we are painted ladies
nectaring on thistle
and coming into gardens.
we are white admirals
soaring between trees
and laying eggs on honeysuckle.
we are purple emperors
feeding on the sap from
tree trunks and salt in dung.
Eén mens zijn is een cel,
ik zijn is niet zijn.
Ik zal vluchtend moeten leven,
maar het zal écht leven zijn.
I thank my parents for never suggesting it might be a good idea for me to join the Scouts.
Dutch children on their way to a ‘dropping’.
i am so deeply and completely sad, sadder than i’ve ever been in my life. every sub-atomic particle that constitutes me is suffused by it. what saved me is that because my idea/thought/feeling about what ‘my self’ is has radically changed since i last felt sad, probably 15 years ago, my relation to the sadness is quite different than it was then. i can more or less observe it most of the time. i am able to feel sad without being sad.
i asked mother if this is the same scarf simone de beauvoir was wearing in the picture henri cartier-bresson took of her in paris in 1947.
my mother never says ‘i don’t know’ in response to a question.
no, she said, that’s a different scarf. and she is younger here.
i thought i might have uncovered another photograph from the same session. so was this picture taken during the war then?
and the bigger question : do you believe what your mother says?
my father was a notorious liar — it was also said of him that he would tell you whatever he thought you wanted to hear, which i’d have to say can be a useful tool in conversations with some people — and, as i discovered only a week or two ago : he was a thief.
or so my mother tells me.
i was interested in at least two aspects of the space exploration buzz that’s been on all the tv channels in connection with the you know what and one of them was the voice of i believe borman (not martin the other one, the astronaut) but i might be wrong, anyway it was one of the apollo 8 guys he flew to the moon and back saying that human beings are not so special and such and musing about the relative minisculity … is that a word … of this planet in the context of the vastness of the universe. it’s the only voice i’ve heard that counters the prevalent tired notion that human beings must be fucking marvellous because they can fly to the moon and back. the worst part was that they chose genesis the first ten verses of to read out as the earth was rising from their point of view on christmas eve and ‘the entire world’ i.e. a lot of people in america was listening in. the apollo 8 psychonauts were the first humans to ever see this. if only they had read from thomas ligotti’s psychogenesis! have you read it? the other thing was they had cameras inside the borman house during the entire apollo 8 flight and it was like very early extreme reality television but all shot on film in gorgeous sixties saturated technicolor virtually no dialogue just extended takes close ups of the faces of the wives who had all gathered there. mrs. borman spent three months in a psych hospital a few years later but she came out fully cured and feeling better than ever, so she tells it. now where is that ligotti text?! there. oh wait 1969. he hadn’t written it yet.
Every work turns against its maker. The poem annihilates the poet.