Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Look Up with the Rapt and Stupid Look of Saints in Paintings

To stop myself thinking about it I bought an Arches 12 x 12 hot-press watercolor block which, if I'd thought about it instead of thinking I needed to buy it, is too big for the bed of the scanner I use so I can post the squares here and there and too big for the laminator I use so that the squares can be handled without fountain pen ink staining fingers, the below is the 12 x 12 cropped to 11 x 11, fine metaphors abound

I've stopped exactly halfway through Fosse's *Septology.* I forced myself to pick it up once, not twice, I sin for not reading it end to end like I once told myself I sinned if I didn't but promise to read after I finish, laugh, McCarthy's *The Passenger,* let me say this about that, I've ordered *Stella Maris* which I'll read after I finish the second half of Fosse's *Septology.* Fosse's Asle has a dog, McCarthy's Bobby has a cat, John Cale has a new song:

Many echoes between the two novels, many probably just me reaching, shared themes, standard novel info-striptease. *The Passenger* is often funny and on two occasions so far laugh out loud funny. I'm open to it and I don't know if I hope I'm wrong or not but lay heavy odds that not *once* will I laugh out loud reading *Septology,* which I will finish though now I like the guy whose move is short verb-less sentences versus this 824 page one sentence novel, another fucking one sentence novel, now, more often than not squeezed into a single paragraph sausage if you're lucky, a too common and now irritating gimmick, it's old, motherfuckers. Old, though below is a new Yo La Tengo song

Owned! I've been owned! I had no idea!
Mike Davis's Ten Immodest Commandments
Third World WarKEVORKO 3000
White people whitewashing MLK
Imperial dominance disguised as Democratic deterrence
NATO and the long war on the 3rd World
We must separate from the burning house
White people whitewashing MLK
Jon Fosse and the art of tedium
A syntax of cadaverous dignity
Maggie's weekly linksJOHN CALE!
Why I divorced the Orioles 25 years ago
Virology as ideologyFRESH HELL
Second to last paragraph: "(PJ) Harvey will release a new studio album—her first in seven years—in 2023" so wOOt!
{ feuilleton }'s weeklyLuddite library
New Sleaford Mods song is lol good


Howard Nemerov

The people in the elevator all
Face front, they all keep still, they all
Look up with the rapt and stupid look of saints
In paintings at the numbers that light up
By turn and turn to tell them where they are.
They are doing the dance, they are playing the game.

To get here they have gone by avenue
And street, by ordinate and abscissa, and now
By this new coordinate, up. They are three-
dimensional characters, taken from real life;
They have their fates, whether to rise or fall,
And when their numbers come up they get out.


  1. speaking of saints in paintings, one of my favorite paintings, which i first saw on a field trip to the national gallery of art when i was in elementary school in falls church, va, is


    the gaze of st george's horse - the only character in the painting who is looking directly at us - caught my attention - to me, it seems to say "you, the viewer, and i, the horse in the painting, know that this event never happened, despite the depiction of the impaled dragon's writhing, the saint's focus on his prey, and the rapt and stupid look of the maiden being rescued"

  2. Thanks to you I'm going to John Cale at the end of Feb.

    1. If I buy you the (preferably long-sleeve for me, ymmv) tshirt for you and buy my own and pay for shipping will you buy me a (preferably long-sleeve) tshirt and mail it to me please?

      With envy, J

    2. If said merchandise is available, it's yours.