Are You Hot for Me Yet

August 22, 2019

If you’re not on my hitlist you can go and find another murderer or just fuck off.
Jesus Christ, have you even read Sylvia Plath? We have literally nothing in common.
I pissed about over the ad all day and in the end settled for the tagline ‘terminally bored MILF
likes wrestling, hates love, needs a drug induced coma – apply within.’

Seriously, I wouldn’t fuck with me if I were the last poet on earth and God knows I’m not.
How vulnerable are you on a scale of one to ten? Ten being walks around city centres
with barely anything on and a little-girl pout looking to score coke and one being lives in a self-imposed
regime of silence in a vaulted room? I die every day to save you from seeing me.

Do you like smashing things and breaking things? I don’t need or want permission.
I only get off on causing the maximum amount of damage before the eyes of God.
You need to separate the sex from the poetry – just because you didn’t like how I blew you
doesn’t mean you can play about with my grammatical idiosyncrasies. So get this straight:

I don’t care about your complexities, right? If I take you out of context I want to know
you’ll blend in with the landscape. How regularly do you wear cocktail dresses? Do you know
how to create a convincing persona? We all want to live in a hotel dearie but can you infiltrate
the lives of others successfully? Oh God, you’re a writer? Oh well then, I guess that’s a no.

Melissa Lee-Houghton

When the German lyric poet Friedrich Hölderlin undertook to translate Sophokles’ Antigone in 1796, he met this problem on the first page. The play opens with a distressed Antigone confronting her sister Ismene. “What is it?” asks Ismene, then she adds the purple verb. “You are obviously growing dark in mind (kalchainous’) over some piece of news.” This is a standard reading of the line. Hölderlin’s version: “Du scheinst ein rotes Wort zu färben,” would mean something like “You seem to colour a red word, to dye your words red.” The deadly literalism of the line is typical of him. His translating method was to take hold of every item of the original diction and wrench it across into German exactly as it stood in its syntax, word order and lexical sense. The result was versions of Sophokles that made Goethe and Schiller laugh aloud when they heard them. Learned reviewers itemized more than a thousand mistakes and called the translations disfigured, unreadable, the work of a madman. Indeed by 1806 Hölderlin was certified insane. His family committed him to a psychiatric clinic, from which after a year he was released as incurable. He spent the remaining thirty-seven years of his life in a tower overlooking the river Neckar, in varying states of indifference or ecstasy, walking up and down his room, playing the piano, writing on scraps of paper, receiving the odd visitor. He died still insane in 1843. It is a cliché to say Hölderlin’s Sophokles translations show him on the verge of breakdown and derive their luminous, gnarled, unpronounceable weirdness from his mental condition. Still I wonder what exactly is the relation of madness to translation? Where does translation happen in the mind? And if there is a silence that falls inside certain words, when, how, with what violence does that take place, and what difference does it make to who you are?

Anne Carson
Variations on the Right to Remain Silent


August 22, 2019

Some of my pictures are poem-like in the sense that they are very condensed, haiku-like. There are others that, if they were poetry, would be more like Ezra Pound. There is a lot of information in most of my pictures, but not the kind of information you see in documentary photography. There is emotional information in my photographs.

Sally Mann
Interview for ASX January 5th 2013

have their fortunes told

August 22, 2019

I could live there all alone, she thought, slowing the car to look down the winding garden path to the small blue front door with, perfectly, a white cat on the step. No one would ever find me there, either, behind all those roses, and just to make sure I would plant oleanders by the road. I will light a fire in the cool evenings and toast apples at my own hearth. I will raise white cats and sew white curtains for the windows and sometimes come out of my door to go to the store to buy cinnamon and tea and thread. People will come to me to have their fortunes told, and I will brew love potions for sad maidens; I will have a robin…

Shirley Jackson
The Haunting of Hill House


August 22, 2019

She was born to be the adored of poets

Virginia Woolf
The Waves

Pinpoints of light

August 22, 2019

From the balcony outside the window of his room, he could see over the bay to the hills beyond. A moon had risen and its reflection gleamed through the tangle of crane jibs along the quay where the steamers berthed. The searchlights of a Turkish cruiser anchored in the roadstead outside the inner port swung round like long white fingers, brushed the summits of the hills and were extinguished. Out in the harbour and on the slopes above the town pinpoints of light twinkled. A slight, warm breeze off the sea had begun to stir the leaves of a rubber tree in the garden below him. In another room of the hotel a woman laughed. Somewhere in the distance a gramophone was playing a tango. The turntable was revolving too quickly and the sound was shrill and congested.

Eric Ambler
The Mask of Dimitrios