the child grows enormous but never grows up

marginalgloss:

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…When I did my Master’s degree in 2009 I really thought I could make a fresh start. I was going back to my alma mater, but I told myself that this time it would be different. I would be friendly, popular, outgoing. I would be relaxed, affable. I would be fun. I would be the kind of person with whom people wanted to be friends. People would come and knock on my door just to talk to me! I’d even started this cool blog (the one which you are reading now) but that was going to be my secret internet persona, only to be shared with those closest to me.

And I screwed it up! I screwed it up completely. I said stupid things that scared and alienated people. Some of them thought I was mad. The invitations dried up. Other people found their own level, and I went off on my own. I ended up burying myself deeper in my studies. I did quite well at that regard; not exceptionally well, but I did all right. And I wasted a chance to be a different, better person.

Since then I have come to accept a different version of myself: I am a person who just doesn’t really have a social life, and who doesn’t try especially hard to make friends. This actually runs contrary to many of the things I think about the nature of personality, and how nobody ever really grows up or stops changing as a person, and how you shouldn’t use the fact that you suffered as a child to hold you back in later life; but whatever. As we like to say at work: we are where we are…

Job

invisibleforeigner:

(Job 28:28)

Yes: wisdom begins with fear of the Lord,
which comprehends the power that made the seas,
the earth, the shimmering dawn, the unexplored
unfathomed skies, the moon, and the Pleiades.
Which also know Who comes to judge our shoddy
little failing lives, knowing full well,
we need not fear the one who kills the body,
but only He who condemns the soul to hell.
Which also knows it magnifies the Lord,
defying the demon, being the only release,
oddly enough, from fear, being its own reward,
which is also wise, is faith, is hope, is peace,
is tender mercy, over and over again,
until, at last, is love, is love. Amen.

William Baer

I’ve thought about this poem all summer. 

I wanted to see where beauty comes from
without you in the world, hauling my heart
across sixty acres of northeast meadow,
my pockets filling with flowers.
Then I remembered,
it’s you I miss in the brightness
and body of every living name:
rattlebox, yarrow, wild vetch.
You are the green wonder of June,
root and quasar, the thirst for salt.
When I finally understand that people fail
at love, what is left but cinquefoil, thistle,
the paper wings of the dragonfly
aeroplaning the soul with a sudden blue hilarity?
If I get the story right, desire is continuous,
equatorial. There is still so much
I want to know: what you believe
can never be removed from us,
what you dreamed on Walnut Street
in the unanswerable dark of your childhood,
learning pleasure on your own.
Tell me our story: are we impetuous,
are we kind to each other, do we surrender
to what the mind cannot think past?
Where is the evidence I will learn
to be good at loving?
The black dog orbits the horseshoe pond
for treefrogs in their plangent emergencies.
There are violet hills,
there is the covenant of duskbirds.
The moon comes over the mountain
like a big peach, and I want to tell you
what I couldn’t say the night we rushed
North, how I love the seriousness of your fingers
and the way you go into yourself,
calling my half-name like a secret.
I stand between taproot and treespire.
Here is the compass rose
to help me live through this.
Here are twelve ways of knowing
what blooms even in the blindness
of such longing. Yellow oxeye,
viper’s bugloss with its set of pink arms
pleading do not forget me.
We hunger for eloquence.
We measure the isopleths.
I am visiting my life with reckless plenitude.
The air is fragrant with tiny strawberries.
Fireflies turn on their electric wills:
an effulgence. Let me come back
whole, let me remember how to touch you
before it is too late.
Stacie Cassarino, Summer Solstice
(via grammatolatry)
But surely a hermit who takes a newspaper is not a hermit in whom one can have complete confidence.
Casiotone for the Painfully Alone - Bobby Malone Moves Home
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Moreover, in this extremity of solitude none could count on any help from his neighbour; each had to bear the load of his troubles alone. If, by some chance, one of us tried to unburden himself or to say something about his feelings, the reply he got, whatever it might be, usually wounded him. And then it dawned on him that he and the man with him weren’t talking about the same thing. For while he himself spoke from the depths of long days of brooding upon his personal distress, and the image he had tried to impart had been slowly shaped and proved in the fires of passion and regret, this meant nothing to the man to whom he was speaking, and who pictured a conventional emotion, a grief that is traded on the market-place, mass-produced. Whether friendly or hostile, the reply always missed fire, and the attempt to communicate had to be given up. This was true of those at least for whom silence was unbearable, and since the others could not find the truly expressive word, they resigned themselves to using the current coin of language, the commonplaces of plain narrative, of anecdote, and of their daily paper. So, in these cases, too, even the sincerest grief had to make do with the set phrases of ordinary conversation. Only on these terms could the prisoners of the plague ensure the sympathy of their door-porter and the interest of their hearers.
Albert Camus, from The Plague

Elaine Scarry brings up an interesting point. Pain, she says, is unique in its inexpressibility. It represents the apotheosis of subjectivity, unsharable and therefore incommunicable. Language itself breaks down — words become inadequate, phonemes unpronounceable. Meaning reaches a dead end. Knowledge of pain, more than knowledge of anything else, is predicated on experiencing it. Possessing it. Being in it. And yet.

And yet to presume to know another’s pain, while folly, is to make an originary, inaugurating step towards empathy. To presume to know another’s pain is to project your own past experience of pain — yes singular, yes subjective — onto the other, solipsism and subjectivity made common. Empathy, says Scarry, is predicated on the experience of pain, on being in pain and encountering others in pain. (via index-rerum)
I show no anger but in flashes of humour,
all is courtesy and horror.
Sharon Olds, “Unspeakable” (via invisibleforeigner)
Sun Kil Moon - Dogs
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the-drawing-center:

"His drawings, haunted and chockablock with weird machines and otherworldly vistas, meditated on destruction, poverty, science and afflicted cities like Sarajevo, Zagreb and Havana, where he imagined quasi-Cubist designs like bandages on open wounds." -The New York Times’ Michael Kimmelman on Lebbeus Woods
Read Kimmelman’s full New York Times 2012 commemoration here. Lebbeus Woods, Architect is on view through June 15. Image: Lebbeus Woods, Berlin Free Zone, 1990

the-drawing-center:

"His drawings, haunted and chockablock with weird machines and otherworldly vistas, meditated on destruction, poverty, science and afflicted cities like Sarajevo, Zagreb and Havana, where he imagined quasi-Cubist designs like bandages on open wounds." -The New York Times’ Michael Kimmelman on Lebbeus Woods
Read Kimmelman’s full New York Times 2012 commemoration here.

Lebbeus Woods, Architect is on view through June 15.

Image: Lebbeus Woods, Berlin Free Zone, 1990
The nerd liberation movement grows more powerful by the day, consuming media and calling it personality.
Angel Olsen - White Fire
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