Don't be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Saturday, April 28, 2012
Friday, April 27, 2012
Thursday Author Talk will present Nancy Aronie, founder of the Chilmark Writing Workshop on Martha's Vineyard, author of Writing from the Heart on May 3, 2012 at 7:30 p.m. in the Main Library Periodical Room. Sponsored by the Friends of the Concord Free Public Library, the event is free and open to all.
by George Bilgere
When Odysseus finally does get home
he is understandably upset about the suitors,
who have been mooching off his wife for twenty years,
drinking his wine, eating his mutton, etc.
In a similar situation today he would seek legal counsel.
But those were different times. With the help
of his son Telemachus he slaughters roughly
one hundred and ten suitors
and quite a number of young ladies,
although in view of their behavior
I use the term loosely. Rivers of blood
course across the palace floor.
I too have come home in a bad mood.
Yesterday, for instance, after the department meeting,
when I ended up losing my choice parking spot
behind the library to the new provost.
I slammed the door. I threw down my book bag
in this particular way I have perfected over the years
that lets my wife understand
the contempt I have for my enemies,
which is prodigious. And then with great skill
she built a gin and tonic
that would have pleased the very gods,
and with epic patience she listened
as I told her of my wrath, and of what I intended to do
to so-and-so, and also to what's-his-name.
And then there was another gin and tonic
and presently my wrath abated and was forgotten,
and peace came to reign once more
in the great halls and courtyards of my house.
Thursday, April 26, 2012
This morning all the bocce players were out in the park behind Bouley field. I saw them on my walk with Lily. There's a seniors bocce league that meets every Thursday Morning at 8:30-10:30AM. Today was their first day. They play for about two to three hours (three games) a week through the summer. They love Lily! Last year I made a photo documentary of them. One woman drives down from Mendon Massachusetts to play with serious players.
Posted by The Urban Mermaid on Thursday, April 26, 2012
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
In my neighborhood dramas play out
on tenement porches.
Men yell at their dogs and mothers scream
at their children.
Saturday nights teenagers drive around town
throwing their beer bottles at the stone walls.
Kids buy cans of whipped cream from Walgreen's
for the nitrous, tossing the empties in the shrubs.
Girls too young become parents overnight
while the feral cats yowl in heat,
and it all repeats, spinning into space.
Nothing is hidden
Posted by The Urban Mermaid on Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Home cooking is a catalyst that brings people together. We are losing the daily ritual of sitting down around the table (without the intrusion of television), of having the opportunity to interact, to share our experiences and concerns, to listen to others. Home kitchens, despite the increase in designer appliances and cabinetry, are mostly quiet and empty today. Strangers are preparing much of our food. And our supermarkets, which once considered restaurants and fast-food places the enemy, have joined the trend by enlarging their delis and offering ready-to-eat food they call "home-replacement meals." But bringing ready-cooked meals home is not the same as cooking in your own kitchen, where you are in control of the ingredients you use, where you fill the house with good cooking smells, and where you all share in a single dish, taking a helping and passing the platter on to your neighbor. Nothing can replace that.
-Marion Cunningham, from the introduction to Lost Recipes.
Posted by The Urban Mermaid on Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Monday, April 23, 2012
by Wendell Berry
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
-Wendell Berry, from The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry
We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the life that is waiting for us.
One way or another, we all have to find what best fosters the flowering of our humanity in this contemporary life, and dedicate ourselves to that.
April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
Winter kept us warm, covering
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
A little life with dried tubers.
-T.S. Eliot, The Waste Land
A pupa (Latin pupa for doll, pl: pupae or pupas) is the life stage of some insects undergoing transformation. The pupal stage is found only in holometabolous insects, those that undergo a complete metamorphosis, going through four life stages; embryo, larva, pupa and imago.
The pupae of different groups of insects have different names such as chrysalis in the Lepidoptera order and tumbler in the mosquito family. Pupae may further be enclosed in other structures such as cocoons, nests or shells.
Some pupae remain inside the exoskeleton of the final larval instar and receive the name of puparium (plural, puparia); the flies of the families Stratiomyidae, Syrphidae and others have puparia.
It takes great courage to see the world in its tainted glory and still love it.
Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I'll try again tomorrow.
-Mary Anne Radmacher
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
We come unbidden into this life, and if we are lucky we find a purpose beyond starvation, misery, and early death which, lest we forget, is the common lot. I grew up and I found my purpose and it was to become a physician. My intent wasn’t to save the world as much as to heal myself. Few doctors will admit this, certainly not young ones, but subconsciously, in entering the profession, we must believe that ministering to others will heal our woundedness. And it can. But it can also deepen the wound.
-Abraham Verghese, Cutting for Stone
When we are young, few of us have established an inner marriage when we commit to an outer partner. We believe the outer partner is the Beloved, while the true Beloved is hidden away in a coffin - maybe a coffin that traps the soul in insatiable desire that freezes it to matter. As life continues, however, we begin to realize we cannot enter an outer relationship unless we are coming from our own inner marriage. Until the Bride and Bridegroom creatively love each other, the outer relationship is starving.
The shadow is a tight passage, a narrow door, whose painful constriction no one is spared who goes down the deep well. But one must learn to know oneself in order to know who one is. For what comes after the door is, surprisingly enough, a boundless expanse full of unprecedented uncertainty, with apparently no inside and no outside, no above and no below, no here and no there, no mine and no thine, no good and no bad. It is the world of water, where all life floats in suspension; where the realm of the sympathetic system, the soul of everything living, begins; where I am indivisibly this and that; where I experience the other in myself and the other-than-myself experiences me.
-Carl Gustav Jung
Monday, April 16, 2012
I have a strong desire for sanctuary, in my work and in my home. I do not want to be a control freak but I do get outraged when my boundaries are violated. I live in a city by choice, where it might seem that sanctuary is nearly impossible, but I have spoken with people who live in suburban and rural areas and they too have conflicts with boundaries, territorial and otherwise. So what is sanctuary, and how does one maintain it in the face of continuous change and encroaching human beings? How do we keep our sanctuary rather than giving it over to others? My upbringing was full of boundary violations, and I was ignored or shamed if I objected or resisted. Perhaps today I am reliving my childhood violations with every neighborly boundary violation. I have to remind myself that I am allowed to be fierce but I mostly need to be courageous. My ultimate sanctuary is between my ears. I have to rein my boundary in, from the neighborhood, past my yard and house, to where it ultimately lies; at my skin. The sanctuary of my mind is what I need to maintain and defend.
Posted by The Urban Mermaid on Monday, April 16, 2012
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Seeing sometimes means constructing a little theater with the materials at hand, and then awaiting the arrival of actors.
-Robert Doisneau, Paris
Clutter has been outlawed. But a little disorder is a good thing. That's where the poetry lurks.
-Robert Doisneau, Paris
Spontinaeity has been outlawed. People are afraid of life.
-Robert Doisneau, Paris
Posted by The Urban Mermaid on Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Friday, April 06, 2012
Monday, April 02, 2012
One must believe that private dilemmas are, if deeply examined, universal, and so, if expressed, have a human value beyond the private, and one must also believe in the vehicle for expressing them, in the talent.
-May Sarton, Journal of a Solitude