Marcelin Pleynet, Norman Maclean, Sara Coleridge, J.J.L. ten Kate, Giusepe di Lampedusa, Iván Mándy

De Franse dichter, schrijver en essayist Marcelin Pleynet werd geboren op 23 december 1933 in Lyon. Zie ook alle tags voor Marcelin Pleynet op dit blog.

Uit: Chagall en France

« Chagall arrive pour la première fois à Paris en 1910, il a vingt-trois ans, il n’en repartira qu’en 1914, pour revenir en 1923 et rester en France jusqu’à ce que la guerre l’en chasse, en 1941. Il séjournera alors aux États-Unis, de 1941 à 1948, date à laquelle il s’installe définitivement en France.
Si l’on fait le compte, on constate que Chagall a passé plus des deux tiers de sa vie en France, et notamment dans la maturité de son âge et de son art.
Certes, dans un poème qui fut très souvent reproduit, Chagall prend soin de préciser : « Seul est le mien / Le pays qui se trouve dans mon âme », avant de poursuivre en développant les thèmes qui illustrent son œuvre : « En moi fleurissent des jardins / Mes fleurs sont inventées / Les rues m’appartiennent / Mais il n’y a pas de maisons / Elles ont été détruites dès mon enfance / Les habitants vagabondent dans l’air / À la recherche d’un logis / Ils habitent mon âme.»
Ce qui est une autre façon de dire que le seul pays qu’il se reconnaît est celui que déploient sa peinture et son âme (l’âme de sa peinture), et que sa peinture ne connaît pas de frontière. Et en effet la peinture de Chagall ne connaît pas de frontière, elle est certainement aujourd’hui l’œuvre la plus universelle qui soit. Pourtant, Chagall vécut près de soixante ans en France et il n’a jamais manqué de souligner (alors même qu’il s’était momentanément installé aux États-Unis) tout ce qui le rattachait à l’art et à la culture française.
En 1943, lors d’une conférence prononcée au « Pontigny » franco-américain, à Mount’Holyoke College et publiée dans La Renaissance, revue de l’École libre des hautes études de New York, Chagall déclare : « Je suis arrivé à Paris comme poussé par le destin .. Le soleil de l’art ne brillait alors qu’à Paris, et il me semblait et il me semble jusqu’à présent qu’il n’y a pas de plus grande révolution de l’œil que celle que j’ai rencontrée en 1910, à mon arrivée à Paris. Les paysages, les figures de Cézanne, Manet, Monet, Seurat, Renoir, Van Gogh, le fauvisme de Matisse et tant d’autres me stupéfièrent. Ils m’attiraient comme un phénomène de la nature.”

 
Marcelin Pleynet (Lyon, 23 december 1933)
La joie familiale door Marc Chagall, 1976

 

De Amerikaanse schrijver Norman Fitzroy Maclean werd geboren op 23 december 1902 in Clarinda, Iowa. Zie ook alle tags voor Norman Maclean op dit blog.

Uit: A River Runs Through It

“The fight seemed suddenly to stop itself. She was lying on the floor IletNN cell us. Then we but h began to cry and fight in a rage, each one shouting, “You son of bitch, you knocked my mother down.” She got off the floor, and, blind without her glasses, staggered in circles between us, saying without recognizing which one she was addressing, “No, it wasn’t you. I just slipped and fell.” So this was the only time we ever fought. Perhaps we always wondered which of us eras tougher, but, if boyhood questions aren’t answered before a certain point in time, they can’t ever be raised again. So we returned to being gracious to each other, as the wall sug-gested that we should be. We also felt that the woods and rivers were gracious to us when we walked together beside them. It is true that we didn’t often fish together anymore. We were both in our early thirties now, and “now” from here on is the summer of 1937. My ft tiler had retired and he and mother were living in Missoula, our old home town, and Paul was a reporter in Helena, the state capital. I had “gone off and got married,” to use my brother’s description of this event in my life. At the moment, I was living with my wife’s family in the little town of Wolf Creek, but, since Wolf Creek is only forty miles from Helena, we still saw each other from time to time, which meant, of course, fishing now and then together. In fact, the reason I had come to Helena now was to see him about fishing. The fact also is that my mother-in-law had asked me to. I wasn’t happy, but I was fairly sure my brother would finally say yes. He had never said plain no to me, and he loved my mother-in-law and my wife, whom he included in the si gn on the wall, even though he could never under-stand “what had come over me” that would explain why marriage had ever crossed my mind. I ran into him in front of the Montana Club, which was built by rich gold miners supposedly on the spot where gold was discovered in Last Chance Gulch.”


Norman Maclean (23 december 1902 – 2 augustus 1990)
Scene uit de film van Robert Redford uit 1992 met Craig Sheffer (Norman) en Brad Pitt (Paul)

 

De Engelse dichteres, schrijfster en vertaalster Sara Coleridge werd geboren op 23 december 1802 in Greta Hall, Keswick. Zie ook alle tags voor Sara Coleridge op dit blog.

The Boy That Would Rather Be Naughty Than Good (Fragment)

Young Ronald one day in a fury was roaring,
His passion still higher and higher was soaring;
Cried he, while the tears from his eyelids were pouring,
“I’d rather be naughty than good!”
To learn stupid lessons I’ll never engage,
I’ll storm, and I’ll bluster and riot and rage,
I ne’er will consent to be kept in a cage,
I will go and walk in the wood.”

His mother, astonished, cried “Ronald, for shame!
This terrible temper unless you can tame,
Such folly the rod must be called to reclaim,
And every one else will be ruffled.
Don’t stare with your eyes, and don’t wrinkle your brow,
Nor stamp and kick up such a dust and a row,
Nor shake your head angrily like the mad cow
Whose horns the old farmer has muffled.

 
Sara Coleridge (23 december 1802 – 3 mei 1852)

 

De Nederlandse dichter-dominee Jan Jakob Lodewijk ten Kate werd geboren op 23 december 1819 in Den Haag. Zie ook alle tags voor J.J.L. ten Kate op dit blog.

Bloemkrans
voor de liefste

Wanneer, ook dán als de andre tekens zwijgen,
De ziel haar zucht in kleuren wedergeeft,
De Min haar blos in ’t rozenblad doet stijgen,
De Erinnring in ’t vergeet-mij-nietje beeft;
Als Hope fladdert in de groene twijgen,
De Rouw in ’t lover der cypresse zweeft;
Als Jaloezij de gele tulp doet hijgen,
De Glorie in de frissen lauwer leeft:

Dan diende ik U een bonte krans te schenken,
Waaruit ge U álle kleuren toe zag wenken
Op ’t levendig fluweel van blad en bloem:
Gij immers zijt mijn Liefde, mijn Herdenken,
Mijn Vreugde en Smart, mijn IJver en mijn Roem,
Die ik de mijne in dood en leven noem!

 

Werd de Liefde eens geknakt

Werd de Liefde eens geknakt in haar tedere knop,
Tot haar blaren verwelkten en vielen,
Geen genegenheids-zon wekt haar leven weer op,
Want maar eens bloeit de lente der zielen.

Is de Hope misleid, dan ontvlucht zij het hart,
En keert weer door beloften noch giften;
Maar de Erinnring blijft achter en leeft van de smart,
En broedt voort op de puinhoop der driften.

Men verhaalt, dat de zwaluw haar nestje ontwijkt,
Als de stormwind de gevel doet kraken;
Maar de nachtuil keert in tot het huis dat bezwijkt,
Waar ze bouwt in een klove der daken.

 

Sonnet op het Sonnet

Geverfde pop, met rinkelen omhangen,
Gebulte jonkvrouw in uw staal’ korset,
Lamzaligste aller vormen, stijf Sonnet!
Wat rijmziek mispunt deed u ’t licht erlangen?

Te klein om één goed denkbeeld op te vangen,
Voor epigram te groot en te koket,
Vooraf geknipt, koepletje voor koeplet,
Kroopt ge onverdiend in onze minnezangen.

Neen! de echte Muze eist vrijheid; en het Lied,
Onhoudbaar uit het zwoegend hart gerezen,
Zij als een bergstroom die zijn band ontschiet!

Gij deugt tot niets, tenzij het deugen hiet,
Om, enkel door de broddelaars geprezen,
Op Geysbeek een berijmd vervolg te wezen.


J.J.L. ten Kate (23 december 1819 – 24 december 1889)

 

De Italiaanse schrijver Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa werd geboren in Palermo op 23 december 1896. Zie ook alle tags voor Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa op dit blog.

Uit: The Leopard (Vertaald door Archibald Colquhoun)

“And the Sedira, all the various Sedira, from the petty one who violated arithmetic at Donnafugata to the major ones at Palermo and Turin, had they not committed a crime by choking such consciences? Don Fabrizio could not know it then, but a great deal of the slackness and acquiescence for which the people of the South were to be criticised during the next decade, was due to the stupid annulment of the first expression of liberty ever offered them. Don Ciccio had said his say. And now his genuine but rarely shown side of “austere man of principle” was taken over by one much more frequent and no less genuine, that of snob. For Tumeo belonged to the zoological species of “passive snob”, a species unjustly reviled nowadays. Of course the word “snob” was unknown in the Sicily of 186o; but just as tuberculosis existed before Koch, so in that remote era there were people for whom to obey, imitate and above all avoid distressing those whom they considered of higher social rank than themselves was the supreme law of life; snobbery, in fact, is the opposite of envy. At that time a man of this type went under various names; he was called “devoted”, “attached”, “faithful;” and life was happy for him since a nobleman’s most fugitive smile was enough to flood an entire day with sun; and accompanied by such affectionate appellatives, the restorative graces were more frequent than they are to-day. Now Don Ciccio’s frankly snobbish nature made him fear causing Don Fabrizio distress, and he searched diligently round for ways to disperse any frowns he might be causing on the Prince’s Olympian brow; the best means to hand was suggesting they should start shooting again; and so they did. Surprised in their afternoon naps some wretched woodcock and another rabbit fell under the marks-men’s fire, particularly accurate and pitiless that day as both Salina and Tumeo were identifying those innocent creatures with Don Calogero Sedira.”


Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa (23 december 1896 – 23 juli 1957)
Claudia Cardinale en Alain Delon in de gelijknamige film van Luchino Visconti, 1963

 

De Hongaarse schrijver Iván Mándy werd geboren op 23 december 1918 in Boedapest. Zie ook alle tags voor Iván Mándy op dit blog.

Uit: The Watermelon Eaters (Vertaald door Albert Tezla)

“And the Sedira, all the various Sedira, from the petty one who violated arithmetic at Donnafugata to the major ones at Palermo and Turin, had they not committed a crime by choking such consciences? Don Fabrizio could not know it then, but a great deal of the slackness and acquiescence for which the people of the South were to be criticised during the next decade, was due to the stupid annulment of the first expression of liberty ever offered them. Don Ciccio had said his say. And now his genuine but rarely shown side of “austere man of principle” was taken over by one much more frequent and no less genuine, that of snob. For Tumeo belonged to the zoological species of “passive snob”, a species unjustly reviled nowadays. Of course the word “snob” was unknown in the Sicily of 186o; but just as tuberculosis existed before Koch, so in that remote era there were people for whom to obey, imitate and above all avoid distressing those whom they considered of higher social rank than themselves was the supreme law of life; snobbery, in fact, is the opposite of envy. At that time a man of this type went under various names; he was called “devoted”, “attached”, “faithful;” and life was happy for him since a nobleman’s most fugitive smile was enough to flood an entire day with sun; and accompanied by such affectionate appellatives, the restorative graces were more frequent than they are to-day. Now Don Ciccio’s frankly snobbish nature made him fear causing Don Fabrizio distress, and he searched diligently round for ways to disperse any frowns he might be causing on the Prince’s Olympian brow; the best means to hand was suggesting they should start shooting again; and so they did. Surprised in their afternoon naps some wretched woodcock and another rabbit fell under the marks-men’s fire, particularly accurate and pitiless that day as both Salina and Tumeo were identifying those innocent creatures with Don Calogero Sedira.”


Iván Mándy (23 december 1918 – 26 oktober 1995)
Adventstijd in Boedapest

 

Zie voor nog meer schrijvers van de 23e december ook mijn vorige blog van vandaag.

 

Giusepe di Lampedusa, Iván Mándy, Christa Winsloe, Albert Ehrenstein, Harry Shearer, Charles Sainte-Beuve, Mathilde Wesendonck, Martin Opitz

De Italiaanse schrijver Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa werd geboren in Palermo op 23 december 1896. Zie ook alle tags voor Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa op dit blog.

Uit: The Leopard (Vertaald door Archibald Colquhoun)

“Don Ciccio was still thundering on: “For you nobles it’s different. You might be ungrateful about an extra estate, but we must be grateful for a bit of bread. It’s different again for profiteers like Sedira with whom cheating is a law of nature. Small folk like us have to take things as they come. You know, Excellency, that my father, God rest his soul, was gamekeeper at the royal shoot of Sant’ Onofrio back in Ferdinand IV’s time, when the English were here? It was a hard life, but the green royal livery and the silver plaque conferred authority. Queen Isabella, the Spaniard, was Duchess of Calabria then, and it was she who had me study, made me what I am now, organist of the Mother Church, honoured by your Excellency’s kindness; when my mother sent off a petition to Court in our years of greatest need, back came five gold ounces, sure as death, for they were fond of us there in Naples, they knew we were decent folk and faithful subjects; when the King came he used to clap my father on the shoulder. ‘Don Liona,’ he said, ‘I wish we’d more like you, devoted to the throne and to my Person.’ Then the officer in attendance used to hand out gold coin. Alms, they call it now, that truly royal generosity; and they call it that so as not to give any themselves; but it was just a reward for loyalty. And if those holy Kings and lovely Queens are looking down at us from heaven to-day, what’ld they say? °The son of Don Leonardo Tumeo betrayed us!’ Luckily the truth is known in Paradise! Yes, Excellency, I know, people like you have told me, such things from royalty mean nothing, they’re just part of the job. That may be true, in fact is true. But we got those five gold ounces, that’s a fact, and they helped us through the winter. And now I could repay the debt my ‘no’ becomes a `yes’! I used to be a ‘faithful subject’, I’ve become a ‘filthy Bourbonite’. Everyone’s Savoyard nowadays! But I take `Savoyards’ with coffee!” And he dipped an invisible biscuit between finger and thumb into an imaginary cup. Don Fabrizio had always liked Don Ciccio, partly because of the compassion inspired in him by all who from youth had thought of themselves as dedicated to the Arts, and in old age, realising they had no talent, still carried on the same activity at lower levels, pocketing withered dreams; and he was also touched by the dignity of his poverty. But now he also felt a kind of admiration for him, and deep down at the very bottom of his proud conscience a voice was asking if Don Ciccio had not perhaps behaved more nobly than the Prince of Salina. »

 
Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa (23 december 1896 – 23 juli 1957)
Claudia Cardinale en Alain Delon in de gelijknamige film van Luchino Visconti, 1963

Doorgaan met het lezen van “Giusepe di Lampedusa, Iván Mándy, Christa Winsloe, Albert Ehrenstein, Harry Shearer, Charles Sainte-Beuve, Mathilde Wesendonck, Martin Opitz”

Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Sara Coleridge, Donna Tartt, Tim Fountain, Marcelin Pleynet, Iván Mándy, J.J.L. ten Kate

De Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver Robert Bly werd geboren op 23 december 1926 in Madison, Minnesota. Zie ook alle tags voor Robert Bly op dit blog.

A Dream On The Night Of First Snow

I woke flour a first-day-of-snow dream.
I dreamt I met a girl in an attic,
who talked of operas, intensely.
Snow has bent the poplar over nearly to the ground,
new snowfall widens the plowing.
Outside maple leaves floated on rainwater,
yellow, matted, luminous.
I found a salamander! and held him.
When I put him down again,
he strode over a log
with such confidence, like a chessmaster,
the front leg first, then the hind
leg, he rose up like a tractor climbing
over a hump in the field
and disappeared toward winter, a caravan going deeper into
mountams,
dogs pulling travois,
feathers fluttering on the lance: of the arrogant men.

 

Poems in Three Parts

1
Oh on an early morning I think I shall live forever!
I am wrapped in my joyful flesh
As the grass is wrapped in its clouds of green.

2
Rising from a bed where I dreamt
Of long rides past castles and hot coals
The sun lies happily on my knees;
I have suffered and survived the night
Bathed in dark water like any blade of grass.

3
The strong leaves of the box-elder tree
Plunging in the wind call us to disappear
Into the wilds of the universe
Where we shall sit at the foot of a plant
And live forever like the dust.

 

Gratitude To Old Teachers

When we stride or stroll across the frozen lake,
We place our feet where they have never been.
We walk upon the unwalked. But we are uneasy.
Who is down there but our old teachers?
Water that once could take no human weight-
We were students then- holds up our feet,
And goes on ahead of us for a mile.
Beneath us the teachers, and around us the stillness.

 
Robert Bly (Madison, 23 december 1926)

Doorgaan met het lezen van “Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Sara Coleridge, Donna Tartt, Tim Fountain, Marcelin Pleynet, Iván Mándy, J.J.L. ten Kate”

Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Sara Coleridge, Donna Tartt, Marcelin Pleynet, Iván Mándy, J.J.L. ten Kate, Tim Fountain

De Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver Robert Bly werd geboren op 23 december 1926 in Madison, Minnesota. Zie ook alle tags voor Robert Bly op dit blog.

For My Son Noah Ten Years Old

Nigh and day arrive and day after day goes by
And what is old remains old and what is young remains young and grows old.
The lumber pile does not grow younger nor the two-by-fours lose their darkness
but the old tree goes on the barn stands without help so many years;
the advocate of darkness and night is not lost.

The horse steps up swings on one leg turns its body
the chicken flapping claws onto the roost its wings whelping and walloping
but what is primitive is not to be shot out into the night and the dark.
And slowly the kind man comes closer loses his rage sits down at table.

So I am proud only of those days that pass in undivided tenderness
when you sit drawing or making books stapled with messages to the world
or coloring a man with fire coming out of his hair.
Or we sit at a table with small tea carefully poured.
So we pass our time together calm and delighted.

 

In Rainy September

In rainy September when leaves grow down to the dark
I put my forehead down to the damp seaweed-smelling sand.
What can we do but choose? The only way for human beings
is to choose.
The fern has no choice but to live;
for this crime it receives earth water and night.

we close the door. “I have no claim on you.”
Dusk comes. “The love I have had with you is enough.”
We know we could live apart from the flock.
The sheldrake floats apart from the flock.
The oaktree puts out leaves alone on the lonely hillside.

Men and women before us have accomplished this.
I would see you and you me once a year.
We would be two kernels and not be planted.
We stay in the room door closed lights out.
I weep with you without shame and without honor.

 

Wanting Sumptuous Heavens

No one grumbles among the oyster clans,
And lobsters play their bone guitars all summer.
Only we, with our opposable thumbs, want
Heaven to be, and God to come, again.
There is no end to our grumbling; we want
Comfortable earth and sumptuous Heaven.
But the heron standing on one leg in the bog
Drinks his dark rum all day, and is content.

 
Robert Bly (Madison, 23 december 1926)

Doorgaan met het lezen van “Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Sara Coleridge, Donna Tartt, Marcelin Pleynet, Iván Mándy, J.J.L. ten Kate, Tim Fountain”

Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Marcelin Pleynet, Iván Mándy, J.J.L. ten Kate, Tim Fountain

De Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver Robert Bly werd geboren op 23 december 1926 in Madison, Minnesota. Zie ook alle tags voor Robert Bly op dit blog.

Snowfall in the Afternoon

1
The grass is half-covered with snow.
It was the sort of snowfall that starts in late afternoon
And now the little houses of the grass are growing dark.

2
If I reached my hands down near the earth
I could take handfuls of darkness!
A darkness was always there which we never noticed.

3
As the snow grows heavier the cornstalks fade farther away
And the barn moves nearer to the house.
The barn moves all alone in the growing storm.

4
The barn is full of corn and moves toward us now
Like a hulk blown toward us in a storm at sea;
All the sailors on deck have been blind for many years.

 

The Hermit

Darkness is falling through darkness
Falling from ledge
To ledge.
There is a man whose body is perfectly whole.
He stands the storm behind him
And the grass blades are leaping in the wind.
Darkness is gathered in folds
About his feet.
He is no one. When we see
Him we grow calm
And sail on into the tunnels of joyful death.

 

At Midocean

All day I loved you in a fever holding on to the tail of the horse.
I overflowed whenever I reached out to touch you.
My hand moved over your body covered
With its dress
Burning rough an animal’s hand or foot moving over leaves.
The rainstorm retires clouds open sunlight
sliding over ocean water a thousand miles from land.

  
Robert Bly (Madison, 23 december 1926)

Doorgaan met het lezen van “Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Marcelin Pleynet, Iván Mándy, J.J.L. ten Kate, Tim Fountain”

Iván Mándy, J.J.L. ten Kate, Christa Winsloe, Albert Ehrenstein, Harry Shearer

De Hongaarse schrijver Iván Mándy werd geboren op 23 december 1918 in Boedapest. Zie ook alle tags voor Iván Mándy op dit blog.

 

Uit: The Watermelon Eaters (Vertaald door Albert Tezla)

“A face was ascending the stairs, a face so long and stony it seemed to be borne on a platter. Its eyes closed, its mouth a straight, hard line. On this blinded face was visible the restaurant with its cold mirrors, tiny tables, and guests who failed to notice the face. The outstretched, dead hand then rose into view, trailing an invisible veil. A blue-gray greatcoat, closed at the neck, held the entire man together like a sack. He passed by the boxes and stopped in the middle under a chandelier. He raised his head in the glittering light; his face and hands glistened, but his tunic remained dark. He stood there wordless, motionless, his face flung open to the light, his hands thrust out. Slowly, slowly, as if searching for someone, he turned to one of the boxes.

Three persons were sitting in the box: two women with a pimply-faced youth. The woman with gray hair lifted her fork, then put it down, and said: “Poor thing.” The girl ate and didn’t look up from her plate. She had thick blonde hair, her arms were firm and darkly tanned as if she were sitting on the edge of a swimming pool.

The boy groped in his pocket.

The girl looked up.

“I will!”

The blind man caught the coin with a sweep of one hand, but by then he was being held by the arms. A waiter with a trimmed mustache was standing behind him; he pushed him forward slowly. The blind man opened his mouth wide, he became an astonished black hole.

“You know that’s not permitted,” and the waiter shoved him down the stairs. The beggar tripped and his hand banged against the banister. He remained there hanging on to it, his head slumped forward lifelessly. The waiter grabbed his shoulders and stood him up on his feet like a rag doll. “Don’t be such an ass!”

Half risen, Károly, the pimply-faced boy, was observing him. His head slumped forward again, and meantime his dark, gaping mouth seemed to sneer. His sister touched his hand.

“Why are you staring?”

Ágnes’s taut, impassive face, with two blue earrings, shut out everything in front of her. She lit a cigarette with lazy, prolonged movements. Singing sounded from below. The blind man was already halfway out on the street; he was singing, meanwhile turning around.”

 

Iván Mándy (23 december 1918 – 26 oktober 1995)

Doorgaan met het lezen van “Iván Mándy, J.J.L. ten Kate, Christa Winsloe, Albert Ehrenstein, Harry Shearer”

Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Marcelin Pleynet, Tim Fountain, Iván Mándy

De Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver Robert Bly werd geboren op 23 december 1926 in Madison, Minnesota. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2009 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2010.

The Buried Train

Tell me about the train that people say got buried
By the avalanche–was it snow?–It was
In Colorado, and no one saw it happen.
There was smoke from the engine curling up

Lightly through fir tops, and the engine sounds.
There were all those people reading–some
From Thoreau, some from Henry Ward Beecher.
And the engineer smoking and putting his head out.

I wonder when that happened. Was it after
High School, or was it the year we were two?
We entered this narrow place, and we heard the sound
Above us–the train couldn’t move fast enough.

It isn’t clear what happened next. Are you and I
Still sitting there in the train, waiting for the lights
To go on? Or did the real train get really buried;
So at night a ghost train comes out and keeps going…

 

SOLITUDE LATE AT NIGHT IN THE WOODS

I
The body is like a November birch facing the full moon
And reaching into the cold heavens.
In these trees there is no ambition, no sodden body, no leaves,
Nothing but bare trunks climbing like cold fire!

II
My last walk in the trees has come. At dawn
I must return to the trapped fields,
To the obedient earth.
The trees shall be reaching all the winter.

III
It is a joy to walk in the bare woods.
The moonlight is not broken by the heavy leaves.
The leaves are down, and touching the soaked earth,
Giving off the odor that partridges love.

Robert Bly (Madison, 23 december 1926)

Een jonge Robert Bly

Doorgaan met het lezen van “Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Marcelin Pleynet, Tim Fountain, Iván Mándy”

Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Marcelin Pleynet, Tim Fountain, Iván Mándy

De Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver Robert Bly werd geboren op 23 december 1926 in Madison, Minnesota. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2009.

 

Watching Television

 

Sounds are heard too high for ears,

From the body cells there is an answering bay;   

Soon the inner streets fill with a chorus of barks.

 

We see the landing craft coming in,   

The black car sliding to a stop,

The Puritan killer loosening his guns.

 

Wild dogs tear off noses and eyes

And run off with them down the street—

The body tears off its own arms and throws them into the air.

 

The detective draws fifty-five million people into his revolver,

Who sleep restlessly as in an air raid in London;

Their backs become curved in the sloping dark.

 

The filaments of the soul slowly separate;   

The spirit breaks, a puff of dust floats up;

Like a house in Nebraska that suddenly explodes.

 

 

Waking from Sleep

 

Inside the veins there are navies setting forth,   

Tiny explosions at the waterlines,

And seagulls weaving in the wind of the salty blood.

 

It is the morning. The country has slept the whole winter.

Window seats were covered with fur skins, the yard was full

Of stiff dogs, and hands that clumsily held heavy books.

 

Now we wake, and rise from bed, and eat breakfast!   

Shouts rise from the harbor of the blood,

Mist, and masts rising, the knock of wooden tackle in the sunlight.

 

Now we sing, and do tiny dances on the kitchen floor.   

Our whole body is like a harbor at dawn;   

We know that our master has left us for the day.

 

 

Robert Bly (Madison, 23 december 1926)

 

 

Doorgaan met het lezen van “Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Marcelin Pleynet, Tim Fountain, Iván Mándy”

Tim Fountain, Marcelin Pleynet, Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, J.J.L. ten Kate, Iván Mándy, Harry Shearer, Albert Ehrenstein, G.A. Sainte-Beuve, Giusepe di Lampedusa, Mathilde Wesendonck, Martin Opitz

De Britse schrijver Tim Fountain werd geboren op 23 december 1967 in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Uit: Icons: Quentin Crisp

 

„If Quentin Crisp had not existed, I doubt anyone would have had the nerve to invent him. With his rouged cheeks, painted toenails and vast ‘bird’s nest’ comb-over hair, the self-styled “stately homo” of England looked like a creature from another planet. And it wasn’t just Crisp’s appearance, which he described as “a leaflet thrust into the hands of astonished bystanders”, that marked him out from the rest of society; his views, too, often made him an outsider. Cleaning was a waste of time because “after the first four years the dust doesn’t get any worse”, sex was “the last refuge of the miserable” and Princess Diana was “trash who got what she deserved”. The celebrated writer and raconteur described himself as a man who was merely famous for wearing make-up, and yet when he died in 1999 it was headline news on the BBC and even the Daily Mail devoted two pages to the subject. But who was the real Quentin Crisp, or to use Mail parlance, “the man behind the mascara”, and what made him such an unlikely superstar?

This was the question the actor Bette Bourne and myself attempted to answer when we went to visit Crisp in New York on a freezing March day in 1999 to research Resident Alien, the play I was writing about him. It provided a fascinating insight. Despite being 90 years old at the time and globally famous (the TV version of his book, The Naked Civil Servant, starring John Hurt, played to millions of people all over the world), Crisp was still living in the tiny, filthy, one-room apartment off the Bowery that he had emigrated to in 1980. The electricity in the building was so weak that it wouldn’t power the doorbell, so Bette had to call him from the box on the corner to get him to let us in. When he did so, the ancient icon greeted us at the door in his trademark fedora hat and scarf and stars-and-stripes brooch before leading us up the narrow staircase to perhaps the most famous bedsit in the world.

Nothing, not even a lifetime of quotes about his hatred of domestic chores, could have prepared me for what I saw. The room was tiny and utterly filthy, the curtains were thick with dirt, which obscured the light, and his tiny two-ring stove was utterly coated in grime. When Crisp first moved into this apartment, someone accused him of having the dust shipped in from Fortnum and Mason; if he had, they must have stopped delivering in recent years because this dirt was real. Crisp clearly practised what he preached.“

 

TimFountain

Tim Fountain (Dewsbury, 23 december 1967)

 

 

De Franse dichter, schrijver en essayist Marcelin Pleynet werd geboren op 23 december 1933 in Lyon. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

Uit: Le Propre du temps

Avec cette langue-ci
bien avant l’injustice
à disposition
comme si c’était possible
je cherche dans l’histoire du temps
de la vérité dans l’erreur

J’ai rêvé…
la flotte achéenne dans le Golfe
les drapeaux tendus
l’or noir brûlant dans les déserts
la fumée épaisse sur nous
grassement payés
un océan de pétrole où flottait la navicella del nostro ingenio

Avec les deux yeux
j’ai rêvé
le grec et l’hébreu en même temps

Pensée en même temps sauvage et bornée : la fratrie universelle
cette machine de guerre du refoulement
“Qui aura le pied assez vif pour en sortir d’un bond ?”
Lequel est le chef ?
Qui commande l’armée ?
Nous sommes légion !

 

Uit: Stanze

Chant IV

Éclair ou tonnerre
Lucrèce ami de tout au monde le dit
ainsi par l’univers s’envolent les pensées de
la nature
Quant à moi en lisant je suis sans maître et sans
pensée
Et je laisse vers moi l’année perdue dans
la matière
Et ces sages roseaux ceux qui disent la science
Et les éclats de leur vie cachée selon le rythme des
héros lorsque je les rencontre dans l’histoire comme
Dante aux enfers
toujours luttant contre l’obscurité
et toujours sans repos
Sans limite là ne sachant plus ce que je peux trouver
avec joie
Et pourtant comme tant d’autres porteurs d’étincelles
dans le vide
Après des siècles ce qui n’est plus continue de chanter
dans la saveur brûlante du plais
ir et de la poésie
où il porta l’art-guerre docti furor arduus Lucreti
le premier
plus proche dans la grande douleur vidée
de l’univers et de l’océan qui l’emporte histoire opéra
de la science logique à la portée de notre histoire
ici
comme à la porte des enfers
AOI.

Pleynet

Marcelin Pleynet (Lyon, 23 december 1933)

 

De Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver Robert Bly werd geboren op 23 december 1926 in Madison, Minnesota. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Snowbanks North of the House

 

Those great sweeps of snow that stop suddenly six

feet from the house …

Thoughts that go so far.

The boy gets out of high school and reads no more

books;

the son stops calling home.

The mother puts down her rolling pin and makes no

more bread.

And the wife looks at her husband one night at a

party, and loves him no more.

The energy leaves the wine, and the minister falls

leaving the church.

It will not come closer

the one inside moves back, and the hands touch

nothing, and are safe.

 

The father grieves for his son, and will not leave the

room where the coffin stands.

He turns away from his wife, and she sleeps alone.

 

And the sea lifts and falls all night, the
moon goes on

through the unattached heavens alone.

 

The toe of the shoe pivots

in the dust …

And the man in the black coat turns, and goes back

down the hill.

No one knows why he came, or why he turned away,

and did not climb the hill.

 

 

The Cat in the Kitchen

(For Donald Hall)

 

Have you heard about the boy who walked by

The black water? I won’t say much more.

Let’s wait a few years. It wanted to be entered.

Sometimes a man walks by a pond, and a hand

Reaches out and pulls him in.

 

There was no

Intention, exactly. The pond was lonely, or needed

Calcium, bones would do. What happened then?

 

It was a little like the night wind, which is soft,

And moves slowly, sighing like an old woman

In her kitchen late at night, moving pans

About, lighting a fire, making some food for the cat.

 

bly2

Robert Bly (Madison, 23 december 1926)

 

De Amerikaanse schrijver Norman Fitzroy Maclean werd geboren op 23 december 1902 in Clarinda, Iowa. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Uit: Young Men and Fire

 

„Then Dodge saw it. Rumsey and Sallee didn’t, and probably none of the rest of the crew did either. Dodge was thirty-three and foreman and was supposed to see; he was in front where he could see. Besides, he hadn’t liked what he had seen when he looked down the canyon after he and Harrison had returned to the landing area to get something to eat, so his seeing powers were doubly on the alert. Rumsey and Sallee were young and they were crew and were carrying tools and rubbernecking at the fire across the gulch. Dodge takes only a few words to say what the “it” was he saw next: “We continued down the canyon for approximately five minutes before I could see that the fire had crossed Mann Gulch and was coming up the ridge toward us.”

Neither Rumsey nor Sallee could see the fire that was now on their side of the gulch, but both could see smoke coming toward them over a hogback directly in front. As for the main fire across the gulch, it still looked about the same to them, “confined to the upper third of the slope.”

At the Review, Dodge estimated they had a 150- to 200-yard head start on the fire coming at them on the north side of the gulch. He immediately reversed direction and started back up the canyon, angling toward the top of the ridge on a steep grade. When asked why he didn’t go straight for the top there and then, he answered that the ground was too rocky and steep and the fire was coming too fast to dare to go at right angles to it.

You may ask yourself how it was that of the crew only Rumsey and Sallee survived. If you had known ahead of time that only two would survive, you probably never would have picked these two—they were first-year jumpers, this was the first fire they had ever jumped on, Sallee was one year younger than the minimum age, and around the base they were known as roommates who had a pretty good time for themselves. They both became big operators in the world of the woods and prairies, and part of this story will be to find them and ask them why they think they alone survived, but even if ultimately your answer or theirs seems incomplete, this seems a good place to start asking the question. In their statements soon after the fire, both say that the moment Dodge reversed the route of the crew they became alarmed, for, even if they couldn’t see the fire, Dodge’s order was to run from one. They reacted in seconds or less. They had been traveling at the end of the line because they were carrying unsheathed saws. When the head of the line started its switchback, Rumsey and Sallee left their positions at the end of the line, put on extra speed, and headed straight uphill, connecting with the front of the line to drop into it right behind Dodge.“

 

MacLean

Norman Maclean (23 december 1902 – 2 augustus 1990)
Portret door Janet Hamlin

 

De Nederlandse dichter-dominee Jan Jakob Lodewijk ten Kate werd geboren op 23 december 1819 in Den Haag. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2007 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Het nachtegaaltje.

Een woord vooraf aan de kleine Lezers.

 

In zijn groene looverzaaltje,

Waar het warme zonnestraaltje

Vriendelijkjes binnenschiet,

Zingt het vrolijk nachtegaaltje

Onvermoeid zijn lentelied.

 

Wat al deuntjes kwinkeleert hij,

Wat al trillertjes schakeert hij,

Zoet en zangrig voor ’t gehoor!

En geen ander loon begeert hij

Dan een toegenegen oor.

‘k Weet een boekje met gedichtjes,

Vol van prentjes en gezichtjes,

En van buiten marokijn:

Laat dat boekje, zoete wichtjes,

U een nachtegaaltje zijn!

 

Neemt de proef eens, lievelingen!

Kijkt het in, en ’t zal u zingen,

Mooije liedjes bij de vleet,

Snaaksche stukjes, wondre dingen,

Die ge zeker nooit vergeet!

 

Mogt ge dat de waarheid vinden,

Lieve kindren, welbeminden!

Grooter vreugde hadt ge niet,

Dan het drietal kindervrinden,

Dat u ’t nachtegaaltje biedt!

 

TenKate
J.J.L. ten Kate (23 december 1819 – 24 december 1889)
Portret van J.J.L. ten Kate, door H.F.C. Ten Kate / J.P. Lange.

 

 

De Hongaarse Iván Mándy werd geboren op 23 december 1918 in Boedapest. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2007 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Uit: Sylvia Plath

 

„Why does she mean so much to me? Maybe the most since Dostoevsky? It would be hard to explain. Besides, like all explanations in general, it’s not necessary to do so. So? The Bell Jar is on my shelf. I could never part with it, not even for a day. Actually, I don’t have lots of books. I am likely, at any time, to give a book to anyone, and I don’t make a fuss if I don’t get it back. I’ll never lend this book to anybody. Does it give me strength? Encouragement? I hardly think so. It isn’t some sort of nutrient. Do I read it every day? Or at least dip into it? I don’t take it into my hands for months. I feel its presence, though, its constant presence. Even so, whenever I look up at the shelf, an icy terror grips me.

Let’s pause here.

Icy terror.

A drama like hers had never overwhelmed me before. One so sincere and without an ounce of self pity. And yes, so true. A life of torment. And all with such great humor. Once, some time ago, I thought humor was a good protective. Maybe work is. That also kills. But at least it’s a worthy death.

It’s very significant, too that Sylvia Plath never invents anything. She’s not given to speculation. She’s not even concerned about where literature stands in her time. All the while, she is fundamentally modern, however. Such a true, opulent, lively modernity. This noble, aloof talent protects her from being fashionable. No, she won’t be fashionable. Still, she permeates into our lives.

I doubt anyone had any influence on her. Of course, that in itself isn’t a virtue. But what irony and self irony! And so her humor again! For instance, in one of her attempts at suicide. She wants to hang herself, but her body resists. At such a time my body always leaves me in a lurch. We could call this catastrophic humor. But why should we? What’s the point of pasting little labels on things? This is certain: this humor is entirely her own, and inimitable.

What could her weekdays have been like?

I received that book of letters put together by her mother. Unfortunately, I don’t know English. (This is quite depressing.) And so I gaze at the pictures. I turn the pages, I stare at each picture. Just like an old detective trying to track down something. An old detective who no longer has connections anywhere and now just works on his own.

The endpapers are strewn with childhood pictures. The little girl is smiling in nearly all of them. The smile expectant but still a bit anxious. At times her face clouds over and hardens in an odd way. Behind her a garden, a veranda with white columns, a beach, an ocean. Yes, it would be possible to live. The ocean and the beach are recurring backgrounds. The sandy beach in a blazing sun. This is a considerably later picture. Blonde and apparently bronze-brown, Sylvia Plath lies stretched out on the ocean beach. Again, she’s just smiling.“

 

mandy

Iván Mándy (23 december 1918 – 26 oktober 1995)

 

De Amerikaanse schrijver en komische acteur  Harry Shearer werd geboren op 23 december 1943 in Los Angeles. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2007 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Uit: The Huffington Post Blog

 

Hey, Tiger, Lack of Privacy Is Part of the Deal

 

„The spectacle of near-celebrities going on Larry King Live to ask for the return of their privacy has been one of the long-running jokes of our era.  Now Tiger Woods puts a new spin on it with his profound-apology-but-give-me-my privacy press release. 

Memo to Tiger: if you really wanted your privacy, maybe you should just have played championship golf, lived on the prize money, and gone home.  Maybe you shouldn’t have inked dozens of deals with sponsors who were using your name and image to create a bond with potential consumers, a bond that’s implicitly aspirational.  The grandaddy of such advertising in the modern age, of course, is three simple words: “Be Like Mike”.  Once you’re asking people to be like you, you’re inviting them to wonder about the “you” they’re supposed to want to be like.  End of privacy.   In case your agents, lawyers, managers, and other handlers didn’t mention it, that’s the deal.“

 

Shearer

Harry Shearer (Los Angeles, 23 december 1943)

 

De Oostenrijkse expressionistische dichter en schrijver Albert Ehrenstein werd op 23 december 1886 in Wenen geboren. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Uit: Zigeuner

 

“Ich bin schuld. Ich habe der Feuerwehr von Motschidlan die Spritze verschafft. Schon als Kind konnte ich sehr schön schreiben und damals nützte man das aus. Der Onkel entdeckte meine kalligraphischen Fähigkeiten, der Ärger, in der Ferienzeit zu irgend einer Arbeitsleistung gepreßt zu werden, mag in das Konzept gedrungen sein, aber mein Widerstreben und meine Versuche zu entrinnen, nützten mir nicht: ich mußte heran. Während meiner republikanischen Periode betrachtete ich die Affäre als den Schandfleck meines Lebens und später – aus anderen Gründen – ebenfalls. Hätte ich doch damals dem ewigen: »Also geh, Rudolf, sei brav und schreib!« nicht gefolgt!

Es ist nicht zu verhehlen: ich war es, der das Majestätsgesuch abfaßte. Es kam ein günstiger Bescheid und bald darauf das Geld für die Spritze. Zahllose Kataloge, Utensilien und Branduniformen betreffend stellten sich ein. Nun ging es zu Ende mit den Kübeln und Feuerhaken. Unter der Dorfjugend grassierten zwar schon längst kleine Spritzen aus Hollunderholz. Aber die große Spritze der Erwachsenen funktionierte bedeutend besser. Vom Bach aus schoß der Strahl wahrhaftig über die Dorfkirche und dann war er noch so kräftig, daß ein Enterich, der ein wenig abbekam, die Muschel seiner Sehnsucht ungeöffnet liegen ließ und mit einem, die Schlechtigkeit der Welt bloßlegenden »Waat, Waat!« die Flucht ergriff.

 Das Löschgerät also war da, aber woher schnell einen Brand nehmen? Aber noch waren Zigeuner im Orte, Zigeuner, denen nichts Menschliches fremd war: sie eigneten sich alles an. Ihre Hütte stand nahe dem übelriechenden Schlachthaus, hart am Sumpf. Sie nährten sich vom Abfall und den Dingen, die sich gelegentlich zu ihnen fanden. Der Schlachttag war für sie ein Fest. Da durfte der Familienvater, der alte, graulockige Tonek dem Fleischhauer die Kuh hinrichten helfen, kleine Handreichungen fielen für ihn ab, die mit Schimpfwörtern belohnt wurden. Endlich bekam er die ersehnten Kaldaunen an den Kopf geworfen.”

 

ehrenstein

Albert Ehrenstein (23 december 1886 – 8 april 1950)

 

De Franse dichter, schrijver en criticus Charles Augustin Sainte-Beuve werd geboren op 23 december 1804 in Boulogne-sur-Mer. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006 en ook mijn
blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Uit: PORTRAITS LITTÉRAIRES

 

L’ABBÉ PRÉVOST

 

„On a comparé souvent l’impression mélancolique que produisent sur nous les bibliothèques, où sont entassés les travaux de tant de générations défuntes, à l’effet d’un cimetière peuplé de tombes. Cela ne nous a jamais semblé plus vrai que lorsqu’on y entre, non avec une curiosité vague ou un labeur trop empressé, mais guidé par une intention particulière d’honorer quelque nom choisi, et par un acte de piété studieuse à accomplir envers une mémoire. Si pourtant l’objet de notre étude ce jour-là, et en quelque sorte de notre dévotion, est un de ces morts fameux et si rares dont la parole remplit les temps, l’effet ne saurait être ce que nous disons; l’autel alors nous apparaît trop lumineux; il s’en échappe incessamment un puissant éclat qui chasse bien loin la langueur des regrets et ne rappelle que des idées de durée et de vie. La médiocrité, non plus, n’est guère propre à faire naître en nous

un sentiment d’espèce si délicate; l’impression qu’elle cause n’a rien que de stérile, et ressemble à de la fatigue ou à de la pitié. Mais ce qui nous donne à songer plus particulièrement et ce qui suggère à notre esprit mille pensées d’une morale pénétrante, c’est quand il s’agit d’un de ces hommes en partie célèbres et en partie oubliés, dans la mémoire desquels, pour ainsi dire, la lumière et l’ombre se joignent; dont quelque production toujours debout reçoit encore un vif rayon qui semble mieux éclairer la poussière et l’obscurité de tout le reste; c’est quand nous touchons à l’une de ces renommées recommandables et jadis brillantes, comme il s’en est vu beaucoup sur la terre, belles aujourd’hui, dans leur silence, de la beauté d’un cloître qui tombe, et à demi couchées, désertes et en ruine. Or, à part un très-petit nombre de noms grandioses et fortunés qui, par l’à-propos de leur venue, l’étoile constante de leurs destins, et aussi l’immensité des choses humaines et divines qu’ils ont les premiers reproduites glorieusement, conservent ce privilège éternel de ne pas vieillir, ce sort un peu sombre, mais fatal, est commun à tout ce qui porte dans l’ordre des lettres le titre de talent et même celui de génie.“

 

Sainte-Beuve

G.A. Sainte-Beuve (23 december 1804 – 13 oktober 1869)

 

De Italiaanse schrijver Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa werd geboren in Palermo op 23 december 1896. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Uit: The Leopard (Vertaald door Archibald Colquhoun)

 

The daily recital of the Rosary was over. For half an hour the steady voice of the Prince had recalled the Glorious and the Sorrowful Mysteries; for half an hour other voices had interwoven a lilting hum from which,
now and again, would chime some unlikely word: love, virginity, death; and during that hum the whole aspect of the rococo drawing room seemed to change; even the parrots spreading iridescent wings over the silken walls appeared abashed; even the Magdalen between the two windows looked a penitent and not just a handsome blonde lost in some dubious daydream, as she usually was.
Now, as the voices fell silent, everything dropped back into its usual order or disorder. Bendicò, the Great Dane, vexed at having been shut out, came barking through the door by which the servants had left. The women rose slowly to their feet, their oscillating skirts as they withdrew baring bit by bit the naked figures from mythology painted all over the milky depths of the tiles. Only an Andromeda remained covered by the soutane of Father Pirrone, still deep in extra prayer, and it was some time before she could sight the silvery Perseus swooping down to her aid and her kiss.
Thedivinities frescoed on the ceiling awoke. The troops of Tritons and Dryads, hurtling across from hill and sea amid clouds of cyclamen pink toward a transfigured Conca d’Oro,* and bent on glorifying the House of Salina, seemed suddenly so overwhelmed with exaltation as to discard the most elementary rules of perspective; meanwhile the major gods and goddesses, the Princes among gods, thunderous Jove and frowning Mars and languid Venus, had already preceded the mob of minor deities and were amiably supporting the blue armorial shield of the Leopard. They knew that for the next twenty-three and a half hours they would be lords of the villa once again. On the walls the monkeys went back to pulling faces at the cockatoos.“

 

GiuseppeTomasidiLampedusa

Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa (23 december 1896 – 23 juli 1957)

 

De Duitse dichteres en schrijfster Mathilde Wesendonck werd geboren als Agnes Luckemeyer op 23 december 1828 in Elberfeld. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Träume

Sag’, welch’ wunderbare Träume

Halten meinen Sinn umfangen,

Daß sie nicht wie leere Schäume

Sind in ödes Nichts vergangen?

 

Träume, die in jeder Stunde,

Jedem Tage schöner blühn,

Und mit ihrer Himmelskunde

Selig durchs Gemüte ziehn?

 

Träume, die wie hehre Strahlen

In die Seele sich versenken,

Dort ein ewig Bild zu malen:

Allvergessen, Eingedenken!

 

Träume, wie wenn Frühlingssonne

Aus dem Schnee die Blüten küßt,

Daß zu nie geahnter Wonne

Sie der neue Tag begrüßt,

 

Daß sie wachsen, daß sie blühen,

Träumed spenden ihren Duft,

Sanft an deiner Brust verglühen,

Und dann sinken in die Gruft.

 

wesendonck

Mathilde Wesendonck (23 december 1828 – 31 augustus 1902)

 

De Duitse dichter Martin Opitz von Boberfeld werd geboren op 23 december 1597 in Bunzlau (Silezië). Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2008.

 

Sonnet XXXV.

 

    Ich wil diß halbe mich / was wir den Cörper nennen /

Diß mein geringstes Theil / verzehren durch die Glut /

Wil wie Alcmenen Sohn mit vnverwandtem Muth’

Hier diese meine Last / den schnöden Leib / verbrennen /

    Den Himmel auff zu gehn: mein Geist beginnt zu rennen

Auff etwas bessers zu. diß Fleisch / die Handvoll Blut /

Muß außgetauschet seyn vor ein viel besser Gut /

Daß sterbliche Vernunfft vnd Fleisch vnd Blut nicht kennen.

    Mein Liecht entzünde mich mit deiner Augen Brunst /

Auff daß ich dieser Haut/ deß finstern Leibes Dunst /

Deß Kerkers voller Wust vnd Grawens / werd entnommen /

    Vnd ledig / frey vnd loß / der Schwachheit abgethan /

Weit vber alle Lufft vnd Himmel fliegen kan

Die Schönheit an zu sehn von der die deine kommen.

 

opitz1

Martin Opitz  (23 december 1597 – 20 augustus 1639)

Marcelin Pleynet, Tim Fountain, Robert Bly, Norman Maclean, Iván Mándy, Harry Shearer, J.J.L. ten Kate, Albert Ehrenstein, G.A. Sainte-Beuve, Giusepe di Lampedusa, Mathilde Wesendonck, Martin Opitz

De Franse dichter, schrijver en essayist Marcelin Pleynet werd geboren op 23 december 1933 in Lyon. Tussen 1962 en 1982 was hij redacteur bij het invloedrijke blad Tel Quel en werkte hij samen met Philippe Sollers bij L’Infini (Gallimard). Hij was professor voor esthetica aan de Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux Arts in Parijs van 1987 tot 1998. Hij publiceerde talrijke boeken over moderne kunst. Daarnaast schrijft hij gedichten en romans.

 

Uit: La vie à deux ou à trois

 

„La place de la Concorde ouvre la rive gauche sur la rive droite, la périphérie sur le centre, le Paris historique du Louvre sur le Paris de la belle époque, du Petit Palais, du Grand Palais et des Champs-Élysées. Elle est comme la plaque tournante, le centre de l’exposition universelle et permanente des grandes vitrines de la capitale.
Près du pont Alexandre III, les Palais des Expositions se perdent dans l’ouverture panoramique qui les domine, et de l’autre côté, la résidence du président de la République française, l’Élysée, n’est qu’un pavillon de grand luxe. Paris n’a pas de monument. Les siècles ont voulu lui en inventer quelques-uns pour alimenter la chronique. L’Arc de Triomphe, le Sacré-Coeur, la tour Eiffel, des curiosités. Notre-Dame, le Louvre, l’Institut sont comme des aide-mémoire, des rappels discrets d’ouvrages bien connus, des reliures patinées, des livres anciens. Lorsque les Français ont pris la Bastille, ils n’ont pas fait du plein, ils ont fait du vide. Trop de vide peut-être ? Tant de vide que certains n’en sont pas revenus. Si l’on devait donner la formule de l’esprit français, en ce qu’il ne ressemblerait à aucun autre, et en conséquence inquiéterait, je dirais qu’il fait de la place. Non pas comme le baroque italien en manière, en révulsion de regards, en torsions extatiques, mais plus tranquillement pour se complaire et se plaire à lui-même, pour dégager le panorama des croyances inutiles et des autres, pour la circulation, les besoins du plaisir et les jeux rhétoriques de l’esprit. Du siècle de Louis XIV au siècle de Voltaire, même combat. Il faudrait enseigner aux enfants que c’est l’esprit même du siècle de Louis XIV qui renverse la Bastille. Au demeurant, peu importe, tout passe dans l’air vide et plein de musique : sonate, fanfare, orchestre de la lumière. À vous de jouer.“

 

Pleynet

Marcelin Pleynet (Lyon, 23 december 1933)

 

De Britse schrijver Tim Fountain werd geboren op 23 december 1967 in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire. In 1987 ging hij studeren aan Hull University. Zijn eerste grote theatersucces was Resident Alien, gebaseerd op leven en werk van Quentin Crisp. Dekrantenkoppen haalde hij met zijn stuk Sex Addict, voor het eersdt te zien op het Edinburgh Festival in 2004. Op een groot scherm in het theater liet Fountain in zijn onemanshow een homochatbox zien. Voor zijn publiek van het Edinburgh Festival surfte hij langs de profielen van profielensite Gaydar en liet ze een date voor hem uitzoeken door een stemming. Daarna fietste hij naar die date toe, had seks en vertelde de volgende avond aan het publiek hoe het gegaan was.

 

Uit: Sex at the click of a mouse

 

The reason I refuse to give in to Gaydar and the reason I will continue to offer myself up for sex with strangers is the same reason I created the show. I wanted to tell the truth about internet sex and I didn’t want to do it in a prurient, let’s-laugh-at-the-freaks way. I wanted to say that I, too, am a user (which is why I share pictures of my profile during the show and even pictures of my erect penis).

I also wanted to say to my audience: “What do you think of this?” I have had hundreds of partners on the site and scores of my friends have done the same. This virtual world where you can get, in the words of Gaydar, “what you want, when you want it” is an entirely new phenomenon. Previously, this much sex was available to you only if you were rich or powerful or famous. Now, if you are a gay man livin
g in a metropolitan area of Britain, you can get somebody round for a shag in the time it takes to order a pizza.

Night after night during the show, audience members have shared their stories. There was the gay man from Birmingham who arranged a liaison with a gorgeous guy in his thirties who eventually turned out to be in his sixties; and the guy from Leeds who said he just wished there was an equivalent site for straights that cut through all the hypocrisy he had to endure to get a woman into the bedroom.“

 

tim_fountain

Tim Fountain (Dewsbury, 23 december 1967)

 

 

De Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver Robert Bly werd geboren op 23 december 1926 in Madison, Minnesota. Als oprichter-redacteur van het tijdschrift THE FIFTIES en later THE SIXTIES en THE SEVENTIES heeft hij een aanzienlijke invloed uitgeoefend op zijn tijdgenoten en op de jongere generatie dichters in de U.S.A.  In de jaren zestig toonden zijn gedichten een toenemend politiek engagement, in het bijzonder een afkeer van de Vietnamoorlog, en verwierf hij bekendheid door het  voorlezen van eigen werk op  protestbijeenkomsten. Zijn bekendste en succesvolste boek is wellicht

Iron John: A Book About Men. (Nederlands: De Wildeman), waarin hij aan de hand van oeroudeverhalen en legenden probeerde aan te tonen hij de actievemannelijkheid noemt.

 

In Danger from the Outer World

 

This burning in the eyes, as we open doors,

This is only the body burdened down with leaves,

The opaque flesh, heavy as November grass,

Growing stubbornly, triumphant even at midnight.

 

And another day disappears into the cliff,

And the Eskimos come to greet it with sharp cries–

The black water swells up over the new hole.

The grave moves forward from its ambush,

 

Moving over the hills on black feet,

Living off the country,

Leaving dogs and sheep murdered where it slept;

Some shining thing, inside, that has served us well

 

Shakes its bamboo bars–

It may be gone before we wake . . .

 

 

Moving Inward at Last

 

The dying bull is bleeding on the mountain!

But inside the mountain, untouched

By the blood,

There are antlers, bits of oak bark,

Fire, herbs are thrown down.

 

When the smoke touches the roof of the cave,

The green leaves burst into flame,

The air of night changes to dark water,

The mountains alter and become the sea.

 

bly1

Robert Bly (Madison, 23 december 1926)

 

De Amerikaanse schrijver Norman Fitzroy Maclean werd geboren op 23 december 1902 in Clarinda, Iowa. Tot 1913 kregen hij en zijn broer onderwijs van hun vader. In 1909 trok de familie naar Missoula, Montana. De jaren daar waren van grote invloed op het latere werk van Maclean. In 1928 begon hij een studie Engels aan de universiteit van Chicago. Drie jaar later werd hij er al professor en dat zou hij tot aan zijn pensioen in 1973 blijven. Na zijn pensionering begon Maclean op veelvuldig aandringen van zijn kinderen de verhalen te schrijven die hij al zo vaak verteld had. Zijn bekendste boeken zijn A River Runs Through It and Other Stories (1976) enYoung Men and Fire (1992)

 

Uit: A River Runs Through It

 

In our family, there was no clear line between religion and fly fishing. We lived at the junction of great trout rivers in western Montana, and our father was a Presbyterian minister and a fly fisherman who tied his own flies and taught others. He told us about Christ’s disciples being fishermen, and we were left to assume, as my brother and I did, that all first-class fishermen on the Sea of Galilee were fly fishermen and that John, the favorite, was a dry-fly fisherman.

 

It is true that one day a week was given over wholly to religion. On Sunday mornings my brother, Paul, and I went to Sunday school and then to “morning services” to hear our father preach and in the evenings to Christian Endeavor and afterwards to “evening services” to hear our father preach again. In between on Sunday afternoons we had to study The Westminster Shorter Catechism
for an hour and then recite before we could walk the hills with him while he unwound between services. But he never asked us more than the first question in the catechism, “What is the chief end of man?” And we answered together so one of us could carry on if the other forgot, “Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy Him forever.” This always seemed to satisfy him, as indeed such a beautiful answer should have, and besides he was anxious to be on the hills where he could restore his soul and be filled again to overflowing for the evening sermon. His chief way of recharging himself was to recite to us from the sermon that was coming, enriched here and there with selections from the most successful passages of his morning sermon.”

 

Maclean

Norman Maclean (23 december 1902 – 2 augustus 1990)

 

De Hongaarse Iván Mándy werd geboren op 23 december 1918 in Boedapest. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2007.

 

The Deceased (On the Balcony)

 

“They got along quite well together, The furniture and the deceased. He lay slumped in the room opening on the garden. His face resting on the carpet very peacefully, like someone who has finally found refuge. A cheerful red-and-white sprinkling can next to his outstretched arm. He probably started this way for the garden early in the morning. But he fell headlong and the water spilled from the can on to the flowers in the carpet.
The furniture stood around him. The dining table covered with a green cloth,
the high-backed, faintly touchy chairs, the snuff-coloured cupboard.
The aroma of toasted bread could be sensed from somewhere in the kitchen.
The damp glitter of the sunlight streamed in through the open door. The translucent blue sky. The cosy summer morning. Tranquility itself.
Then a door slams shut,
stamping steps,
screams,
shouts,
sobs,
a woman throws herself on the deceased, shakes his shoulders madly.
Ringing telephone,
the room fills with various figures,
ambulance siren,
and they again shake and tug at the deceased.“

 

Mandy

Iván Mándy (23 december 1918 – 26 oktober 1995)

 

De Amerikaanse schrijver en komische acteur  Harry Shearer werd geboren op 23 december 1943 in Los Angeles. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2007.

 

Uit: Forget the Yanks, Here Come the Dutch

 

„Up on the wall were the vision as designs and maps. The team advocated rediscovering the network of canals that New Orleans used to have, canals that have been largely buried by the same mentality that put the Los Angeles River in a concrete coffin. They proposed tearing down the ugly (and fatally flawed) walls that line the drainage canals that remain in New Orleans, and opening neighborhoods to a view of those canals — waterfront living, anyone?

And, unlike the planners who gleefully descended on the city in the wake of Katrina, welcoming it as a “clean slate” for their notions, the Dutch proclaimed respect for the street grid, the circulation system of the communities, and for the cultural history of the neighborhoods.

It was, in short, an inspiring trip to Dreamland. In reality, the future of New Orleans is still in the hands of the water warriors who almost succeeded in drowning it. Not that the candidates noticed.“

 

Harry_Shearer

Harry Shearer (Los Angeles, 23 december 1943)

 

De Nederlandse dichter-dominee Jan Jakob Lodewijk ten Kate werd geboren op 23 december 1819 in Den Haag. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006 en ook mijn blog van 23 december 2007.

Verbleekte driekleur

Hoe is uw lief gelaat zo bleek,
Dat eenmaal zo vriendlijk kon blozen?
Ach, als de zuivre zonne week,
Verbleken de lachende rozen.

Hoe is uw voorhoofd nu zo dof,
Zo stroef en zo droef en zo duister?
Ach, als de wind ze sleurde in ’t stof,
Verliezen de lelies hun luister.

Hoe staan die oogjes nu zo flauw,
In wenende wimpers verscholen?
Ach, drijvende in te kille dauw,
Besterven de blauwe violen.

Ten_Kate

J.J.L. ten Kate (23 december 1819 – 24 december 1889)
Portret door A.J. Ehnle

 

De Oostenrijkse expressionistische dichter en schrijver Albert Ehrenstein werd op 23 december 1886 in Wenen geboren. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006.

 

Friede

 

Die Bäume lauschen dem Regenbogen,
Tauquelle grünt in junge Stille,
Drei Lämmer weiden ihre Weiße,
Sanftbach schlürft Mädchen in sein Bad.

 

Rotsonne rollt sich abendnieder,
Flaumwolken ihr Traumfeuer sterben.
Dunkel über Flut und Flur.

 

Frosch-Wanderer springt großen Auges,
Die graue Wiese hüpft leis mit.
Im tiefen Brunnen klingen meine Sterne.
Der Heimwehwind weht gute Nacht
.

 

Ehrenstein

Albert Ehrenstein (23 december 1886 – 8 april 1950)

 

De Franse dichter, schrijver en criticus Charles Augustin Sainte-Beuve werd geboren op 23 december 1804 in Boulogne-sur-Mer. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006.

 

Enfant, je m’étais

Enfant, je m’étais dit et souvent répété :
” Jamais, jamais d’amour ; c’est assez de la gloire ;
En des siècles sans nombre étendons ma mémoire,
Et semons ici-bas pour l’immortalité. “

Plus tard je me disais : ” Amour et volupté,
Allez, et gloire aussi ! que m’importe l’histoire ?
Fantôme au laurier d’or, vierges au cou d’ivoire,
Je vous fuis pour l’étude et pour l’obscurité. “

Ainsi, jeune orgueilleux, ainsi longtemps disais-je ;
Mais comme après l’hiver, en nos plaines, la neige
Sous le soleil de mars fond au premier beau jour,

Je te vis, blonde Hélène, et dans ce coeur farouche,
Aux rayons de tes yeux, au souffle de ta bouche,
Aux soupirs de ta voix, tout fondit en amour.

sainte-beuve

G.A. Sainte-Beuve (23 december 1804 – 13 oktober 1869)

 

De Italiaanse schrijver Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa werd geboren in Palermo op 23 december 1896. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 december 2006.

Uit: Der Gattopardo (Vertaald door Gio Waeckerlin Induni)

„Auf der Deckenfreske erwachten die Gottheiten. Die Heerscharen der Tritonen und Driaden, die zwischen himbeer- und lilaroten Wolken von den Bergen und Meeren zu einer verklärten Conca dOro stürmten, das Haus Salina zu verherrlichen, waren von so viel jähem Frohlocken beseelt, dass sie anscheinend die einfachsten perspektivischen Regeln missachteten, während die Hauptgötter, die Fürsten unter den Göttern, der Blitze schleudernde Zeus, der finster blickende Mars, die schmachtende Venus, den Haufen Mindere überflügelt hatten und leutselig das blaue Pardelwappen stützten, wussten sie doch, dass sie jetzt für dreiundzwanzigeinhalb Stunden wieder die Herrschaft über die Villa innehaben würden. An den Wänden schnitten die Makakenäffchen den cacatoés wieder Grimassen.

Unter diesem palermischen Olymp stiegen auch die Sterblichen des Hauses Salina eilig von den mystischen Sphären nieder. Die Töchter glätteten ihre Röcke, tauschten zartblaue Blicke und Wörter im Klosterschülerinnenjargon. Schon vor über einem Monat, vom Tag der »Unruhen« des Vierten Aprils an, waren sie vorsorglich nach Hause geholt worden, und sie trauerten den Baldachin-Schlafsälen und der kollektiven Intimität des Pensionats nach. Schon rauften sich die jüngeren Söhne um ein Bildchen des heiligen Franz von Paola; der älteste, Herzog Paolo, der Erbe, hätte am liebsten jetzt schon geraucht, doch zu schüchtern, es in Anwesenheit der Eltern zu tun, betastete er verstohlen das geflochtene Stroh des Zigarettenetuis; metaphysische Melancholie trat in sein schmales Gesicht; der Tag war unerfreulich gewesen: Guiscardo, der irische Falbe, hatte lustlos gewirkt, und Fanny hatte keine Möglichkeit (oder keine Lust?) gehabt, ihm das gewohnte veilchenblaue Briefchen zukommen zu lassen. Wozu war der Erlöser Fleisch geworden, wozu? Die Fürstin liess in ungeduldigem Hochmut den Rosenkranz brüsk in das mit jais bestickte Ridikül fallen, während ihre schönen manischen Augen flüchtig über die unterwürfigen Kinder und den tyrannischen Gatten glitten, dem sich der winzige Körper im müssigen Verlangen nach liebender Unterwerfung entgegenbeugte.“

Giuseppe_Tomasi_di_Lampedusa-b0fd8

Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa (23 december 1896 – 23 juli 1957)

 

De Duitse dichteres en schrijfster Mathilde Wesendonck werd geboren als Agnes Luckemeyer op 23 december 1828 in Elberfeld. In het revolutiejaar 1848 trouwde Mathilde Wesendonck in Düsseldorf met de zijdehandelaar Otto Wesendonck. Het echtpaar vestigde zich enkele jaren later in Zürich. Daar leerden beiden de componist Wagner kennen, die om politieke redenen uit Saksen was uitgeweken: Otto werd de mecenas van de componist en Mathilde diens muze. Wagner en zijn vrouw Minna kregen onderdak in de directe nabijheid van de villa die de Wesendoncks in 1857 in Zürich hadden laten bouwen. Mathilde kreeg er inzage in het libretto van Wagners nog onvoltooide opera Tristan en Isolde en schreef daarop een vijftal gedichten, die de componist op muziek zette en bekend zouden worden als de Wesendonck-Lieder. Het zijn de enige door Wagner ge
toonzette teksten die de componist niet zelf heeft geschreven.

 

 

Der Engel

In der Kindheit frühen Tagen
Hört’ ich oft von Engeln sagen,
Die des Himmels hehre Wonne
Tauschen mit der Erdensonne,

Daß, wo bang’ ein Herz in Sorgen
Schmachtet vor der Welt verborgen,
Daß, wo still es will verbluten,
Und vergehn in Tränenfluten,

Daß, wo brünstig sein Gebet
Einzig um Erlösung fleht,
Da der Engel niederschwebt,
Und es sanft gen Himmel hebt.

Ja, es stieg auch mir ein Engel nieder,
Und auf leuchtendem Gefieder
Führt er, ferne jedem Schmerz,
Meinen Geist nun himmelwärts

mathilde1850

Mathilde Wesendonck (23 december 1828 – 31 augustus 1902)

 

 De Duitse dichter Martin Opitz von Boberfeld werd geboren op 23 december 1597 in Bunzlau (Silezië). Hij werd door zijn landgenoten als de grootste dichter aller tijden gezien werd en maakte er geen geheim van dat hij zich voor zijn dichtkunst van buitenlandse voorbeelden bediende. Het waren met name twee dichters: de Fransman Pierre Ronsard en de Nederlander Daniel Heinsius. In de voorrede tot zijn Teutsche Poëmata uit 1624 (de titel van zijn gedichtenbundel is ontleend aan Heinsius’ Nederduytsche Poëmata ) noemt hij Heinsius ‘der Niederländische Apollo’ en spreekt van diens ‘vbernatürliche Geschickligkeit’. Opitz was ook de schrijver van het Buch von der deutschen Poeterey, dat als richtsnoer voor de Duitse dichtkunst gebruikt werd.

 

Sonnet XXXIX

 

  EIn jeder spricht zu mir / dein Lieb ist nicht dergleichen
Wie du sie zwar beschreibst: ich weiß es warlich nicht /
Ich bin fast nicht mehr klug; der scharffen Sinnen Liecht
Vermag gar kaum was weiß vnd schwartz ist zu erreichen.
Der so im Lieben noch was weiß herauß zustreichen /
Durch vrtheil vnd verstandt / vnd kennt auch was gebricht /
Der liebet noch nicht recht. Wo war ist was man spricht /
So hat der welcher liebt der sinnen gar kein zeichen /
Vnd ist ein lauter Kind. Wer schönheit wehlen kan /
Vnd redet recht darvon der ist ein weiser Mann.
Ich weiß nicht wie ich doch die Fantasie gelose /
Vnd was die süsse Sucht noch endlich auß mir macht:
Mein wissen ist dahin / der Tag der ist mir Nacht /
Vnd eine Distelblüt’ ist eine schöne Rose

 

opitz

Martin Opitz  (23 december 1597 – 20 augustus 1639)