Test in the kitchen

Sausages sautéed with potatoes and onions! It’s also highly advisable to have a philosopher or two on hand. A few pages of Plato while working on a baked ham. Wittgenstein’s Tractatus over a bowl of spaghetti with littleneck clams. We think best when we bring opposites together, when we realize that all these realities, one inside the other, are somehow connected. That’s how the wonder and amazement that are so necessary to both poetry and philosophy come about. A “truth” detached and purified of pleasures of ordinary life is not worth a damn in my view. Every grand theory and noble sentiment ought to be first tested in the kitchen—and then in bed, of course.

~ Charles Simic



When I remember all
    the friends so link’d together,
I’ve seen around me fall,
    like leaves in wintry weather;
I feel like one who treads alone
    some banquet hall deserted,
Whose lights are fled, whose garlands dead,
    and all but he departed.

~ Tom Moore



The universe makes a sound — is a sound. In the core of this sound there’s a silence, a silence that creates that sound, which is not its opposite, but its inseparable soul. And this silence can also be heard.

~ Etel Adnan from, https://www.themarginalian.org/2021/11/16/etel-adnan-shifting-the-silence/

I am not a poet. Who knows, maybe if I were, I’d still be at a loss for words. On one hand, having read Popova’s short article I feel relieved; At the least, I’ve now noticed a person named Adnan has lived, and I’ve enjoyed a small sip of her writing. On the other hand, a gripping panic begins to rise up as it’s painfully clear that I will never make even the slightest progress in experiencing the totality of what this universe has to offer. Anyway, go take a sip.


The frost

Young man,
Seize every minute
Of your time.

The days fly by;
Ere long you too
Will grow old.

If you believe me not,
See there, in the courtyard,
How the frost
Glitters white and cold and cruel
On the grass that once was green.

Do you not see
That you and I
Are as the branches
Of one tree?

With your rejoicing,
Comes my laughter;
With your sadness
Start my tears.

Could life be otherwise
With you and me?

~ Tzu-yeh, translated by Bruce Lee from, https://ffcproject.wordpress.com/tag/tzu-yeh/

(hat tip: Martial Artist of Life by J Little.)

It isn’t clear just how old the original poetry is; How about if I guess a round 1,000 years…

The human condition is clearly something we all have in common. Youth. Senescence. Immaturity. Wisdom. Life is a journey.


Hobie poetry

Soul Sailer

Hobie Cat, Hobie Cat, where are you bound?
Silently streaking over the sound.
Your sails standing high,
Proudly contrast the sky,
It’s not just a boat;
I know it can fly!

When she gets up to speed,
She’ll sing you a song.
But if you’re weak in the knees,
You’d best not go along.
For there’s always a thrill,
And sometimes a spill!
Hobie Cat, Hobie Cat – go where you will!

The world that we know
dwindles down to size
on the shoreline behind us.
We sail along on the song that
is the wind.

~ Bruce W. Constantine

To the best of my knowledge, this is the only piece of poetry my father wrote. Whatever possessed him to pick up a pencil and write this, I’ll never know. However, I would bet that it was the result of long hours chatting with one of his sailing buddies until they had it down pat; Followed by him writing it out. I see no errors or erasures, and I know his handwriting well enough to suspect that he simply wrote it out straight through. The last verse – oddly indented – looks like it was written separately, or at least later than the first two verses. I think it’s the better of the three, and I fear it might be a song lyric… but I’m not searching the ‘Net because I like the idea that he wrote it.