31 July 2010

It is such a secret place, the land of tears ...

It is been a while since I discovered that human beings don't impress me. Days passed by and my opinion about them did not improve very much. The human predictability is so disappointing. The friendship is dead. 
Sometimes all you need is a word of comfort, a sincere hug ... a smile ... but unfortunately people are too busy living their lives ... they can not share a minute with you ... their time is precious ... and you ... not so much. 
Life carries on. 
The sun always comes back ... 

The Little Prince - Chapter 7

On the fifth day--again, as always, it was thanks to the sheep--the secret of the little prince's life was revealed to me. Abruptly, without anything to lead up to it, and as if the question had been born of long and silent meditation on his problem, he demanded:

"A sheep--if it eats little bushes, does it eat flowers, too?"

"A sheep," I answered, "eats anything it finds in its reach."

"Even flowers that have thorns?"

"Yes, even flowers that have thorns."

"Then the thorns--what use are they?"

I did not know. At that moment I was very busy trying to unscrew a bolt that had got stuck in my engine. I was very much worried, for it was becoming clear to me that the breakdown of my plane was extremely serious. And I had so little drinking-water left that I had to fear for the worst.

"The thorns--what use are they?"

The little prince never let go of a question, once he had asked it. As for me, I was upset over that bolt. And I answered with the first thing that came into my head:

"The thorns are of no use at all. Flowers have thorns just for spite!"


There was a moment of complete silence. Then the little prince flashed back at me, with a kind of resentfulness:

"I don't believe you! Flowers are weak creatures. They are naïve. They reassure themselves as best they can. They believe that their thorns are terrible weapons . . ."

I did not answer. At that instant I was saying to myself: "If this bolt still won't turn, I am going to knock it out with the hammer." Again the little prince disturbed my thoughts:

"And you actually believe that the flowers--"

"Oh, no!" I cried. "No, no, no! I don't believe anything. I answered you with the first thing that came into my head. Don't you see--I am very busy with matters of consequence!"

He stared at me, thunderstruck.

"Matters of consequence!"

He looked at me there, with my hammer in my hand, my fingers black with engine-grease, bending down over an object which seemed to him extremely ugly . . .

"You talk just like the grown-ups!"

That made me a little ashamed. But he went on, relentlessly:

"You mix everything up together . . . You confuse everything . . ."

He was really very angry. He tossed his golden curls in the breeze.

"I know a planet where there is a certain red-faced gentleman. He has never smelled a flower. He has never looked at a star. He has never loved any one. He has never done anything in his life but add up figures. And all day he says over and over, just like you: 'I am busy with matters of consequence!' And that makes him swell up with pride. But he is not a man--he is a mushroom!"

"A what?"

"A mushroom!"

The little prince was now white with rage.

"The flowers have been growing thorns for millions of years. For millions of years the sheep have been eating them just the same. And is it not a matter of consequence to try to understand why the flowers go to so much trouble to grow thorns which are never of any use to them? Is the warfare between the sheep and the flowers not important? Is this not of more consequence than a fat red-faced gentleman's sums? And if I know--I, myself--one flower which is unique in the world, which grows nowhere but on my planet, but which one little sheep can destroy in a single bite some morning, without even noticing what he is doing--Oh! You think that is not important!"

His face turned from white to red as he continued:

"If some one loves a flower, of which just one single blossom grows in all the millions and millions of stars, it is enough to make him happy just to look at the stars. He can say to himself, 'Somewhere, my flower is there . . .' But if the sheep eats the flower, in one moment all his stars will be darkened . . . And you think that is not important!"

He could not say anything more. His words were choked by sobbing.

The night had fallen. I had let my tools drop from my hands. Of what moment now was my hammer, my bolt, or thirst, or death? On one star, one planet, my planet, the Earth, there was a little prince to be comforted. I took him in my arms, and rocked him. I said to him:

"The flower that you love is not in danger. I will draw you a muzzle for your sheep. I will draw you a railing to put around your flower. I will--"

I did not know what to say to him. I felt awkward and blundering. I did not know how I could reach him, where I could overtake him and go on hand in hand with him once more.

It is such a secret place, the land of tears.

30 July 2010

Innocence is gone ...

Dreams are part of our reality ... The dreams and our imagination give meaning to life, though most of the times dreams are just what they are: just dreams. 

All I got is my solitude and a fading hope that one day I will not feel so vulnerable ...  the day the words will no longer mean anything ... the day I will not be waiting for a moment of attention ... the day I will just be myself ... carrying my sad eyes around, collecting my own pieces  ... trying to find my broken wings ... 

In The Wake Of Adversity by Dead Can Dance 

Hey Patrice don't cry they've no reason to harm you at all
They don't realise that the angels surround you with light
They don't understand their narrow ways defeat them where they stand
They don't realise you hide your sadness beneath a painted smile

Ignorance, that light of fools steers a wayward path
And sets the course upon which we sail into the night of uncertainty
Following the stars that make their way across the sky
Valuing the love that lends grace to our hearts
We sail

28 July 2010

The enigma of the absolute by Dead Can Dance

I wish I had all the answers to my questions ... life is just an enigma and everyday is a surprise ...

Saloman hung down her head
Laid bare her heart for the world to see
She craved for intimacy
Through the darkened doors
Her aspect veiled with indecision
Gazed out to sea
She craved lucidity
Cast adrift from past relationships in her life
Hoisted up the ideal
This was her saving grace
Sea's of rage
That once assailed her concern for the truth
Had past her by
And left her high and dry
In her saviors arms
In her saviors arms
In her saviors arms
Across the sea lies the fountain of renewal
Where you will see
The whole cause of your loneliness
Can be measured in dreams
That transcend all these lies
and I wish and I pray
That there may come a day for a saviors arms
for a saviors arms
for a saviors arms
for a saviors arms

27 July 2010

I am just an ordinary woman ...

“I feel the same way about solitude as some people feel about the blessing of the church. It's the light of grace for me. I never close my door behind me without the awareness that I am carrying out an act of mercy toward myself.”

26 July 2010

If You Forget Me by Pablo Neruda

I want you to know
one thing.

You know how this is:
if I look
at the crystal moon, at the red branch
of the slow autumn at my window,
if I touch
near the fire
the impalpable ash
or the wrinkled body of the log,
everything carries me to you,
as if everything that exists,
aromas, light, metals,
were little boats
that sail
toward those isles of yours that wait for me.

Well, now,
if little by little you stop loving me
I shall stop loving you little by little.

If suddenly
you forget me
do not look for me,
for I shall already have forgotten you.

If you think it long and mad,
the wind of banners
that passes through my life,
and you decide
to leave me at the shore
of the heart where I have roots,
that on that day,
at that hour,
I shall lift my arms
and my roots will set off
to seek another land.

if each day,
each hour,
you feel that you are destined for me
with implacable sweetness,
if each day a flower
climbs up to your lips to seek me,
ah my love, ah my own,
in me all that fire is repeated,
in me nothing is extinguished or forgotten,
my love feeds on your love, beloved,
and as long as you live it will be in your arms
without leaving mine

25 July 2010

Cardsharps by Caravaggio

Caravaggio is my favourite painter. He said "you don't just look at my paintings, you feel them" and that is exactly what happens to me, I feel the paintings as if they were alive. 

The painting shows an expensively-dressed but unworldly boy playing cards with another boy. The second boy, a cardsharp, has extra cards tucked in his belt behind his back, out of sight from the mark but not the viewer, and a sinister older man is peering over the dupe's shoulder and signaling to his young accomplice. The second boy has a dagger handy at his side, and violence is not far away. It was the second such painting Caravaggio created. Year 1594.

24 July 2010

Love is contemplation ...

I have lived my life in accordance 
To the windfalls of passion 
Though I know what it means 
To be loved and then forgotten 

I have seen too many men 
Driven insane by their distractions ...

21 July 2010

About dreams ...

The dream is the small hidden door in the deepest and most intimate sanctum of the soul, which opens to that primeval cosmic night that was soul long before there was conscious ego and will be soul far beyond what a conscious ego could ever reach.
                                                                                                CARL JUNG

20 July 2010

Life carries on ...

There are things that we don't want to happen but have to accept, things we don't want to know but have to learn, and people we can't live without but have to let go ...

I Grieve by Peter Gabriel 

It was only one hour ago 
It was all so different then
Nothing yet has really sunk in
Looks like it always did
This flesh and bone
It's just the way that we are tied in
But there's noone home
I grieve...
for you
You leave...
So hard to move on
Still loving what's gone
Said life carries on...
Carries on and on and on...
And on
The news that truely shocks
is the empty, empty page
While the final rattle rocks
Its empty, empty cage...
And I can't handle this
I grieve...
For you
You leave...
Let it out and move on
Missing what's gone
Said life carries on...
I said life carries on and on...
And on
Life carries on in the people I meet
In every one that's out on the street
In all the dogs and cats
In the flies and rats
the rot and the rust
In the ashes and the dust
Life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Just the car that we ride in
The home we reside in
The face that we hide in
The way we are tied in
As life carries on and on and on...
And on
Life carries on and on and on...
Did I dream this belief
Or did I believe this dream
How I will find relief
I grieve...

19 July 2010

The allegory of lust - Venus, Cupid, Folly and Time by Agnolo Bronzino

The allegory of lust “Venus, Cupid, Time and Folly” was painted in 1545. This work is about a rebarbatively frigid eroticism. It was designed as a puzzle, and incorporates symbols and devices from the worlds of mythology and emblematic imagery.

The attention to silky textures, jewels, and masks is consistent with Bronzino's courtly, aristocratic patronage. The figure of Venus appears as a precious object in a luxurious setting, perversely seductive by virtue of her very unapproachability.

Crowded into a compressed foreground space of the airless setting are several figures whose identities and purpose have been the subject of extensive scholarly discussion. The painting appears to be about lust, fraud, and envy. It has also been called a "Triumph of Venus". Its meaning, however, remains elusive.

Venus The goddess of love and beauty, entangled in an incestuous act, identified by the golden apple given to her by Paris and by her doves, has drawn Cupid's arrow, who fondles his mother's breast and kisses her lips. At her feet, masks, perhaps the symbols of sensual nymph and satyr, seem to gaze up at the lovers. To the right, foolish pleasure, the laughing nude putto with a lascivious expression dances forward and scatters flowers at them, heedless of the thorn piercing his right foot. Behind him Deceit, fair of face, but foul of body, proffers a sweet honeycomb in one hand, concealing the sting in her tail with the other. On the other side of the lovers is a dark figure, formerly called Jealousy but recently plausibly identified as the personification of Syphilis, a disease probably introduced to Europe from the New World and reaching epidemic proportions by 1500.

Bald, bearded Time at the upper right, assisted by Oblivion at the upper left, draws aside a curtain to reveal the incestuous transgressions of Venus and the adolescent Cupid.

The symbolic meaning of the central scene is revealed to be unchaste love, presided over by Pleasure and abetted by Deceit, and its painful consequences. Oblivion, the figure on the upper left who is shown without physical capacity for remembering, attempts to draw a veil over all, but is prevented by Father Time - possibly alluding to the delayed effects of syphilis. 

It is about love and pain, the magical love that kills at the end. 

18 July 2010

Is life just an illusion ...

'Illusions commend themselves to us because they save us pain and allow us to enjoy pleasure instead. We must therefore accept it without complaint when they sometimes collide with a bit of reality against which they are dashed to pieces."

Sigmund Freud

15 July 2010

The Death of Marat by Jacque-Louis David

The painting "The Death of Marat" by Jacques-Louis David is an unforgettable masterpiece with its beauty and glorification. But it was also a lie. During the French Revolution, one of the bloodiest historical eras, this artwork transformed Marat into a saint, creating an image of virtue out of the most paranoid accomplice of the Reign of Terror.
 Jacques-Louis David was a strong supporter of the French Revolution.  He was a friend of Jean-Paul Marat. Marat was a famous and fiery orator who would stop at nothing to supply Lady Guillotine with victims. As his power as a journalist became more influential, the accused also increased. The relentless bloodshed in France became genocide under the blade of fear, hate and hope.
Charlotte Corday, a farmgirl, was revolted by the mass murders. She felt that Marat was responsible for the misfortunes the French people were undergoing. Determined, she gained access to Marat’s apartment under the pretext that she had a list of traitors. In his bathtub, where he copied down the names of his next victims, she stabbed him in the chest. On July 13, 1793 “The Friend of the People” was gone. Four days after his murder Corday was executed as a tragic heroine of the Revolution. However, brave and noble Marat’s assassination was, he got his revenge. Her actions and words did not stop the Jacobins nor did they extinguish the Terror. Instead Marat’s existence became timeless.
As the official director of revolutionary propaganda, "The Death of Marat" made David who he was as a leader of the arts. It was the most notorious image produced by the Terror. David painted Marat in the pose used to portray Christ in the earlier eras. This glorified Marat as a holy man, a martyr. In the eyes of the people he became a pure and blameless victim in the cruel hands of death.
"The Death of Marat" was almost as if designed to make its viewers think of themselves as virtuous citizens. Usually paintings were made to improve humanity, but instead this lie David translated through art corrupted the people by deceiving them. The wooden box he wrote on connected Marat to the ordinary people. The wound inflicted upon his chest displayed a thin cut almost beautiful - his body void of any other imperfections. The white sheets stained with blood symbolized a crime. The dark background intensifies the significance of the painting. This image became a showcase of honesty and virtue. Marat’s face replaced crucifixes and religious icons and statues that had been removed under the new regime. He became a saint to the supporters of the Revolution.
David’s art was an entire way of life, or rather death, all things considered. His unforgivable crime was that he knew the secret "The Death of Marat" hid from the world. The beautiful yet repulsive image focused on the wrongness of the murder itself, blaming Charlotte Corday, instead of revealing Marat’s irrational, if not crazy nature. It still has the same impact as it did more than a hundred years ago - true symbol of martyrdom. The painting made him, as well as the events of the Revolution, immortal.

14 July 2010


Painting:  Death of Socrates by Jacques-Louis David (read more about this painter tomorrow)

How Fortunate The Man With None

Socrates was the first thinker I read about. I was just a young child, around 9 years old and I was quite impressed by this man, famous for never lying, questioning everybody about everything. He never wrote a single word in his life, the reason why all we know about him was written by his students, specially Plato.

He was the first philosopher that had the courage to say there was only one God when everybody else was venerating multiple gods. Socrates had a very simple life teaching his philosophy and because of that he was accused of enticing young boys.

About Socrates trial

The accusers of Socrates proposed the punishment of death. In proposing death, the accusers might well have expected to counter with a proposal for exile--a punishment that probably would have satisfied both them and the jury. Instead, Socrates audaciously proposes to the jury that he be rewarded, not punished. According to Plato, Socrates asks the jury for free meals in the Prytaneum, a public dining hall in the center of Athens. Socrates must have known that his proposed "punishment" would infuriate the jury. I. F. Stone noted that "Socrates acts more like a picador trying to enrage a bull than a defendant trying to mollify a jury." Why, then, propose a punishment guaranteed to be rejected? The only answer, Stone and others conclude, is that Socrates was ready to die.

To comply with the demand that a genuine punishment be proposed, Socrates reluctantly suggested a fine of one mina of silver--about one-fifth of his modest net worth, according to Xenophon. Plato and other supporters of Socrates upped the offer to thirty minae by agreeing to come up with silver of their own. Most jurors likely believed even the heftier fine to be far too slight of a punishment for the unrepentant defendant.

In the final vote, a larger majority of jurors favored a punishment of death than voted in the first instance for conviction. According to Diogenes Laertius, 360 jurors voted for death, 140 for the fine. Under Athenian law, execution was accomplished by drinking a cup of poisoned hemlock.

In Plato's Apology, the trial concludes with Socrates offering a few memorable words as court officials finished their necessary work. He tells the crowd that his conviction resulted from his unwillingness to "address you as you would have liked me to do." He predicts that history will come to see his conviction as "shameful for Athens," though he professes to have no ill will for the jurors who convict him. Finally, as he is being led off to jail, Socrates utters the memorable line: "The hour of departure has arrived, and we go our ways--I to die, and you to live. Which to the better fate is known only to God." It is likely that this last burst of eloquence comes from Plato, not Socrates. There is no records suggesting that Athenian practice allowed defendants to speak after sentencing.

Socrates spent his final hours in a cell in the Athens jail. The ruins of the jail remain today. The hemlock that ended his life did not do so quickly or painlessly, but rather by producing a gradual paralysis of the central nervous system.

Most scholars see the conviction and execution of Socrates as a deliberate choice made by the famous philosopher himself. If the accounts of Plato and Xenophon are reasonably accurate, Socrates sought not to persuade jurors, but rather to lecture and provoke them.

The trial of Socrates, the most interesting suicide the world has ever seen, produced the first martyr for free speech. As I. F. Stone observed, just as Jesus needed the cross to fulfill his mission, Socrates needed his hemlock to fulfill his.

Dead Can Dance - How fortunate the man with none

You saw sagacious Solomon
You know what came of him,
To him complexities seemed plain.
He cursed the hour that gave birth to him
And saw that everything was vain.
How great and wise was Solomon.
The world however did not wait
But soon observed what followed on.
It's wisdom that had brought him to this state.
How fortunate the man with none.

You saw courageous Caesar next
You know what he became.
They deified him in his life
Then had him murdered just the same.
And as they raised the fatal knife
How loud he cried: you too my son!
The world however did not wait
But soon observed what followed on.
It's courage that had brought him to that state.
How fortunate the man with none.

You heard of honest Socrates
The man who never lied:
They weren't so grateful as you'd think
Instead the rulers fixed to have him tried
And handed him the poisoned drink.
How honest was the people's noble son.
The world however did not wait
But soon observed what followed on.
It's honesty that brought him to that state.

How fortunate the man with none.

Here you can see respectable folk
Keeping to God's own laws.
So far he hasn't taken heed.
You who sit safe and warm indoors
Help to relieve our bitter need.
How virtuously we had begun.
The world however did not wait
But soon observed what followed on.
It's fear of god that brought us to that state.
How fortunate the man with none.

13 July 2010

Dead Can Dance - The Host Of Seraphim

“Poverty is the worst form of violence.” 

  Mahatma Gandhi

12 July 2010

Apollo and Daphne - sculpture by Gian Lorenzo Bernini

Apollo was the god of archery, arts and is often equated with civilisation and culture. The story goes that Apollo saw cupid playing with arrows and started mocking him, telling cupid that little boys had no business playing with toys of war. Cupid, understandably got angry and replied: “Your arrows may strike all things else, Apollo, but mine shall strike you.” He then grabbed two arrows, one to make people fall in love, and on to repel love. Cupid hit Apollo with the arrow to initiate love, and the nymph Daphne with one the one to repel it. Apollo fell madly in love with Daphne, but she didn’t like the idea of love. She had heaps of suitors but didn’t give any the time of day, and asked her father to allow her to be single and remain unmarried. 
For a while Apollo admired her from afar but one day after seeing her in the woods he began to follow her. Daphne spotted him and started to run away-and Apollo started chasing her. Seeing that she was loosing the race, she asked her father Peneus to save her from Apollo’s touch. Her plea was answered and almost instantly her limbs started turning into bark. Slowly the nymph was transformed into a tree. Apollo was stunned, he went forward and gently kissed the tree. There he pledged that if he could not have Daphne as a wife he would be the patron of her tree. He also cast a spell on the tree ensuring that it would always be green, that its leaves would never decay-just as Daphne’s beauty would never decay. Daphne had transformed into the laurel tree-which is why Apollo is always seen wearing a laurel crown. The Caesars of Rome all crowned themselves with laurels in tribute to Apollo and his lost love.

Bernini's sculpture captures Daphne's transformation with intense emotion and drama by portraying the different stages of her changes.

11 July 2010

Brendan Perry (Dead Can Dance) - The Captive Heart

The old clock is ticking now 
Marks the space between us 
Your memory enshrouds my heart 
For I am held a captive 

Sometimes my soul desires 
To take leave of this old world 
To spread these golden wings and fly 
To the city of angels 

But then if I close my eyes 
I can see you standing there 
Your face in permanence smiles 
Your lips a chalice 

Seems like I've loved you all my life 
Never thought I'd find you 
One day the muse may lend these words wings 
So I can touch you 

But hey! 
Don't worry if the feelings not strong for you 
I have lived my life in accordance 
To the windfalls of passion 
Though I know what it means 
To be loved and then forgotten 

I have seen too many men 
Driven insane by their distractions


“Relationships are like glass. Sometimes it is better to leave them broken than try to hurt yourself putting it back together.”