97 posts categorized "Current Affairs"

What can we say?

TilesTiles at the Magic Garden: A floor of harmonious differences

"For as long as I live, I will not let this suffering be normal."

~ 26 year-old US Syrian Aid Worker Kayla Mueller

The eternal symphony of old Ocean

NYTimes_Jul-15_1952bAdvertisement in the New York Times for bus service to Atlantic City; 10 trips daily and extra weekend service / July 15th 1952

"How many claims has Absecon Beach upon the inhabitants of the Middle States, and more especially upon the people of Philadelphia. There, beneath the exhilarating influence of the saline air and surging surf, we take our summer's salty solace, and shuffle off the accumulation of fatigue under which a winter's weary work has made us suffer. There, too, we meet our old accustomed friends, not to buy and sell—not to talk horse, grain, or iron with them—not to waste the day in wordy wrangle with them about stocks, bonds, and the fluctuations of the gold market—but we meet them to read, convulsed with laughs, the funny bill of fare of an enterprising hotel keeper, who loves to make amusement for his friends by providing them with food for their risible, as well as for their corporeal appetites, and also by providing them with the true pleasure ever experienced in the poetry of motion at the gigantic hops, where the dancing toe keeps step alike, to the music of the band and the eternal symphony of old Ocean."

~ an excerpt from "Atlantic City: Its Early and Modern History," 1868, by Carnesworthe

The way she had been feeling

Meet-her-footDancing above and around the earth / The Magic Garden

"she had grown wary" ... "Assumptions that the earth would be there to meet her foot when she put it down, or that her body would remain upright without expressly willing it were no longer certain, & she found herself hesitating more than she used to, as though to give the world a chance to announce its true intentions."

~ an excerpt from the story "Leap" in the book "Alone With You" by Marisa Silver (via Mitza)

Shecada do sing

ShecadaPaulo's Shecada; and where are the nightcrawlers? / "they are very musical in their tastes, and have wings which are arranged slantwise, like the roof of a house" / circa spring 2013

Now, the cicadas are, almost without Exception, musical. But their song is produced exclusively by the male insects, who are provided for the purpose with a curious resonant, drum-like instrument. It consists of a cavity with a stretched membrane, whose vibration, controlled by muscles, sets up the familiar chirping or stridulating noise so well known to all who have lived in Italy. In warm sunshine these insect vocalists keep up a continuous concert of sweet sounds, intended no doubt to attract the females. Resonators in the body increase the volume of the note, and make it carry further; we had one cicada in our house in Jamaica which sang so loud that we always knew it as the prima donna. We were wrong in the gender, I admit: we ought rather to have said the first tenor; for the females have no song: a fact much commented upon by the malicious Greek poet— doubtless a married man, tied to a loquacious Athenian lady :—

Happy the cicadas' lives
Since they all have voiceless wives.

~ The Strand Magazine, Volume 18, 1899

The highest degree of human wisdom

Boston_skylineBoston skyline at Copley Square turned sideways / July 2007

Leo Tolstoy:

“If everyone fought only for his own convictions, there would be no wars.” (War and Peace)


“We can know only that we know nothing. And that is the highest degree of human wisdom.” (War and Peace)


“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”


“I've always loved you, and when you love someone, you love the whole person, just as he or she is, and not as you would like them to be.” (Anna Karenina)


“If you look for perfection, you'll never be content.” (Anna Karenina)


"Nothing can make our life, or the lives of other people, more beautiful than perpetual kindness."

Waiting for us to map it

Obama_parade_marchPresident Obama and Michelle Obama walk in our Inaugural day parade / Washington, DC / January 21, 2013

One sun rose on us today, kindled over our shores, ...

My face, your face, millions of faces in morning's mirrors, ...

All of us as vital as the one light we move through, ...

One ground. Our ground, rooting us to every stalk ...


We head home: through the gloss of rain or weight
of snow, or the plum blush of dusk, but always—home,
always under one sky, our sky. And always one moon
like a silent drum tapping on every rooftop
and every window, of one country—all of us—
facing the stars
hope—a new constellation
waiting for us to map it,
waiting for us to name it—together.

~ an excerpt from Inaugural poet Richard Blanco's poem "One Today" read at the swearing-in ceremony for President Obama.

For Malala

Books_for_malalaEvery girl deserves an education / Oct. 2012

“She was just the girl who wanted to go to school” ~ Mirza Waheed

"She lives in Swat Valley and was there several years ago when the Taliban took control and began burning down girls' schools. The Pakistani army rolled in, in 2009, to retake the area. Malala wrote an anonymous diary, broadcast on the BBC, about life under the Taliban. She advocated education for girls, and defied the militants' ban on this by secretly going to school with her books hidden in her clothes. Her bravery was recognized last year when she was nominated for the International Children's Peace Prize." (NPR, Phillip Reeves)

"On Tuesday afternoon, Taliban militants attacked and seriously injured Malala Yousafzai, a fourteen-year-old campaigner for education for girls in Mingora, a town in Swat Valley, in Pakistan’s North Western Frontier Province. Malala was returning home from school when the men attacked; ..." (New Yorker)

"Even if they come to kill me, I will tell them what they are trying to do is wrong, that education is our basic right." ~ Malala Yousafzai

The people are on fire

Ows_111711 The other 99% Protestors in Zuccotti Park after marching on Wall St. / I'm marching virtually with 27,527 other viewers around the world / Nov. 17, 2011 (thanks T -- occupy the bridge!)

collusion between
wall street and those elected
to serve their people

the brilliant fall leaves
a visual portrait of our
anger and actions