice.


[I sang this years ago. Something I learned today: the ritual it comes from was co-written by a Unitarian Universalist and "a self-described Quaker witch" (source: http://indysolstice.com).]

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/406596.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
The subject line's from "Brooklyn Blurs," a song by/in The Paper Raincoat. I heard Alex Wong perform it with Megan Slankard in a house concert back in March, and he mentioned at an Angelhouse Family Dinner that he would probably play it during his Basement gig last Saturday.

I'd hoped to go to that show, but Other Things Happened. I'd hope to see tonight's ASL-interpreted performance of the Scottish play, but Other Things Had To Get Done. I have a suspiciously sore throat that I'm hoping won't get in the way of Things I Gotta Get To and Through within the next week. Mann traoch, Gott lauch.

There is a metal screwcap perched on my handbag. I am perplexed - none of the bottles in the cabinets or on the counters appear to be missing their stoppers or lids, nor is there an open bottle of wine - but not enough to feel like I have to figure it out before I head to bed. Though it's all too likely that my brain will seize on some aspect of this to turn into a tanka or triolet a couple of hours from now, and that will get me out of bed to type out the words before they evaporate.

IMG_1091

This week's Tarotscope urged me to embrace change. ... I broke in my new pair of swim goggles this week. I tried buti yoga last week. I'm looking at dance classes around town -- it's going to be a full day if I try to attend the Muslim hip hop doubleheader that's scheduled for the same Saturday as the Early Autumn Day of English country dancing, but it looks doable and is therefore tempting.

I am contemplating iron-on vines, to cover a stain on a gooseneck rocking chair I acquired last week at the Habitat ReStore for $25. My current tomato cutting + pepper cullings look sunburnt in their beakers and jars, so I'm thinking of throwing out the lot. I am thankful that I had limes on hand this morning, as I was again careless about gloving up before dealing with Prairie Fire seeds and ended up giving myself an invisible moustache of a burn. The zinnias are thriving:

IMG_1105

This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/136755.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
The subject line is from a letter Elizabeth Bishop wrote to Robert Lowell on November 1, 1974. As is this:


(For a poet, I am sometimes amazingly practical--as John M. Brinnin remarked the other day, when, after a night's consideration, I turned down taking over the late Anne Sexton's job at B.U.--Once a week; 4 or 6 people; but I figured out how little I'd actually earn, what with more taxes, remembered how tired I get with the two classes I have; and then began wondering how I'd ever get along with the students that had been attracted to Anne, and decided I wouldn't . . .) Then I attended a memorial service fro her in the BU chapel--it was well-meant, but rather awful--and after hearing a few of her students reminisce, I knew I'd been absolutely right--especially as to the last reason. It is very sad--and deplorable pieces are appearing everywhere, about her.


On a more cheerful note, the Frist Center is holding its member and media previews for Women, Art, and Social Change: The Newcomb Pottery Enterprise today, and the exhibition opens to the general public tomorrow. The "people I want to read yet more about when time permits" list includes Harriet Coulter Joor and several other women featured in the show. It'll be in Nashville through the start of November.

This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/135031.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
The subject line's from Marianne Moore's Baseball and Writing. The two quotes below are from Elizabeth Bishop to Lowell. July 10, 1967:


Well -- the Village will rejuvenate me, no doubt. I never appear without earrings down to my bosom, skirts almost up to it, and a guitar over my shoulder. I am afraid I am going to start writing FREE VERSE next . . .


July 27, 1967:


Just as I came in now Bob G called inviting me to lunch next week to meet R Straus (whom I've met, but no one, including me, remembers the meeting at all) and the famous Miss Sontag . . . This is almost too much for one day, particularly as I have to be bright and energetic for idnner with Anny that same night. I thought in the SUMMER in N.Y. one could avoid this kind of thing, but apparently not. I do think that was marvellous -- Marianne demanding a "house call" and almost unable to speak at 12 noon, yesterday, and then refusing all help and going to a baseball game. I don't think I can bear to tell on her . . . I always thought she'd die one day on the Brooklyn Express; now I think she'll die in the bleachers.


This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/134856.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
From Soshitsu Sen's Chado: The Japanese Way of Tea (1979):


The charcoal is arranged in a set pattern in the container. The long, white sticks are charcoal made from azalea branches and painted with gesso. The black charcoal is made from any of a variety of woods (20).



The artisan who crafts the scoops will usually give a specific poetic name to each, such as "Outgoing Boat," "Incoming Boat," "Spring Wind," "Firefly," "Demon's Arm," and so on (26).


This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/134567.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
This morning's bathtub reading was supplied by the first 56 pages of the August issue of GQ, which includes Michael Paterniti's ode to Yotam Ottolenghi. This passage in particular caught my eye:


The immediate impression of the trio [Ottolenghi, NOPI head chef Ramael Scully, and recipe developer Esme Howarth] made was of friendliness -- how well suited to one another they were, and how soft-spoken and solicitous Ottolenghi was.

"Would you like some tea and cookies?" he asked, and without waiting for an answer he went rummaging to retrieve some. I'd been served so much Ottolenghi food by others, and now Ottolenghi himself was serving me cookies. This seemed to be the opposite of Gordon Ramsay. This was the opposite of the matador chefs and their brash opining. In fact, if you could say anything about Yotam Ottolenghi, you might say he contained multitudes: a sweet temperament and fierce intensity, iron discipline and wild creativity.


In checking on whether the piece was online, I found a speech by Paterniti on storytelling, which includes this anecdote:



I have an unofficial contest going with some writer friends, to see who can ask the stupidest question EVER without meaning to, and I think I recently won. I was interviewing the chef Yotam Ottolenghi in London, and at the risk of never being asked to go on assignment again, I'm going to quote my question, verbatim:

So I'm just--butternut! Butternut squash, broccoli polenta, pearled lemon, that idea of, and sometimes this happens at the ridiculous high-end restaurant, the prawn did this, eat the whole flower, or whatever, just get that marrow, or whatever it is, up here, on the plate, all foamy, and this is what you’re doing without having to turn it into some sort of ridiculous cooky thing in these restaurants, like, maybe you could tell me: Why are we doing this!?


Seriously, how can you answer a question like this? And you know you're in trouble when the response is, as it was in Ottolenghi's case, a very long silence, a polite but quizzical expression usually reserved for the platypus tank at the zoo, and then, with pity: I think I know what you're trying to say...


As someone who dines on her foot on a regular basis and actively contemplates vows of silence every third day, I found this awfully reassuring.

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/404393.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
The subject line is from a Paris Review interview of Yves Bonnefoy, who recently passed away.

Bonnefoy's translations of Yeats's poems are on my bedside bookshelf. I quoted from the very first one I read at http://www.varytheline.org/blog/2011/12/15/a-few-old-socks-and-love-letters/.

Also from the PR interview:


What shapes the poem, what makes it what it is . . . that depends on causes which are within me already, and have been for a long time, although I am not yet aware of them. I will understand them only once the work is finished.

I must point out that I can postpone the decision to start writing for years. It's when I'm at peace with the thoughts and the images that are generated by the previous book. I will not start writing again except when I notice that the last book is no longer sufficient to express or order my relationship with the world.


This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/403566.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
Elizabeth Bishop to Robert Lowell, 18 July 1950:


Just had a visit from the Dutchman who works here & writes poetry incessantly. I hope he wasn't one of your problems too. One poem this time is about his soul fermenting in a barrel of sauerkraut. He's so grateful to God for sending him such marvelous ideas, but personally I'm afraid God is playing tricks on him.


There is no actual sauerkraut here, as I've despised the stuff all my life. What we do have on hand: kosher dill pickles, salted lemons, and capers. From generous colleagues, fire cider and dried pineapple. From the container garden, belatedly harvested radish greens and arugula, tempered on my stove with cream or bacon and wine vinegar, countered by a orange-skinned cherry tomato I popped into my mouth a day or three too soon. I cut down the rust-plagued hocks a few twilights ago, and in the morning shall steel myself to thin out the zinnias, if rain is not pelting down. The Christmas peppers run the gamut from stunted seedling to shriveling unharvested pod. So too my drafts. So too my sketches and lists.

This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/134129.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
(First set of notes here)

Second-half standouts:

Ruth Madievsky, "Paragard": "I was in a lecture hall, explaining how the copper IUD works..."

Brendan Constantine's conversation with Alan Fox. Among BC's provocative statements:


I just had a conversation with a poet I can't name, who was very angry because they felt that the internet was flooded with lots of mediocre poetry. Now anyone can put a badge on their shirt that says "Poet" and communicate with ohter poets and have all this great access, the world, the media, the "readers" are overwhelmed with bad work, and thus can't find or recognize where the "good" work is. That is a paranoia I don't share. It's an argument I've heard, over and over, that bad poetry somehow diminishes our joy and plight. That if the "bad" poets are allowed to publish, it destroys connoisseurship. I don't see that to be the case. I think that every great artist, like every great art critic, will die ignorant of most of the good art in their time. That's been true of virtually every generation. I mean, why else does it seem that half the work that ultimately "comes to define a generation" is discovered posthumously.


And also:


If you're lucky enough to live a good long life, you're going to see most of your cherished profundities reduced to trivia, and virtually every banality celebrated.


This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/133170.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
30 November 1954:


My poems are supposed now to come out in the early spring, I think, but Houghton Mifflin and I don't seem to be getting along too well. I am sending them the sections from this translation, because I said I would mostly, but I haven't heard yet whether they are interested or not. I sent them all my stories to date, and they dropped them like a hot potato, so if you ever go by 2 Park Street you can throw stones at their windows for me, if you want to.


This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/402673.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
From "Inside the High-Drama Life of Hamilton Impresario Oskar Eustis," by Adam Green (Vogue, March 2016 print, February 2016 online:

Among the projects Eustis is currently developing is a play based on the author Cheryl Strayed's popular online advice column "Dear Sugar," the climax of which is a letter from a man whose son was killed by a drunk driver. "She tells him, 'Your son was your greatest gift in his life and he is your greatest gift in his death too,' " Eustis says. "And in a way, you want to go, 'No! Fuck you! It's not a gift!' But what you realize is that that's the exact challenge. The loss, you can't control. It's never going to be a good thing--I'd trade fucking everything to have him alive again. And I don't get that choice. The choice I get is: What am I going to do with it?"


tomato cutting

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/401738.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.

pace

Feb. 28th, 2016 12:59 pm
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
Future Bicycle II

by Cyrus Kabiru


From the March 2016 issue of ELLE (page 410):



Adrift and Apathetic: How do I spark a desire to improve? How do I rekindle my career fire? How do I keep up with the pack?

E. Jean: Adrift, Darling: Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! Keep up with the pack? Nobody keeps up with the pack. Hell, the pack can't keep up with the pack. Even Kylie Jenner (Miss Kylie Jenner with her 45 million -- repeat, million -- Instagram followers) says she wakes up "every morning with the worst anxiety." Your primate brain -- and its precuneus, concerned with conscious and reflections upon self; and its temporoparietal junction, where thought processing and perceptions lie -- centers your attention on people above you in the pecking order. Ergo, you always feel behind.

Weirdly, you don't even register the 97 percent of the world that's trying to keep up with you and your razzle-dazzle education and art projects.

Lately I was glued to an article in the Wall Street Journal by the primatologist and neuroscientist Robert Sapolsky (I had no choice -- I'm so behind this guy in the pecking order that I'm an amoeba on the backside of a flea on the buttocks of one of his baboons) called "Brain Reflexes That Monitor the Pecking Order." Read it and you'll never fret about the pack again.


From Laura Brown's interview of Drew Barrymore, in the March 2016 issue of Harper's Bazaar:


"I don't think I'm hot right now necessarily, because I have all my irons in a bunch of different fires," Barrymore says, amused at the heavy-handedness of the metaphor. "I'm writing. I'm doing makeup. I'm doing design. I'm expanding Flower into different categories." She adds, "I think it's a huge mistake to think you have to burn bright for your whole life. You cannot sustain it. It's exhausting, and it's not very realistic."


Winemaker Jason Lett, in a 2008 interview at the Splendid Table that was rebroadcast on WPLN today:


Grape vines are a bit like human beings. As they age, the quality of what they produce goes up and the quantity goes down. These vines will continue to produce fruit for probably past their 100th year. What we're going to continue to see as that process happens is an increase in quality and a decrease in quantity.

We're already starting to see this. This vineyard is giving us maybe a ton-and-a-half to the acre every year. But the flavors are concentrated and gorgeous, so we'll keep farming this long past the time an accountant would tell me to pull it out.


This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/127922.html.

scale

Feb. 27th, 2016 09:15 am
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
I am actually in the thick of replacing a rotting deck with more house, but this quote in the March issue of Southern Living spoke to me anyway:



People get caught up in grandeur, forgetting that the best times they ever had in their lives were in tiny spaces with low ceilings and the best things ever said to them were whispered. When I design a house, I start with the site to figure out what elements you want to engage with emotionally and spiritually. Then I consider the communion of people and objects and create containment around them. My consideration is always what it's going to feel like together. Only lastly do I concern myself with what a house looks like. The only real value of building a house is to increase the territory of your own heart. The only real truth is to create something that will settle your spirit.


-- Bobby McAlpine

This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/127499.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
My week so far has included the rejection of eight poems (though one was a near-miss) and some aggravation (both of the near-to-firing-a-firm kind and the dammit-I-left-my-badge-on-the-piano variety), not to mention truly atrocious fantasy tennis results. But, I seem to be providing pleasure to assorted Kei Nishikori fans, there was plenty of butter and black pepper to mash into the neeps I boiled for supper, and I'm closing my evening with a glass of Beaujolais (slightly rough, but sanding down a bit of jag as I sip) and assorted phrases for pieces.

Also, Rattle published a poem on Sunday, both in text and audio form: "Look at that, you son of a bitch"

I also keep meaning to mention "Some Who Wander Become Lost," which the SFPA posted online a few months ago.

My calendars contain crossouts and calculations. So, for that matter, do the cards and scraps of paper containing what I might write or shape next. In the meantime, there are roses everywhere -- I saw these on Valentine's Day, just as I was about to cross White Station Road:

White Station Road, Memphis

The back of the card I picked up was blank. It has me wondering about roses not sent. It brings back memories of roses I have sent, and thrown, and pressed, and attempted to propagate (not yet successfully). Not every Emily Dickinson poem pairs up well with "Yellow Rose of Texas" ("So much of Heaven has gone from earth"? No), but it's not as if the ghosts of Amherst or Austin ever insisted on that. Perhaps the roses really want to grow. Perhaps the mallows will survive this morning's freezing fog. There is more than snow between the glass and the huge roses. There is more to work than work. Earlier this week, a colleague and I talked about trading plants later this year -- succulents for peppers. The dog knocked over one of my pots while I was away, and happily hoovered up asparagus stubs two nights ago. Cleaning. Digging. Dreaming.


A name for a new rose: Mozart.
That's what I'd call the first rose on the moon,
If I got there to grow it.

-- Robert Nye, "Travelling to My Second Marriage on the Day of the First Moonshot"


This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/126908.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
At church this morning, div school student Sara Green read some passages from Martin Luther King Jr.'s "Beyond Vietnam" speech, delivered in 1967. Two excerpts:


Even when pressed by the demands of inner truth, men do not easily assume the task of opposing their government’s policy, especially in time of war. Nor does the human spirit move without great difficulty against all the apathy of conformist thought within one’s own bosom and in the surrounding world. Moreover, when the issues at hand seem as perplexing as they often do in the case of this dreadful conflict, we are always on the verge of being mesmerized by uncertainty. But we must move on.

Some of us who have already begun to break the silence of the night have found that the calling to speak is often a vocation of agony, but we must speak. We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate to our limited vision, but we must speak. And we must rejoice as well, for surely this is the first time in our nation’s history that a significant number of its religious leaders have chosen to move beyond the prophesying of smooth patriotism to the high grounds of a firm dissent based upon the mandates of conscience and the reading of history. Perhaps a new spirit is rising among us. If it is, let us trace its movement, and pray that our inner being may be sensitive to its guidance. For we are deeply in need of a new way beyond the darkness that seems so close around us.



The war in Vietnam is but a symptom of a far deeper malady within the American spirit, and if we ignore this sobering reality, we will find ourselves organizing “clergy and laymen concerned” committees for the next generation. They will be concerned about Guatemala and Peru. They will be concerned about Thailand and Cambodia. They will be concerned about Mozambique and South Africa. We will be marching for these and a dozen other names and attending rallies without end unless there is a significant and profound change in American life and policy...

This is the role our nation has taken, the role of those who make peaceful revolution impossible by refusing to give up the privileges and the pleasures that come from the immense profits of overseas investments. I am convinced that if we are to get on to the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.


This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/125873.html.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
But the real hurdle facing "Londongrad," one I didn't expect, wasn't that it was too Western. It was that it was too Russian. A common stance among educated Russians -- the ones I imagined would enjoy "Londongrad" the most -- is to refuse to watch a series or a film simply because it's Russian. The first Twitter reactions to "Londongrad" sounded the same note, over and over: "It's watchable, probably because it wasn't filmed in Russia." "As much as I hate everything Russian, I might give this one a try." "God help me, I can't believe I am watching a Russian TV series." "I might watch it later. I'm in no mood to see my compatriots." On a site devoted to romantic fan fiction, an author expressed her shock after combining two of the lead characters' names into one, as is the custom among fanfic writers (Misha + Alisa = Milisa): It was the first time in her memory that the names were Russian.


- Michael Idov, My Accidental Career as a Russian Screenwriter

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/399960.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
As de Waal worked, his dog, Isla, sat in a corner, chewing on a torn-up plush pheasant. I asked how many dog hairs he thought had become embedded in his pots over the years. "Oh, just a wonderful number," he said.


"Thinking with His Hands," by Sam Anderson (NYT Magazine, November 29)

This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/122869.html.

Profile

pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
Peg Duthie

June 2017

S M T W T F S
    123
456 78910
11121314151617
18192021222324
252627282930 

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Aug. 20th, 2017 12:06 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios