Dingo the Dissident

THE BLOG OF DISQUIET : Qweir Notions, an uncommonplace-book from the Armpit of Diogenes, binge-thinker jottings since 2008 .

Saturday 30 May 2020

Black is sheer brilliance.

Why hasn’t anyone written a story from the view that Man is a blemish on the cosmos 
who ought to be eradicated?'  - H.P. Lovecraft.

'The Universe' is just an impenetrable thought.

Is there a gene for the sense of humour ?

Friday 29 May 2020

On language and thought.

‘A great many people think they are thinking
when they are really rearranging their prejudices.’

(attributed to William James, and quoted in Daniel Everett's article about language in Aeon.)

Nobody except me seems to think that language
(and indeed thought) might be unfortunate developments
which we are stuck with...

On the other hand, on language depends a sense of humour,
evidence of sanity and a sense of proportion
which the brave Diogenes had 'in spades'.  

Thursday 28 May 2020

Narcissus revisited

Archæologists now think
that the disaster of human language
appeared around the same time as the Olduvai Axe.
One word can  sum up the essence of humanity,
every technological advance, every war, every 'brilliant idea' :

and our glorious revolution against evolution
amounts only to the 'progression' from
looking at our ugly faces in pools of water
to looking at them via a cellphone camera
and a defoliated planet.

Monday 25 May 2020

The discreet charm of superstition.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Tiger bone wine 
(Chinese虎骨酒pinyinHǔ gǔ jiǔ
is an alcoholic beverage originally produced in China using bone from tigers as main ingredient. 
The production process takes approximately eight years and results in a high alcohol concentration. According to traditional Chinese medicine, the specific use of certain body parts is capable of healing diseases according to the characteristics of the animal used to obtain the product, that is believed to be connected with the disease of the person...

... Tiger farms are located in China,South East Asia and South Africa.[6] In February 2018, these facilities were estimated to host more than 8,000 tigers, double the number in the wild. An investigation in Thailand led to the discovery of a disguised tiger farm with an income of about 3 million dollars a year. In a raid in 2016, Thai authorities seized the 137 tigers in a temple that lead to the discovery of tiger parts and 40 dead tiger cubs which were about to be used for wines and medical purposes...

I couldn't quite "get the hang"

of heterosexuality.  Nor, in the bitter end,
of  homosexuality.  But now I have
very much "got the hang" of
senile, erotic asexuality.

Sunday 24 May 2020

'In the steps of' Diogenes ?

When I learned that "refugee food"
in the Middle Eastern camps was
tomatoes, onions and egg with flat-bread,
I realised that I had, once a week for years,
been enjoying "the food of the dispossessed".

Saturday 23 May 2020

Jules Boissière: The Buddha (from the Occitan)

A poem about the  French colonisation of  what is now Viêt-Nam,
but was then Indo-China or Cochin-China,
translated by A.Z. Foreman

Our soldiers won then torched a domicile.

The owner with his sons ran half a mile
Under gunfire. On the ancestors' altar
Not guarding the old creeds or their old shelter,
The Buddha gave the wolfish men a smile.

How many hours has it been since! Where now

Is that house? Where's the pudgy god whose brow
And smile are sign of fate's indifferent law?
When man beneath mute Heaven prays or cries
I see again that Buddha's ruddy jaw,
His moonlike face and his too tranquil eyes.

Audio of Mr Foreman reading this poem in Occitan:

The Original:

Though Boissière was a native speaker of Lengadocian (Languedocian) Occitan, he, like the rest of his generation, wrote in Provençal Occitan, specifically the variety of Rhodanian (Rhône Valley) Provençal which had been raised to literary status in the late 19th century  by Mistral and others among the Félibrige movement. I give the poem in original Roumanille-Mistralian orthography, copied directly from Li Gabian, and in the more recent 'classicising' orthography. .

Classical Orthography

Lo Boddha
Juli Boïssièra

Brulavan un ostau, nòstei soudards   vincèires;

— Lo mèstre ambé sei fius peralin   fugissiá
Sota la fusilhada; e sus l'autar dei   rèires,
Luènh d'aparar l'ostau, l'autar e lei   vièlhs crèires,
Ais òme' alobatits lo Boddha sorrisiá

Quant d'ora' an debanat desempèi! Monte es ara

L'ostau? Monte es lo Dièu poput de   quau la cara
Sorrisenta retrais lo Sòrt indifferent?
— E sota lo cèu mut, quand l'òme   prèga e crida,
Revese dau Boddha lei gauta'   acolorida'
E sa fàcia de luna, e sei vistóns serens.

Original Lengadocian Orthography

Lou Bouddha
Juli Bouissiero

Brulavon un oustau nòsti soudard vincèire;

Lou mèstre emé si fiéu peralin fugissié
Souto la fusihado; e sus l’autar di rèire,
Liuen d’apara l’oustau, l’autar e li vièi   crèire,
Is ome aloubati lou Bouddha sourrisié.

Quant d’ouro an debana desempèi! Mounte   es aro

L’oustau? Mount es lou diéu poupu de quau   la caro
Sourrisènto retrais lou sort indiferènt?
E souto lou cèu mut, quand l’ome prègo e   crido,
Revese dóu Bouddha li gauto acoulourido,
E sa fàci de luno, e si vistoun seren.

from http://poemsintranslation.blogspot.com

Thursday 21 May 2020

"Bags for Life."

Aren't we all ?  Some of us last
only a few hours.  Others drift
in filthy alleys.  Many of us are torn.
A few of us are neatly folded up
and stored for crinkling years
by people like myself.

Wednesday 20 May 2020

Tuesday 19 May 2020

Today's might-be-good news

is that President Trump is dosing himself
with Chloroquine, a compound recommended
and used by some for Medically-Assisted Death,
and by others for the Unassisted Self-Extinguishment
which will end all woes and ills
for just one person.

The sad news
is that a huge dose is needed,
as well as anti-nausea pills.

I doubt that there has ever been

a Society for the Abolition of Souls,
because those who think that they have them
want to keep them,
and those who know that they don't have souls
don't feel the need to abolish them.
I am the founder and only member so far
of the Society for the Abolition of Goals.

Monday 18 May 2020

Sunday 17 May 2020

It is certainly not our capacity for rationality
that has made us Lords of the faltering Earth,
but our unique, irrational bloody-mindedness,
our convenient, systemic self-blindedness.

Saturday 16 May 2020

The profound philosophical difference

between "hunter-gatherers"
and "civilised people"
is that the former
(who gather and collect far more than they hunt)
do not think that they are
inherently superior to animals.

Which is why they have pretty systematically
and religiously been subject to annihilation.

Nothing good has come from thinking
that we are the highest form of evolution
or creation.

Friday 15 May 2020

'Living in the Present.'

"...the truth is
one lives in the present when the past
is too bad to remember
and the future too dreadful to contemplate."

- Ruth Rendell.

Thursday 14 May 2020

Nicolae & Elena.

is male
and not only corrupts
but, unchecked,
makes men mad.

is female
though not

is a patriarchal
social construct

but every cell in our bodies
is sexed according to our genitals.

Wednesday 13 May 2020


is on its last legs (so to speak).
This sturdy, useful word
has been banished from the language,
and replaced with ugly multiple
and such awkward locutions as
there are a number of...
Even there isa lot of would be better.

RIP Several. Gone to join Wholesome, Swell, Spiv, Stuck-up,
Alternative (USA only), Aerodrome, Hansel, Glype and Darkie

in the burgeoning dictionary of superannuated words.

Tuesday 12 May 2020

The Pandemic that Nobody Mentions

and governments do almost nothing to stop:
depression - sadness-in-thinking,
the lock-in and shut-down of melancholy,
the bitterness of being, which,
according to the World Health Organisation,
afflicts over 200 million people
who are treated like lepers or heretics.

Monday 11 May 2020

The Path

or the means
of contentment
is mainly
the abandonment
of expectation.

Sunday 10 May 2020

The Destructive Æsthetic

What we like to fool ourselves
into thinking is order
is the imposed disorder
of neatness.

Saturday 9 May 2020

Friday 8 May 2020

This photo

was taken in 1906 in South Dakota.
It comes from an article in Aeon
which makes no mention at all
of the Lakota in a cage...

William 'Buffalo Bill' Cody (third from left) alongside the author’s great-great uncle Sheriff Plunkett (right) at Deadwood in 1906. From Deadwood: 1876-1976 (2005) by Beverly Pechan and Bill Groethe/Arcadia Publishing

Thursday 7 May 2020

True intimacy

has little or nothing to do with bed
or the loins
- but a lot to do with the head.

Sunday 3 May 2020

A blog a day

keeps The Virus
(and the distant doctor) away.

A fine quotation

from the Argentinian film
Man Facing South-east (1986) :
     "They risked a resurrection
   rather than keep on listening
   to what he had to say."

Friday 1 May 2020

I can say it only now

when I am 78: I would have been okay with dying
70 years ago when I was a happy little boy.
Given the choice - would I have been glad to die
(peacefully and painlessly of course) when I was 8,
before my happiness was hacked away by hierarchy ?

I was an introspective child, so perhaps I would have.
But I'm still living - now quite happily again
(and thinking as old people do about my past)
and quite content for each day to be my last.

My 18-year old self (reading Ibsen, Kafka Dostoyevsky)
would have been quite pleased at how I live now,
in the south of France, with a small but adequate income,
in what I consider to be winter wood-burning,
summer cool-breezy, wine-drinking luxury
close to trees and water, still reading voraciously with great pleasure
(currently White Nights by Dostoyevsky),
scribbling daily thoughts and observations on scraps of paper
some of which become my daily blogs (since February 2008),
surrounded by ceramics, paintings, rugs, plants...

Until that age I told everyone who questioned me
that I wanted to be a doctor - since that was what was expected of me
by my semi-medical family.
By 18, however, I had begun consciously to drift.
Even if I had had the mathematical abilities to matriculate for medicine
I would have dropped out - as I later did from philosophy.
I'd have made a terrible doctor - though perhaps a competent researcher.

I can't think what I would have been good at
apart from the home-maker that I am
and played at being well before the age of eight.
Maybe a weather-watcher like my mother.
Perhaps a literary copy-editor. I would have been excellent at that.
My 18-year old self would have regretted
my failure to be a prize-winning poet
(itself sufficient reason for suicide).
But I have no regrets or shame at being blessed by fate
for 60 years: a quietly-creative, shiftless (but not witless)
burden on the planet and (thanks to the European Union)
more than one nation-state.