Saturday, February 28, 2009

I Don't Think This is a World for Women

I don't think this is a world for women.
I don't know. If I have a granddaughter
she may have an exceptional life.

There will be snow on the lockets, and petals
on the slim shoes. There will be other acres.
A different foliage on the islands and music
coming from places she says resemble rooms. High
arches, perhaps, not Gothic. That was in my
time. The edges were in my time and the squint
of the elevators ascending, we knew not where.

There were gifts in my time. Gulls, sheaves, roofs
hair falling in place there by the chimney.
Falling down by the wall in the wind.

So much was held back. The uneven stones.
Brown rain with pebbles catching its breath.

Inside each breast the inscription placed
like a clock. With the memory of a clock
and its torture.

The hands were yours, never mine.

The continent repeated its little whistle and spun
around. The continent was told it was made of sugar
and ice. The continent was an idea of yours.

So was the weather and the months.
The years belonged to you because you discovered them.
You taught us to tell time.

If I have a granddaughter
may she stand outside a telephone booth,
may she have her private telephone,
may she never wish to use the telephone,
may she own the telephone company,
may she be the long distance or the receiver,
may she sleep with a telephone,
may she say goodbye on the telephone.
may she be lucky and be a telephone.

Barbara Guest

:via Memory Book
:girl pointing at sky via flickr

Happy Clouds

Stuart Semple: HappyCloud. Soap + helium smiley faces released over London last Wednesday.

"I just wanted to make a piece of work that would cheer people up a bit. I've had enough of the doom and gloom in the air and I wanted to show something completely positive floating up to the sky. This was the most straight forward way I could think of to literally contribute something happy to the atmosphere. I'm hoping it might put a smile on a few people's faces as they go through their day. I'm also keen to help people remember that the success of British cultural industries is relatively new, the Tate itself wasn't there a decade ago. I believe these cultural industries have been hugely important in the re-juvination of parts of the city, and a very wholesome and important contributor to the economy. I know at times like this it's easy to make creativity a low priority but I want to show that on a very human level an artistic idea might be able to do something important even for a fleeting moment."

: posted today on the awesome blog even cleveland

Friday, February 27, 2009


:via found

Thursday, February 26, 2009

from: IV Quatre Poems

my way is in the sand flowing
between the shingle and the dune
the summer rain rains on my life
on me my life harrying fleeing
to its beginning to its end

my peace is there in the receding mist
when I may cease from treading these long shifting thresholds
and live the space of a door
that opens and shuts

Samuel Beckett

:via flickr

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Dark Sky Parks

If it is dark
when this is given to you,
have care for its content
when the moon shines.

Moon, moon
when you leave me alone
all the darkness is
an utter blackness.

from A Form of Women , Robert Creeley

Owachomo Bridge, Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah
:photo, Jim Richardson/National GeographicStock
:Image, The dark skies above Galloway Forest Park, Scotland, the Guardian
:via Bldg Blog

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Shelf Life

William Stout Architectural Books San Francisco

You might be reading this online, but an architectural bookstore in San Francisco is a reminder that there’s nothing like beautifully printed matter.

Stout's favorite quote from Balzac: “I seldom go out but when I feel myself flagging I go and cheer myself up in Pere Lachaise … while seeking out the dead I see nothing but the living.”
Surrounded by these volumes — some slim, some massive, some lush with color photography, some filled with impenetrable academic jargon — Stout felt inspired, in love, in awe, much as Balzac did wandering past the tombstones in that Parisian graveyard.

And Yet The Books

And yet the books will be there on the shelves, separate beings,
That appeared once, still wet
As shining chestnuts under a tree in autumn,
And, touched, coddled, began to live
In spite of fires on the horizon, castles blown up,
Tribes on the march, planets in motion.
“We are, ” they said, even as their pages
Were being torn out, or a buzzing flame
Licked away their letters. So much more durable
Than we are, whose frail warmth
Cools down with memory, disperses, perishes.
I imagine the earth when I am no more:
Nothing happens, no loss, it’s still a strange pageant,
Women’s dresses, dewy lilacs, a song in the valley.
Yet the books will be there on the shelves, well born,
Derived from people, but also from radiance, heights.

Czeslaw Milosz

: By Design Allison Arieff, New York Times

Monday, February 23, 2009

"There's a little place, a place called space..."

Yes, here's Patti Smith reading the recent Cambridge Companion to Wallace Stevens. The photograph was taken by Lawrence Schwartzwald, who just happened to see this and marvel at the apt juxtaposition.
Al Filreis

Not Ideas About the Thing But the Thing Itself

At the earliest ending of winter,
In March, a scrawny cry from outside
Seemed like a sound in his mind.

He knew that he heard it,
A bird's cry at daylight or before,
In the early March wind

The sun was rising at six,
No longer a battered panache above snow . . .
It would have been outside.

It was not from the vast ventriloquism
Of sleep's faded papier mâché . . .
The sun was coming from outside.

That scrawny cry—it was
A chorister whose c preceded the choir.
It was part of the colossal sun,

Surrounded by its choral rings,
Still far away. It was like
A new knowledge of reality.

Wallace Stevens

photo credit: Lawrence Schwartzwald/Splashnews