in the arsehole of diogenes

NEO-HERACLITUS_____________Qweir Notions in the arsehole of Diogenes: weBlog of a septuagenarian Binge-thinker since February 2008.
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Saturday, 30 November 2019

Religious art with a dazzling political overtone.



12th century altar-front from the Catalan church of Sant Martí de Gia
showing St Martin of Tours on his death-bed dismissing the Devil
who has appeared to the 81-year old saint in his final and fatal fever.
The unwrinkled blanket displays the colours of the Kingdom of Aragon,
whose patron saint is...St Martin.

Friday, 29 November 2019

Dilettantes are less and less acceptable.

I have an intelligent interest in
Trees and shrubs
Plants generally
Dogs
Middle Eastern and North African rugs
Middle Eastern and North African music
Middle Eastern (and any) vegetarian cuisine
Indian, European, Japanese, Middle Eastern and North African classical music
Irish slow airs
Balkan traditional musics
Folk-Fusion jazz (especially North African)
Ceramics (world-wide, non-industrial)
Pre-modern European diet
Landscape that is not flat
Painting, from Roman to contemporary
Iconography and the metamorphosis of motifs
Romanesque 'marginal' sculptures
Megaliths
Literary novels and political thrillers
Poetry of the exalted kind
Poetry of the honest kind
Fascinating facts (such as that the Prague-Vienna express train has a fresh orchid in each of its toilets)
Corkscrews (I have reduced my collection to around 50)
Linguistics and toponymy (place-names)
Experimental photography
'Vernacular' architecture from corbelled hen-houses to substantial farmhouses
Distilled fruit alcohols such as those made from quinces, sorb-apples, blackberries, holly-berries...

       ...and so on.

But few people that I meet are interested in more than one of these -
which is why I am somewhat solitary.

But, my widowed neighbour Josette Porquelette has feelings of the same order.
She even understands some of the complexities of the Irish Border!


Thursday, 28 November 2019

Why do I remember

the botanical names of plants
and less than 5% of my life ?

Why was the vodka-and-tomato-juice drink called
Bloody Mary
and not Blood of the Lamb ?

Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Tuesday, 26 November 2019

I am only my passport.

Most people define themselves by an imposed (or, if they are lucky, chosen) identity -
something I never wanted or understood. I remain undefined,
except by the passport I would rather not have to have.
Am I 'socially blind' ?

Sunday, 24 November 2019

Adults are shallow and cold

like mass graves.  They need to be so
to make out of wrinkles
the half-born children
who, in asylums of words,
wash the world dry.
Schools are parers of ruins.

Saturday, 23 November 2019

Water is Truth -

to drink and to drown in.
We are the only creatures
to know and deny the desiccating truth
that we are Death,
heart-wizened, face-painted
bedizened destroyers.

(Nor is truth a reversible raincoat.)

Friday, 22 November 2019

Thursday, 21 November 2019

The wabi-sabi of Google.

If you look up wabi-sabi in Google images
you will see a completely different
- and far better - set of pictures
from that which you will see
on looking up the Japanese  侘 寂


Wednesday, 20 November 2019

Putting it yet another way :

for all our self-proclaimed intelligence
we are the roughest, toughest, stupidest of beasts
wrecking the world through sheer intransigence.


Tuesday, 19 November 2019

It is not difficult to imagine

that what we know as 'floaters' flitting through
the aqueous humour of our eyes
would have been for millennia interpreted instead
by some as spirits of the air, or of the dead.

Monday, 18 November 2019

Sunday, 17 November 2019

Saturday, 16 November 2019

Wallace Stevens said

(or rather wrote that) the self
is "a substitute for all the gods."
And - I would add - an outrage
against natural humility.  And all our selves
pollute the world with terrible imagination,
murderous alphabets, accursèd languages,
repulsive rivalries, our pride, our money.

The planet will spin on unpaid;
the shroud above its crust will be our filthy bed.

Thursday, 14 November 2019

The thing about dolls

and stuffed animals
is that they feel no pain.
We treat each other like dolls
and animals as if they had no sentience.

Wednesday, 13 November 2019

Silk.

The more that Nature is defeated
the less subtle we become.

Tuesday, 12 November 2019

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Saturday, 9 November 2019

Hurrah!

James Ellroy
doesn't have a cellphone, either !

Nor has he a laptop...

He likes Rachmaninov -
but does he have TV ?

Friday, 8 November 2019

Life After Death

was invented (by ghouls) to encourage
the thought that life before death is worth living.

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Unfortunately,

cities now
grow faster
than forests.

(And they are water-consumers
rather than water-conservators.)

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

"Sex"

isn’t that much better than a good sneeze –
though it can last longer.

There's nothing like a good sneeze...
and then there's ear-cleaning
and foot massage...
and having your back scratched...
and tantric pissing...

Only the unsensual obsess about "sex".

Monday, 4 November 2019

Pascal's strange Apologia.

"The simple application of reason tells us that we are a  hateful species.
The only religion that teaches us to hate ourselves is Christianity.

So no other religion can be considered
by those who know that they deserve nothing but hatred."

But, of course, if we already accept that we are a hateful species
we don't need help from hypocritical Christianity.

Sunday, 3 November 2019

Horatio Walpole, 4th Earl of Orford,

son of the first British prime minister, genteel,
asexual author of the first Gothic Novel (The Castle of Otranto)
wrote more than once in his vast correspondence:
this world is a comedy to those that think,
and a tragedy to those that feel. 

Saturday, 2 November 2019

I am not as knowledgeable as I thought,

and, being almost square,
have never moved in the right circles.
I still have no idea how Club Sandwiches
differs from other kinds. Nor do I care
enough to look it up on Google Images.


Friday, 1 November 2019

There are few memorable epigrams by Stalin,

apart from his reply to French Foreign minister Pierre Laval's suggestion
that he might gain the Vatican's favour if he stopped persecuting Catholics in the USSR :

"And how many divisions does His Holiness command ?"

On the other hand,
The powerless Lev Trotsky is very quotable:

The end may justify the means provided that something justifies the end.

England is nothing but the last ward of the European madhouse, and quite possibly it will prove to be the ward for particularly violent cases.

Our planet is being turned into a filthy and evil-smelling imperialist barrack.

"The United States is not only the strongest, but also the most terrified country." 

Bureaucracy and social harmony are inversely proportional to each other.

Revolutions are always verbose.

The creative union of the conscious with the unconscious is what one usually calls 'inspiration.'