Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Polishing This Week's Pearl

This week's pearl for me was the discovery of Sophia De Mello Breyner Andresen's book: 'Shores, Horizons, Voyages...: Selected Poems' (2006). In this book are some of her poems in English and Portuguese.

Sophia: "Poetry is my understanding of the universe, my way of relating to things, my participation in reality, my encounter with voices and images. This is why the poem speaks not of an ideal life but of a concrete one: the angle of a window, the resonance of streets, cities and rooms, the shadow cast by a wall, a sudden face, the silence, distance and brightness of the stars, the night’s breath, the scent of linden and of oregano."

She loooved the sea and wrote a lot about/ around/ on/ under/ before ... - there must be more - it.

"The sea! The sea!" The cry of joy of "10,000" ancient Greeks after their long way home. As told by Xenophon in his 'Anabasis' (4th Century BC). What a story. The cruelty. The murdering. A world of Others.

In our time and age #2018. I am always amazed by the unquestionable love of individual 'homo sapiens' for the sea. I mostly think - and almost never say!: only a couple of hundred years ago the sea was considered as dangerous, smelly and a dumping ground. Not a place of joy, sun and holiday. So ... historically and culturally biased. I repeat: it's something that I think and almost never speak out loud.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

It's Getting Dark

It's still a mystery for me why I don't like most songs in Dutch. Too boring? Too close? Too melodramic? Too direct? Too not me? No emotional connection? I prefer songs in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish etc. I love to listen to the music of a song first and after that puzzle on the accompanying lyrics secondly. In a way I seem to like songs more if the music and the lyrics are apart.

Anyway, I love this Dutch song from Stef Bos. A poem! Song (music and lyrics): here. I translated it for you into English.

P.S. I couldn't find this beautiful song on youtube.
P.P.S. I wonder what you "hear" if you listen to this song.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Já Não Sei O Que Disse E O Que Disseste

ZUCA-MAGAZINE made a special issue about Portuguese poetry: 36 poems from 32 poets translated into Dutch.

Here are the three poems I love most:



Nesse verão, o vento despenteou os campos e os barcos
andaram aos gritos sobre as ondas. A beleza excessiva
das crianças arrombou os espelhos; e as raparigas,
surpreendendo a intimidade dos pais, enlouqueceram
nos corredores e foram perder-se, também elas,
na volúpia dos dias. Nas árvores centenárias

rebentaram frutos que inflamavam a concha das mãos
e escorregavam para a boca com a pressa dos nomes
proibidos. O sol queimou as páginas do livro
interrompido na violência de um poema e revirou
os cantos do único retrato que resistira à moldura
do tempo. De noite, os rapazes deitaram-se às baías

atrás das estrelas; e os amantes, incomodados
com a exiguidade dos quartos, foram fazer amor
nos balneários frios da praia e acordaram nas vozes
um do outro. Já não sei o que disse e o que disseste:
o verão desarruma os sentimentos.



Falar do trigo e não dizer
o joio. Percorrer
em voo raso os campos
sem pousar
os pés no chão. Abrir
um fruto e sentir
no ar o cheiro
a alfazema. Pequenas coisas,
dirás, que nada
significam perante
esta outra, maior: dizer
o indizível. Ou esta:
entrar sem bússola
na floresta
e não perder
o rumo. Ou essa outra, maior
que todas e cujo
nome por precaução
omites. Que é preciso,
às vezes,
não acordar o silêncio.



Há mulheres que trazem o mar nos olhos
Não pela cor
Mas pela vastidão da alma

E trazem a poesia nos dedos e nos sorrisos
Ficam para além do tempo
Como se a maré nunca as levasse
Da praia onde foram felizes

Há mulheres que trazem o mar nos olhos
pela grandeza da imensidão da alma
pelo infinito modo como abarcam as coisas e os homens…

Há mulheres que são maré em noites de tardes…
e calma

P.S. This poetry issue can be bought: here. You can also find there the original poems in Portuguese.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

The Originals

Check your history (of art) books! In them are Newspeak pictures (in our time and age #2018: fake images). Here are the originals:


P.S. Source: Svetlana Petrova & Zarathustra the Cat.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Tràigh Mheilein

Simply perfect

Source picture: Facebook group 'Scottish Beaches' on October 27th, 2018. Tràigh Mheilein beach on Island Harris.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Memory Lane

I walked the 'International Four Days Marches Nijmegen' six times. In 1991, 1997, 2013 (at age 49), 2014, 2015 and 2016. The first three times 4 * 50 km. The last three times 4 * 40 km. Why? Because I wanted to proof to the "world" I was able to and because I wanted to have the 'Cross for the Four Day Marches #6' - mark that every number of this cross is different.

Walking four days 40 or 50 kilometer is a tough exercise! Where one needs good legs and a mind in balance. Walking distances like that is above all a fight in your own head. Fighting against sleep, laziness and pain.

The book 'De Vriendelijkste Marathon ter Wereld' (in Dutch) is a collection of 37 'Four Days Marches Nijmegen' stories. Most of the stories are from participants who walked this march themselves. I loved to read the stories but was a bit disappointed in the collection. Too much nagging and emphasis on the walking achievement. As if it is a superhuman achievement. It's not! Every year 90% (mostly more) of the participants are able to reach the finish. Be prepared! Walk! Nothing more. Nothing less. 

Read this book? Yes, it's a memory lane for those who walked and for those who would like to walk the 'International Four Days Marches Nijmegen'. 

P.S. Source picture: here.
P.P.S. I am very proud on my #6. I wrote about it before in 'Proud' (July 2016).
P.P.P.S. Statistics of dropout percentage 1909-2017 can be found: here

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Wild Rosemary

What a beauty. How lovely her songs. (She changed her cloths halfway during her concert, on October 8th 2018, in Utrecht.)

I love her 'Alecrim': here

Alecrim doirado
Que nasce no monte
Sem ser semeado"

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

History of Dealing with Externalities

Are we teaching our kids the correct images at school? (Mark, that an idea is an image too. Mark, that the university is a school too.) Teach them about the history of more/ less market? Teach them about the history of more/ less government? Teach them about the history of more/ less political right or left? Teach them about the history of more/ less democrats or republicans? Teach them about the history of more/ less populism?

According to me we should learn our kids above all more about externalities:
  • classification of externalities
  • its definitions
  • overcome their constraints 
  • historical context of

In our time and age the discussion shouldn't be about too much Capitalism, too many Republicans, a "self-made businessman" in the White House or Make USA Great Again! We should discuss about the cost and benefit that was (un)consciously not aimed at.

(Mark, that Marx's surplus value is an externality. Mark, that tax avoidance is an externality.)

We should learn our kids to zoom out. We should learn our kids inclusive-thinking and inclusive-acting.
P.S. I wrote about this before in 1-2010 in 'IFAQ. Letter to @BillGates : Are we asking the right questions?'