Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Monday, July 19, 2010
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Twenty-eight years of womanly life and all so lonesome.
She owns the fine house by the rise of the bank,
She hides handsome and richly drest aft the blinds of the window.
Which of the young men does she like the best?
Ah the homeliest of them is beautiful to her.
Where are you off to, lady? for I see you,
You splash in the water there, yet stay stock still in your room.
Dancing and laughing along the beach came the twenty-ninth bather,
The rest did not see her, but she saw them and loved them.
The beards of the young men glisten'd with wet, it ran from their long
Little streams pass'd over their bodies.
An unseen hand also pass'd over their bodies,
It descended trembling from their temples and ribs.
The young men float on their backs, their white bellies bulge to the sun,
they do not ask who seizes fast to them,
They do not know who puffs and declines with the pendant and bending
They do not think whom they souse with spray.
Song of Myself, XI
by Walt Whitman
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Not the saint
at the painting's center,
but the face
of the boy half blocked
by his mother's shoulder.
Not that huge gate
but the pin on the hinge.
carved stones placed inside
The village of women
across the mountain,
into the husband's shoes.
The boy is
watching the hawk
glimpsing the rabbit.
The rabbit is savoring
the half-nibbled flower.
Because the grass is wet
we know it is morning.
The mother holds
purple grapes in her hand,
in case her son
grows restless or hungry.
when it is over,
it will be hot,
but by then
the dark-nosed donkey
will be asleep.
-"Of Durable Kindness" by Jane Hirshfield The Lives of the Heart
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
The young composer, working that summer at an artist's colony, had watched her for a week. She was Japanese, a painter, almost sixty, and he thought he was in love with her. He loved her work, and her work was like the way she moved her body, used her hands, looked at him directly when she made amused and considered answers to his questions.
One night, walking back from a concert, they came to her door and she turned to him and said, "I think you would like to have me. I would like that too, but I must tell you that I have had a double mastectomy," and when he didn't understand, "I've lost both my breasts." The radiance that he had carried around in his belly and chest cavity- like music - withered very quickly, and he made himself look at her when he said, "I'm sorry. I don't think I could."
He walked back to his own cabin through the pines, and in the morning he found a small blue bowl on the porch outside his door. It looked to be full of rose petals, but he found when he picked it up that the rose petals were on top, the rest of the bowl - she must have swept from the corners of her studio - was full of bees.
Robert Hass " A Story About the Body"
Image via Bloom
Monday, July 5, 2010
This year instead of our usual tradition of eating too many hot dogs and suffering through the heat and fireworks, we spent the Fourth of July at a strangely empty resort at the foot of the mountain. As we wandered about the quiet grounds and admired the freshly set banquet tables outside the white pavilion, we mused that it felt like someone had planned a party and then the volcano had erupted. The stillness combined with the careful maintenance of the place gave everything an unreal, magical air.
In the evening we watched the clouds roll in silently over the hills. The forest was quiet and cool, and we had a delicious dinner with wine and oysters and Spanish guitar. I fell asleep watching the flames in the fireplace, and listening to a conversation in Russian drifting in from outside and through the fir trees. I felt happier than I have felt for a long time.
Posted by A. at Monday, July 05, 2010