Thursday, June 30, 2016

Mistakes? I've made a few

...To know someone who thinks & feels with us, & who, though distant, is close to us in spirit, this makes the earth for us an inhabited garden.
~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Welcome to the Poetry Friday round-up!

This week, I ran across a poem I shared in March 2015, and I wanted to bring it back for a reprise. I hope that's not a mistake!


photo by Paula Bailey

I can't remember the context, but I heard a while ago that everybody makes a mistake every hour. This idea intrigued me, so I think about it sometimes. They can't all be significant mistakes, you know? There must be a big variety. Pondering that inspired today's poem:

What Goes Wrong?
by Tabatha Yeatts

Mistakes flower
Every hour.

Ice cream, dropped.
Joke, flopped.

Tire, flatted.
Jump, splatted.

Directions, lost.
Guidance, tossed.

Trousers, muddied.
Quiz, unstudied.

Pencil, broken.
Care, unspoken.

Team, beaten.
Homework, eaten.

Laundry, pink.
Armor, chink.


Garip Ay

Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing.
~Camille Pissarro

Today, we have the Turkish art of ebru (applying paint to water, then transferring it to paper) as created by Garip Ay:

Wednesday, June 29, 2016


John Dickerson in The Case for Restraint in All Things says:
I am a fan of restraint. I think we've lost the ability to restrain ourselves and that leads to boorish behavior, bad outcomes, cruelty, and the forfeit of reason...

Restraint allows conversation between different kinds of people...

Sometimes stopping and engaging your opponent in conversation makes for a more effective debate. It certainly makes the exchange more illuminating. That requires restraint. I tend to think that most of our public debates would benefit if everyone didn't motive-judge from the outset.

I feel that way. What if, when we ran across someone who disagreed with us on a social issue, we practiced restraint? What if we assumed that people who want to vote for someone we dislike are not our enemies?

When I hear about people "fighting" against hate, it gives me pause because you are still fighting. Is there another term that we could use?

I'll use a poem to illustrate how I feel:

by Edwin Markham

He drew a circle that shut me out--
Heretic, a rebel, a thing to flout.
But Love and I had the wit to win:
We drew a circle that took him in!

Monday, June 27, 2016

Shady Grove

Peaches in the summertime
Apples in the fall
If I can't have the girl I love
I don't want none at all

A traditional Appalachian folk song today, performed by Takénobu:

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Classical I & II

...Music heard so deeply
That it is not heard at all, but you are the music
While the music lasts.
~T.S. Eliot

Two things about classical music. If you don't think you like classical music, please hang around anyway. They are short!

First, have you heard about the recent study that found listening to Mozart and Strauss can help lower your blood pressure?

Secondly, I'm sharing a quote from Tokyo’s Thriving Classical Music Culture, Part 1 by Josephine Yang. Apparently, if you have really good music education in your schools, your orchestras will thrive:
Tokyo is saturated with classical music. In just this city, there are EIGHT professional, full-time orchestras that total over 1,200 concerts a year: NHK Symphony Orchestra, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo City Philharmonic, Japan Philharmonic, New Japan Philharmonic, Tokyo Philharmonic, and Tokyo Symphony. Though the names are amusingly similar, each organization is separate and unique. In all of Japan, there are 1,600 orchestras (professional and amateur) — all in a country with a land area that’s smaller than the state of California but holds a population that’s about 40% of the United States! To put things into perspective, the United States would need about 38,000 orchestras to equal that percentage.
The last part of this piece is pretty exciting so I don't know whether it would lower your blood pressure, but here's a terrific performance by the top Japanese youth orchestra:

Friday, June 24, 2016

The Open Air of Redemption

There is something in us, as storytellers and as listeners to stories, that demands the redemptive act, that demands that what falls at least be offered the chance to be restored.
~Flannery O'Connor

Want a little magic with your reality? Coming right up...

After the Disaster
By Abigail Deutsch

New York City, 2001

One night, not long after the disaster,
as our train was passing Astor,
the car door opened with a shudder
and a girl came flying down the aisle,
hair that looked to be all feathers
and a half-moon smile
making open air of our small car.

The crowd ignored her or they muttered
“Hey, excuse me” as they passed her
when the train had paused at Rector.

read the rest here


The Poetry Friday round-up is at Random Noodling. Thanks, Diane!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Diego Rivera

I knew how one climbing the mountain of worldly success can slip down into the river below without being conscious of the descent till he is already drowning.
~Diego Rivera

I thought I wasn't going to be able to get it together enough to post anything this week, but I had last-minute inspiration. Works by Mexican artist Diego María de la Concepción Juan Nepomuceno Estanislao de la Rivera y Barrientos Acosta y Rodríguez, better known as Diego Rivera:

Self-portrait with Broad-Brimmed Hat, 1907
by Diego Rivera

The House on the Bridge, 1909
by Diego Rivera

Portrait of Adolfo Best Maugard, 1913
by Diego Rivera

Two Women (Portrait of Angelina Beloff and Maria Dolores Bastian), 1914
by Diego Rivera

Mural showing Aztec production of gold, Palacio Nacional, Mexico City
by Diego Rivera

Diego Rivera with his wife Frida Kahlo in 1932
photo by Carl Van Vechten

Friday, June 17, 2016

Chewing Amber

A father is only capable of giving what he has, and what he knows. A good father gives all of himself that is good.
~Vincent Carrella

Gum or diamond? by La FoeZ'

Happy Father's Day to the dads! We are going to New Hampshire to see my father-in-law. Here's a poem for the holiday:

Whose Mouth Do I Speak With

by Suzanne Rancourt

I can remember my father bringing home spruce gum.
He worked in the woods and filled his pockets
with golden chunks of pitch.
For his children
he provided this special sacrament
and we’d gather at this feet, around his legs,

Read the rest here


The Poetry Friday round-up is at Carol's Corner. Thanks, Carol!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Coral Reefs

One night a year, in a wildly improbable mass-spawning event, all the coral of a single species will release eggs and sperm bundled together into tiny translucent globes that cloud the water and rise to the ocean’s surface. Here, the globes break apart, sperm and eggs intermingle, and baby coral larvae are born.
~Meehan Crist, The Quest to Save Coral Reefs

Isn't that amazing about how coral reproduce? They look so much like plants! There's so much variety, as you can see from today's post. If you're interested in helping protect coral reefs, visit the Coral Reef Alliance to learn more.

Coral Reef at Palmyra Atoll National Wildlife Refuge
Photo by Jim Maragos/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

photo by Daniel Arndt

Euphyllia paraancora
photo by Ben Wagner

Ring of Fire 2002 Expedition
NOAA Photo Library

A variety of corals form an outcrop on Flynn Reef, Great Barrier Reef, Australia
photo by Toby Hudson

Coral at the Tulsa Zoo
photo by Rachel K

photo by waferbaby

Still-Life with Tuft of Marine Plants, Shells and Corals
by Anne Vallayer-Coster

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Monday, June 13, 2016

Neurotic and Lonely

I think I was kissed by a ninja... - w4m
There I was, taking a walk near the CCSU campus this gorgeous first day of the autumn season. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping and a soft breeze rippled gently through the trees with leaves just starting to turn... Out of the corner of my eye, I glimpsed a dark shadow that crossed my path, approximately 5'9" in height. The shadow blocked out the sun for the briefest moment in time, as I felt a slight pressure on my lips. I think I was kissed by a ninja. I know this is a long shot, but I'm hoping to find you.

The above Craigslist ad reminded me of the Sophie Blackall "Missed Connections" post I ran a while back.

For Music Monday, we have Gabriel Kahane, singing a Craigslist plea:

Friday, June 10, 2016

A Little Singing

Ditch the dream and be a doer, not a dreamer. Maybe you know exactly what it is you dream of being, or maybe you're paralyzed because you have no idea what your passion is. The truth is, it doesn't matter. You don't have to know. You just have to keep moving forward.
~Shonda Rhimes

It's high school graduation day for my son. Very exciting! Dash is passionate about history, he's a fan of geography, and he also likes economics, political science, and philosophy. He's one of those rare folks who actually enjoys public speaking. You can't become an astronaut without perfect vision, or he might want to pursue that. I am looking forward to seeing what he does!

The Hammock
Li-Young Lee, 1957

When I lay my head in my mother’s lap
I think how day hides the stars,
the way I lay hidden once, waiting
inside my mother’s singing to herself. And I remember
how she carried me on her back
between home and the kindergarten,
once each morning and once each afternoon.

I don’t know what my mother’s thinking.

Read the rest here.


A throwback post about another Dashiell

Beyond LiteracyLink has the Poetry Friday round-up today. Thanks, Carol!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Seats of the Muses

Give me a museum and I'll fill it.
~Pablo Picasso

Looking at museum buildings themselves as works of art today:

Chandelier of the nineteenth century in the Museo di Capodimonte (Napoli)

Natural History Museum, London
The use of tripods is forbidden in this place. The photograph was taken with a photographic bean bag placed on railings, not on a tripod.

Military Museum Garden, Annandale, Shimla, India
photo by Rohit Chhiber

Skopje, Macedonia - Archeological Museum of Macedonia by night

Richelieu wing of the Louvre museum

Ósvör Maritime Museum, Bolungarvík, Vestfirðir, Iceland
The museum consists of a double 19th century fishing base, a salt hut, a fish drying area, a drying hut and a typical fishing boat of that time.

Staircase designed by Giuseppe Momo for the Vatican Museums, 1932

Museum and Institute of Military History, Vienna

Prince Philip Science Museum (on the right) and The Hemispheric (in the back), City of Arts and Sciences, Valencia, Spain
designed by Santiago Calatrava
photo by Diego Delso

One last quote:
The Arts Council of England, in a 1998 report on 11 countries, found that Germany spent $85 per capita on the arts. The United States spent a shocking $6.
~Michael Audain

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

An 8-hour lullaby + calm. sleep.

Even a soul submerged in sleep
is hard at work and helps
make something of the world.
― Heraclitus

Sleeping is kind of an issue for me...I get in patterns of waking up after four hours of sleep. Maybe Max Richter's Sleep would help? (Sleep has been broadcast live overnight in England and Australia. 8 hours! Live! Sorry to have missed that.)

Also, Moby made calm. sleep., four hours of music for listening to while sleeping, doing yoga, meditating, etc., which he is giving away free.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Getting a headstart on crying

All real education is the architecture of the soul.
~William Bennett

We have a graduation this week, so here's an appropriate song for it: "Humble and Kind" by Tim McGraw.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Awesome or Pathological

Desperation works in job searching as well as it does in dating.
~Darrell Gurney

As I mentioned yesterday, my back is opposed to being in a seated position for very long, so I am trying to keep my computer use sporadic and short. My back is improving, though. All is not lost! :-) I hope to feel more normal by next Friday.

A poem about trying to get a job today. More specifically, about writing a cover letter:

Cover Letter
by Marcus McCann

A graceful arrangement of the baubles of your enthusiasm.
Why you matter, retail. An explanation of how
you were gingerbreaded from the dough of their firm at birth.

Your motto is avoidio missteppus. Your interest in grammar
grows abnormally. You long for font synergy.
Your other motto is Chuck Norris does not apply for jobs;

~Read the rest here. (Do click!)


Check It Out has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Jone!

Thursday, June 2, 2016


Piano keys are black and white
but they sound like a million colors in your mind
~Maria Cristina Mena

I was rear-ended at a stoplight this week, and my back hurts when I sit. So...I have to keep this short!

Pigments through the Ages is one of several exhibits in the WebExhibits online museum, a public service of the Institute for Dynamic Educational Advancement (IDEA).

On their site you can:
Choose pigments
Browse colors
Browse timeline
Make paintings

Very cool! Do you have a favorite color?