Tuesday, November 30, 2010

quoth the madman

“There is a fundamental reason why we look at the sky with wonder and longing—for the same reason that we stand, hour after hour, gazing at the distant swell of the open ocean. There is something like an ancient wisdom, encoded and tucked away in our DNA, that knows its point of origin as surely as a salmonid knows its creek. Intellectually, we may not want to return there, but the genes know, and long for their origins—their home in the salty depths. But if the seas are our immediate source, the penultimate source is certainly the heavens… The spectacular truth is—and this is something that your DNA has known all along—the very atoms of your body—the iron, calcium, phosphorus, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and on and on—were initially forged in long-dead stars. This is why, when you stand outside under a moonless, country sky, you feel some ineffable tugging at your innards. We are star stuff. Keep looking up. ”

—Jerry Waxman

Monday, November 29, 2010


“But I don’t want comfort. I want God, I want poetry, I want real danger, I want freedom, I want goodness. I want sin. ”
Brave New World - Aldous Huxley

quoth the madman

And when at last you find someone to whom you feel you can pour out your soul, you stop in shock at the words you utter— they are so rusty, so ugly, so meaningless and feeble from being kept in the small cramped dark inside you so long.

~ Sylvia Plath

Sunday, November 28, 2010


"…Think! When there is torture there is pain and wounds, physical agony, and all this distracts the mind from mental suffering, so that one is tormented only by the wounds until the moment of death. But the most terrible agony many not be in the wounds themselves but in knowing for certain that within an hour, then within ten minutes, then within half a minute, now at this very instant – your soul will leave your body and you will no longer be a person, and that is certain; the worst thing is that it is certain."

- The Idiot - Dostoevsky

quoth the madman

"It is quite possible—overwhelmingly probable, one might guess—that we will always learn more about human life and personality from novels than from scientific psychology."
— Noam Chomsky

united snakes

Friday, November 26, 2010


“All human desire is poised on an axis of paradox, absence and presence its poles, love and hate its motive energies. ”
— Anne Carson - Eros the Bittersweet

Thursday, November 25, 2010

quoth the madman

“I am not equal to my longing.
Somewhere there should be a place
the exact shape of my emptiness—
there should be a place
responsible for taking one back. ”
—Jane Mead

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


“If there is any secret
to this life I live, this is it:
the sound of what cannot be seen
sings within everything that can.
& there is nothing more to it than that. ”
— Brian Andreas - Nothing More

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


The green leaf opens
and the leaf falls,

each breath is a flame
that gives in to fire;

and grief is the price
we pay for love,

and the death of love
the fee of all desire.

~ Lesson ~ Robin Robertson

Monday, November 22, 2010


“Do not do what someone else could do as well as you. Do not say, do not write what someone else could say, could write as well as you. Care for nothing in yourself but what you feel exists nowhere else. And, out of yourself create, impatiently or patiently, the most irreplaceable of beings.”

- André Gide - Fruits of the Earth (1897)

Sunday, November 21, 2010



Be who you are and will be
learn to cherish that boisterous Black Angel that drives you
up one day and down another
protecting the place where your power rises
running like hot blood
from the same source
as your pain.
When you are hungry
learn to eat
whatever sustains you
until morning
but do not be misled by details
simply because you live them.
Do not let your head deny
your hands
any memory of what passes through them
nor your eyes
nor your heart
everything can be useful
except what is wasteful
(you will need
to remember this when you are accused of destruction.)
Even when they are dangerous
examine the heart of those machines you hate
before you discard them
and never mourn the lack of their power
lest you be condemned
to relive them.
If you do not learn to hate
you will never be lonely
to love easily
nor will you always be brave
although it does not grow any easier.
Do not pretend to convenient beliefs
even when they are righteous
you will never be able to defend your city
while shouting.
Remember our sun
is not the most noteworthy star
only the nearest.
Respect whatever pain you bring back
from your dreaming
but do not look for new gods
in the sea
nor in any part of a rainbow.
Each time you love
love as deeply
as if it were
only nothing is
Speak proudly to your children
wherever you may find them
tell them
you are the offspring of slaves
and your mother was
a princess
in darkness.

~ For Each of You ~Audre Lorde


The marriage of Sulphur and Quicksilver, Sun and Moon, King and Queen, is the central symbol of alchemy.
In this opera, we do not see concrete persons on stage, but rather alchemical archetypes, represented by characters. Man yearns for a synthesis between the terrestrial and celestial forces within himself. He desires to bridge their contradictions and in doing so too experience wholeness and well-being.
The image of the marriage has served as an excellent symbol for the fulfillment of this desire.
Two opposing natures, each in themselves infertile, conjoin, fertilizing each other and thus giving rise to new life.
The alchemists, who had the incessant urge to couple water and fire in their laboratories and oratory, always returned to this theme.

- Matheus Franciscus - The Magic Flute

Friday, November 19, 2010

quoth the madman

“I am a cage, in search of a bird. ”
—Franz Kafka


Thursday, November 18, 2010

quoth the madman

“But we make our own mistakes. We sleep unwisely. It is our right. It is our madness and our glory. ”
—Neil Gaiman, Locks

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

quoth the madman

“The value of things is not the time they last, but the intensity with which they occur. ”
—Fernando Pessoa

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

quoth the madman

“Life has no meaning. Each of us has meaning and we bring it to life. It is a waste to be asking the question when you are the answer. ”
—Joseph Campbell

Monday, November 15, 2010

quoth the madman

“It is important to have a secret, a premonition of things unknown. It fills life with something impersonal, a numinosum. A man who has never experienced that has missed something important. He must sense that he lives in a world which in some respects is mysterious; that things happen and can be experienced which remain inexplicable; that not everything which happens can be anticipated. The unexpected and the incredible belong in this world. Only then is life whole. For me the world has from the beginning been infinite and ungraspable. ”
—Carl Jung.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

quoth the madman

"La mode c’est éphémère, dangereux et injuste…"
-Karl Lagerfeld

Saturday, November 13, 2010

quoth the madman

“Most people die of a sort of creeping common sense, and discover when it is too late that the only things one never regrets are one’s mistakes.”
—Oscar Wilde

Friday, November 12, 2010

quoth the madman

“What can I expect from myself? My sensation in all their horrible acuity, and a profound awareness of feeling. A sharp mind that only destroys me, and an unusual capacity for dreaming to keep me entertained.
A dead will and a reflection that cradles it, like a living child.”
—Fernando Pessoa

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

ladies cultural awareness day

Léon Joseph-Florentine Bonnat
Study for Jacob Wrestling the Angel, 1876

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


"Stars are beautiful, but they may not take an active part in anything, they must just look on for ever. It is a punishment put on them for something they did so long ago that no star now knows what it was. So the older ones have become glassy-eyed and seldom speak (winking is the star language), but the little ones still wonder."

— J.M. Barrie - Peter and Wendy

Monday, November 8, 2010

quoth the madman

“Never dilute yourself to be accepted or to be more understood.”
—Patrick Wolf

from the house of silence


First rehearse the easy things.
Lose your words in a high wind,
walk in the dark on an unlit road,
observe how other people mislay keys,
their diaries, new umbrellas.
See what it takes to go unnoticed
in a crowded room. Tell lies:
“I love you. I’ll be back in half an hour.
I’m fine.”

Then childish things.
Stand very still behind a tree,
become a cowboy, say you’ve died,
climb into wardrobes, breathe on a mirror
until there’s no one there, and practice magic,
tricks with smoke and fire –
a flick of the wrist and the victim’s lost
his watch, his wife, his ten pound note. Perfect it.
Hold your breath a little longer every time.

The hardest things.
Eat less, much less, and take a vow of silence.
Learn the point of vanishing, the moment
embers turn to ash, the sun falls down,
the sudden white-out comes.
And when it comes again – it will –
just walk at it, walk into it, and walk,
until you know that you’re no longer

~ How to disappear ~ Amanda Dalton

Sunday, November 7, 2010

quoth the madman

Each time autumn arrives with its austere intoxications, I suffer as if every hope that I carry within me and which are the same as those that illuminated my twentieth year were going to expire forever along with the dead leaves. I am afraid of being old and of no longer being able to inspire love, which is a true death for a man of my nature and with my needs for madness of mind and body.
~ Letter ~ Félicien Rops

ladies cultural awareness day

Die Nacht (The Night) by Ferdinand Hodler, 1890.

Les Genies de la Mort

Geniuses of death - a sinister group of lithographs by Edmond Jean Baptiste Guillaume (Bismarck is seen in the third image). Guillaume's work was said to have been an influence on Odilon Redon.

modern anthropology

The Whitechapel Club in Chicago, founded in 1889 and named after the London site of some of the crimes of Jack the Ripper, was a gathering place for reporters. The club was decorated with mementos of crimes - murder weapons, human skulls, and a coffin-shaped table; the reporters glamorized their familiarity with the rawness of city life while also creating the atmosphere of a college fraternity. But the club had an important practical function, too, for reporter’s criticized one another's work there. Reporters became as sensitive to the reception of their stories at the Club as to the judgments of their city editors.



Les sanglots longs
Des violons
De l’automne
Blessent mon cœur
D’une langueur

Tout suffocant
Et blême, quand
Sonne l’heure.
Je me souviens
Des jours anciens,
Et je pleure…

Et je m’en vais
Au vent mauvais
Qui m’emporte
De çà, de là,
Pareil à la

~ Autumn Song ~Paul Verlaine, 1890.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

ladies cultural awarness day

Skull of a Skeleton with Burning Cigarette ~ Van Gogh ~1885-86

The painting was created while van Gogh was a student at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Antwerp, Belgium. To improve his command of the human figure, Vincent attended life classes at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts, where a skeleton was used to study anatomy. The burning cigarette placed between the teeth of this bare skull typifies the irreverent humor that often reigned among art students, but the striking feature of this painting is van Gogh’s vital and confident handling of a complex subject.

ladies cultural awareness day

The Garden Of Death, Hugo Simberg, 1896.

ladies cultural awareness day

Death the Bride - Thomas Cooper Gotch, c. 1895


“Her hair, which was powdered with violet sand, and combined into the form of a tower, after the fashion of the Chanaanite maidens, added to her height. Tresses of pearls were fastened to her temples, and fell to the corners of her mouth, which was as rosy as a half-open pomegranate. On her breast was a collection of luminous stones, their variegation imitating the scales of the murena. Her arms were adorned with diamonds, and issued naked from her sleeveless tunic, which was starred with red flowers on a perfectly black ground. Between her ankles she wore a golden chainlet to regulate her steps, and her large dark purple mantle, cut of an unknown material, trailed behind her, making, as it were, at each step, a broad wave which followed her.”

—Gustave Flaubert - Salammbo

Friday, November 5, 2010


"I am all in a sea of wonders. I doubt; I fear; I think strange things, which I dare not confess to my own soul."
Dracula - Bram Stoker

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Though beauty be the mark of praise,
And yours of whom I sing be such
As not the world can praise too much,
Yet is ’t your virtue now I raise.

A virtue, like allay, so gone
Throughout your form, as, though that move
And draw and conquer all men’s love,
This sùbjects you to love of one.

Wherein you triumph yet; because
’Tis of yourself, and that you use
The noblest freedom, not to choose
Against or faith or honor’s laws.

But who should less expect from you,
In whom alone Love lives again?
By whom he is restored to men,
And kept, and bred, and brought up true.

His falling temples you have reared,
The withered garlands ta’en away;
His altars kept from the decay
That envy wished, and nature feared;

And on them burn so chaste a flame,
With so much loyalties’ expense,
As Love, t’ acquit such excellence,
Is gone himself into your name.

And you are he; the deity
To whom all lovers are designed
That would their better objects find;
Among which faithful troop am I.

Who, as an offspring at your shrine,
Have sung this hymn, and here entreat
One spark of your diviner heat
To light upon a love of mine.

Which, if it kindle not, but scant
Appear, and that to shortest view,
Yet give me leave t’ adore in you
What I in her am grieved to want.

- An Elegy - Ben Jonson (1572 - 1637)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


in the room of my life
the objects keep changing.
Ashtrays to cry into,
the suffering brother of the wood walls,
the forty-eight keys of the typewriter
each an eyeball that is never shut,
the books, each a contestant in a beauty contest,
the black chair, a dog coffin made of Naugahyde,
the sockets on the wall
waiting like a cave of bees,
the gold rug
a conversation of heels and toes,
the fireplace
a knife waiting for someone to pick it up,
the sofa, exhausted with the exertion of a whore,
the phone
two flowers taking root in its crotch,
the doors
opening and closing like sea clams,
the lights
poking at me,
lighting up both the soil and the laugh.
The windows,
the starving windows
that drive the trees like nails into my heart.
Each day I feed the world out there
although birds explode
right and left.
I feed the world in here too,
offering the desk puppy biscuits.
However, nothing is just what it seems to be.
My objects dream and wear new costumes,
compelled to, it seems, by all the words in my hands
and the sea that bangs in my throat.

- The Room of My Life - Anne Sexton


All Bibles or sacred codes have been the causes of the following Errors:
1.That Man has two real existing principles, viz. a Body and a Soul.
2.That Energy, called Evil, is alone from the Body; and that Reason, called Good, is alone from the Soul.
3.That God will torment Man in Eternity for following his Energies.

But the following Contraries to these are True:
1.Man has no Body distinct from his Soul, for that called Body is a portion of Soul discerned by the five Senses, the chief inlets of Soul in this age.
2.Energy is the only life and is from the Body, and Reason is the bound or outward circumference of Energy.
3.Energy is Eternal Delight.

- William Blake - The Marriage of Heaven and Hell


Ecstasy of the social: the masses. More social than the social.
Ecstasy of the body: obesity. Fatter than fat.
Ecstasy of information: stimulation. Truer than true.
Ecstasy of time: real time, instantaneity. More present than the present.
Ecstasy of the real: the hyperreal. More real than the real.
Ecstasy of sex: porn. More sexual than sex.
Ecstasy of violence: terror. More violent than violence…

All this describes, by a kind of potentiation, a raising to the second power, a pushing to the limit, a state of unconditional realization, a total positivity (every negative sign raised to the second power produces a positive), from which all utopia, all death, and all negativity have been expunged. A state of extermination, cleansing of the negative, as corollary, to all the other actual forms of purification and discrimination. Thus, freedom has been obliterated, liquidated by liberation; truth has been supplanted by verification;the community has been liquidated and absorbed by communication; form gives way to information and performance. Everywhere we see a paradoxical logic: the idea is destroyed by its own realization, by its own excess. And in this way history itself comes to and end, finds itself obliterated by the instantaneity and and omnipresence of the event.

-nJean Baudrillard - The Vital Illusion

organ donor

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Child of a day, thou knowest not
The tears that overflow thy urn,
The gushing eyes that read thy lot,
Nor, if thou knewest, couldst return!

And why the wish! the pure and blest
Watch like thy mother o'er thy sleep.
O peaceful night! O envied rest!
Thou wilt not ever see her weep.

- Child of a Day - Walter Savage Landor

Monday, November 1, 2010


Stand still, and I will read to thee
A lecture, love, in love's philosophy.
These three hours that we have spent,
Walking here, two shadows went
Along with us, which we ourselves produc'd.
But, now the sun is just above our head,
We do those shadows tread,
And to brave clearness all things are reduc'd.
So whilst our infant loves did grow,
Disguises did, and shadows, flow
From us, and our cares; but now 'tis not so.
That love has not attain'd the high'st degree,
Which is still diligent lest others see.

Except our loves at this noon stay,
We shall new shadows make the other way.
As the first were made to blind
Others, these which come behind
Will work upon ourselves, and blind our eyes.
If our loves faint, and westwardly decline,
To me thou, falsely, thine,
And I to thee mine actions shall disguise.
The morning shadows wear away,
But these grow longer all the day;
But oh, love's day is short, if love decay.
Love is a growing, or full constant light,
And his first minute, after noon, is night.

- A Lecture upon the Shadow - John Donne