On this day…. Jorge Luis Borges

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By Beti Alonso

The Aleph

by Jorge Luis Borges

O God! I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a King of infinite space…

Hamlet, II, 2

But they will teach us that Eternity is the Standing still of the Present Time, a Nunc-stans (as the schools call

it); which neither they, nor any else understand, no more than they would a Hic-stans for an Infinite greatness

of Place.

Leviathan, IV, 46

On the burning February morning Beatriz Viterbo died, after braving an agony that never for a single moment gave way to self-pity or fear, I noticed that the sidewalk billboards around Constitution Plaza were advertising some new brand or other of American cigarettes. The fact pained me, for I realised that the wide and ceaseless universe was already slipping away from her and that this slight change was the first of an endless series. The universe may change but not me, I thought with a certain sad vanity. I knew that at times my fruitless devotion had annoyed her; now that she was dead, I could devote myself to her memory, without hope but also without humiliation. I recalled that the thirtieth of April was her birthday; on that day to visit her house on Garay Street and pay my respects to her father and to Carlos Argentino Daneri, her first cousin, would be an irreproachable and perhaps unavoidable act of politeness. Once again I would wait in the twilight of the small, cluttered drawing room, once again I would study the details of her many photographs: Beatriz Viterbo in profile and in full colour; Beatriz wearing a mask, during the Carnival of 1921; Beatriz at her First Communion; Beatriz on the day of her wedding to Roberto Alessandri; Beatriz soon after her divorce, at a luncheon at the Turf Club; Beatriz at a seaside resort in Quilmes with Delia San Marco Porcel and Carlos Argentino; Beatriz with the Pekingese lapdog given her by Villegas Haedo; Beatriz, front and three-quarter views, smiling, hand on her chin… I would not be forced, as in the past, to justify my presence with modest offerings of books — books whose pages I finally learned to cut beforehand, so as not to find out, months later, that they lay around unopened.

Continue reading:

http://web.mit.edu/allanmc/www/borgesaleph.pdf

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Της ημέρας….

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Πολύ κουβέντα γίνεται σήμερα για την Ιθάκη, μα για λάθος λόγους. Και καθώς κοιτώ τη θάλασσα σκέφτομαι……

«Κι αν πτωχική την βρεις, η Ιθάκη δεν σε γέλασε.

Έτσι σοφός που έγινες, με τόση πείρα,

ήδη θα το κατάλαβες η Ιθάκες τι σημαίνουν.»

‘On the Sea’ by John Keats

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It keeps eternal whisperings around

Desolate shores, and with its mighty swell

Gluts twice ten thousand caverns, till the spell

Of Hecate leaves them their old shadowy sound.

Often ‘tis in such gentle temper found

That scarcely will the very smallest shell

Be moved for days from where it sometime fell,

When last the winds of heaven were unbound.

O ye! who have your eye-balls vexed and tired,

Feast them on the wideness of the sea;

O ye! whose ears are dinned with uproar rude,

Or fed too much with cloying melody,

Sit ye near some old cavern’s mouth and brood

Until ye start, as if the sea-nymphs quired!

Αθήνα….

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Ω χώματα της γης μου,

μύρια κι αξεχώριστα σαν τα νερά. Α.Σ

Καθώς προχωρούμε προς την άνοιξη, αυτά τα χώματα θαρρείς πως ομορφαίνουν πιότερο.

Της ημέρας….

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Γιώργος Ιακωβίδης, Άνοιξη 1927

Νέα μοίρα

Γυμνή γυναίκα

το ρόδι που έσπασε

ήταν γεμάτο αστέρια.

Γιώργος Σεφέρης χαϊκού. Γεννήθηκε σαν σήμερα το 1900

Writing about… «The Second Coming» by William Butler Yeats(13/6/1865–28/1/1939)

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W.B. Yeats 1907 by Augustus John OM 1878-1961

W.B. Yeats  by Augustus John OM , 1907

«Yeats began writing the poem in January 1919, in the wake of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and political turmoil in his native Ireland. But the first stanza captures more than just political unrest and violence. Its anxiety concerns the social ills of modernity: the rupture of traditional family and societal structures; the loss of collective religious faith, and with it, the collective sense of purpose; the feeling that the old rules no longer apply and there’s nothing to replace them.»

“The Second Coming” is a magnificent statement about the contrary forces at work in history, and about the conflict between the modern world and the ancient world. Put in his own words:

The end of an age, which always receives the revelation of the character of the next age, is represented by the coming of one gyre to its place of greatest expansion and of the other to its place of greatest contraction… The revelation [that] approaches will… take its character from the contrary movement of the interior gyre…

The Second Coming

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

 

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

Κώστας Καρυωτάκης:Πεζή μετάφραση του ποιήματος «La voix»- Η Φωνή

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220px-Kostas_Karyotakis_self_portrait

Η κούνια μου ακουμπούσε στη βιβλιοθήκη, Βαβήλ σκοτεινόν, όπου μυθιστόρημα, επιστήμη, μυθολογία, τα πάντα, η λατινική τέφρα και η ελληνική σκόνη, ανακατευόσαντε. Δεν ήμουν μεγαλύτερος από ένα βιβλίο.

Δύο φωνές μου μιλούσαν. Η πρώτη, ύπουλη και σταθερή, έλεγε: «Η Γη είναι ένα γλύκισμα ωραίο· μπορώ (και η ευχαρίστηση σου θα ‘ναι τότε χωρίς τέλος!) να σου δώσω μιαν όρεξη παρόμοια μεγάλη». Και η δεύτερη: «Ελα! ω, έλα στο ταξίδι των ονείρων, πέρα από το δυνατό, πέρα από το γνωρισμένο!». Και η φωνή αυτή ετραγουδούσε όπως ο άνεμος στις ακρογιαλιές, φάντασμα που κλαυθμυρίζει και κανείς δεν ξέρει πούθε ήρθε, που χαϊδεύει το αυτί κι όμως τρομάζει. Σου απάντησα: «Ναι! γλυκιά φωνή!».

Από τότε κρατάει αυτό που μπορεί, αλίμονο! να ειπωθεί πληγή μου και πεπρωμένο μου. Πίσω από τις σκηνοθεσίες της απεράντου υπάρξεως, στο μελανότερο της αβύσσου, βλέπω καθαρά κόσμους παράξενους, και, θύμα εκστατικό της οξυδέρκειάς μου, σέρνω φίδια που μου δαγκάνουν τα πόδια. κι από εκείνο τον καιρό αγαπώ τόσο τρυφερά, καθώς οι προφήτες, την έρημο και τη θάλασσα, γελώ στα πένθη κλαίω στις γιορτές, βρίσκω μια γεύση γλυκιά στο πικρό κρασί, νομίζω πολλές φορές για ψέματα τις αλήθειες, και, με τα μάτια στον ουρανό, πέφτω σε γκρεμούς.

Αλλά η Φωνή με παρηγορεί και λέει: «Κράτησε τα όνειρά σου· οι συνετοί δεν έχουν έτσι ωραία σαν τους τρελούς!»

                                                                                                          CHARLES BAUDELAIRE