Browsed by
Month: June 2013

Bloomsday 2013

Bloomsday 2013

It’s that time of year again. Ulysses awakens from its slumber to be read out loud by millions of people around the world. Sometimes, they even get through the entire novel.

Something by Joyce apropos of something:

James Joyce, by Jacques-Emile Blanche. 1935

Beauty, the splendour of truth, is a gracious presence when the imagination contemplates intensely the truth of its own being or the visible world, and the spirit which proceeds out of truth and beauty is the holy spirit of joy. These are realities and these alone give and sustain life.

— James Joyce

I think of Molly saying Yes, and Nietzsche saying Yes, and know they aren’t exactly talking about the same things. Though they might be. Molly (Nora Barnacle to a degree) says Yes to Leopold Bloom (Joyce to a far lesser degree), to sex, to sex with Bloom, to sex with Joyce, to a new life with him, or a return to an old one … Click to continue . . .

Summer’s Eve

Summer’s Eve

June brings us poetry by Neil Ellman and a short story by Donal Mahoney. Summer is around the corner. Will there be dancing in the streets?

 

*     *     *     *     *

And the Show Went On, by Alan Riding
And the Show Went On, by Alan Riding

Reading a fascinating book about Occupied Paris. Alan Riding’s And the Show Went On. About 110 pages into it. He tells the story of heroism and collaboration in France, the Resistance, the complicit Vichy government, the attempt to flee the horrors of the Third Reich.

For me, World War II was always the last just war. Before it and since that time, wars have been overwhelmingly unnecessary, wars of choice, wars of conquest and the protection of markets. Wars that essentially had no reason for being, other than greed, avarice, the expansion of power or the exploitation of trumped up threats.

World War II was the real thing. Things really did stand in the balance. There really was a … Click to continue . . .

Neil Ellman: A Rose is a Phantom of a Rose

Neil Ellman: A Rose is a Phantom of a Rose

Some Roses and Their Phantoms

(after the painting by Dorothea Tanning)

 

 

When roses die their petals shed
like skin peeled from a snake
with nothing left but the phantom-coils
of yesterday’s blooms they shrivel
and spool, curl into shapeless knots
to live among the dead      
where the ghosts of roses go
to hide and be alone
with thoughts of might have been
springs that would never come.  

 — by Neil Ellman

 

 

Copyright © 2013, by Neil Ellman. All Rights Reserved

 

 

Twice nominated for Best of the Net, as well as for the Rhysling Award from the Science Fiction Poetry Association, Neil Ellman writes from New Jersey.  Hundreds of his poems, many of which are ekphrastic and written in response to works of modern and contemporary art, appear in publication throughout the world.  His first full-length collection, Parallels, consists of more than 200 of his previously published ekphrastic works.

 

 

Donal Mahoney: Paddy Murphy’s Wake

Donal Mahoney: Paddy Murphy’s Wake

Paddy Murphy’s Wake

 

The priest had been there earlier and the rosary was said and relatives and friends in single file were offering condolences. “Sorry for your troubles,” one by one they said, bending over Maggie Murphy, the widow silent in her rocker, a foot or so from Paddy, resplendent in his casket, the two of them much closer now than they had ever been.

A silent guest of honor, Paddy now had nothing more to say, waked in aspic, if you will, in front of his gothic fireplace.

The moon was full this starless night and the hour was getting late and still the widow hadn’t wept. Her eyes were swept Saharas and the mourners wanted tears. They had fields to plow come morning and they needed sleep, but the custom in County Kerry was that no one leaves a wake until the widow weeps.

Fair Maggie could have married any man in Kerry, according to her mother, … Click to continue . . .