Thursday, April 2, 2009

A Sad Time

We're experiencing a rough patch right now. WP's mother and my dear friend Alice is fading fast. It seems as if it happened overnight. Her final hour will soon be upon us.

Hospice is in, as Alice has chosen to die at home and wishes no resuscitation. WP is on his way home from a business trip to Las Vegas and his daughter is flying in early tomorrow morning from San Francisco.

I will be back when I can.

Oh heart, if one should say to you that the soul perishes like the body, answer that the flower withers, but the seed remains.
~Kahlil Gibran

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Happy Spring

View of Arles
Vincent Van Gogh
(click to enlarge)

I've been posting some weird art lately, so tonight I thought I'd wish you all a happy Spring Equinox and post something beautiful.
Are those not the most incredible blues and purples you've ever seen?

Pagan Sphinx

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Music for Sunday #1

I'm not quite sure what I want to do with this. But maybe I've hatched a new weekly meme. I don't know.

Not that many people listen to what I post. Which is fine. Not only is listening to people's youtube postings and jukeboxes time consuming but there are so many musical choices for so many tastes, that I'm the first to admit that it's not always easy to relate to what people consider to be good music. I'm guilty of this. I am mostly out of sync with mainstream music. I know very little classical music. I like jazz a lot but I'm not an expert. I'm not sure how I would characterize my favorite music. With that said, posting music is mostly a self-indulgent habit. I come to groove on my own blog, look at the images, ruminate and play the song du jour very loud on my cordless headphones (thanks WP!).

I like loud music. Everything from Beatles to Aboriginal digeredoo. I like folk music and country (see this post featuring Loretta Lynn) but not "new country". I like music that is theatrical to my ear like XTC and the songs of Tom Waits. Well-written, literate and poetic. And by poetic, I don't necessarily mean like Simon and Garfunkel were poetic. Although I do like them, too. Poetic as in Joni Mitchell and Peter Gabriel, Suzanne Vega and Bob Dylan.

Quirky female singer-songwriters like Jane Sibery and Kate and Anna McGarrigle are another genre, if it is one, that floats my boat. The McGarrigles are eccentric and lovely and very Canadian. I love the French songs they include in some of their recordings. I think I may be in a small league as one of their biggest fans.

And Jane Sibery with her songs about cows and red wagons and love and death, all from a perspective that can only be described as grown up fairy tales and magic of all sorts. I adore her songs.

But my choice for today is really pretty accessible, I think. I'm going way back to a song I loved as a kid and doubtless will want to play for my grandchildren. James Taylor (the gorgeous then and always), Sweet Baby James.

And you? If you want to post something musical on your blog and link to it from comments here, I will make it a special point to listen with open ears and open mind. :-)

Have a good week, kids.

All the Love,
Pagan Sphinx

Seven Deadly Sins: Envy

“Envy is more implacable than hatred.”
- de La Rochefoucauld

Seeing as I'm on this Dante kick, I thought I'd post about Envy (also know as indivia in Italian)from that perspective, with perhaps a few other random things thrown in. We'll see where this goes.

According to Dante Alighieri's tour in The Divine Comedy's Inferno installment, there are nine concentric circles of Hell. Each circle representing a gradual increase in wickedness. Each circle's sinners are punished in a manner fitting to their crime.

Dante defined Envy as "love of one's own good perverted to a desire to deprive other men of theirs."

The envious end up in the second tier. Their punishment
is severe: they have their eyes sewn shut with wire, because they have gained pleasure from seeing those they envy brought down.

photo by Pagan Sphinx

Marcel Jean Specter of the Gardenia

(The choice of this sculpture is purely my own connection, as I have not been able to find any information about it and its title certainly does not give any indication of its meaning.)

Gustave Doré
Envious Penitents

And no discussion of Dante's Divine Comedy is complete without a mention of William Blake, whose illustrations for the work he is well known for

Dante and Statius Sleeping,Virgil-Watching

Lastly, I came upon this photograph of a sculpture of Blake by James. S. Deville, after uploading the photograph above, that reminded me of the punishment for Envy, in Dante's Inferno.

Join Kay for The Seven Deadly Sins Meme.

Thanks, Kay, this has been very interesting and fun for me; now smitten with both Blake and Dante. Yeah, I know. Once a nerd, always a nerd! ;-)

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