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It is a whirlwind in here

The Ghost Of Kafka Walks

The Ghost of Kafka walks

(not stalks)


The streets

Of Prague.


 Prague,

(The place he would/could

Never leave
Until the last

Half year of his life)

He described as:
“The little Mother has claws.”

Which she did.

For him.


He managed

(In the last half year of his life)
To escape to Berlin

During one of

The
Worst times

Anyone could live

In Berlin


Until the end of the

Second World War.

But

That was years

Away.


But he escaped

With a young

Lover,

Which made things

So much

Better.


But his Ghost only

Walks
The streets of

Prague


Whereas

Kafka’s Ghost

Stalks

The rest of

The World.


~ D. E. BA  U.E.

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Margaret Atwood Travels Further Than Ever – Blessed Be!

the-testaments_margaret-atwood_3

I have noted some folk looking at this post from a couple of years ago. I had put it up because of the success of the television series, A Handmaid’s Tale.

Now, Ms. Atwood has produced a new novel, The Testaments, [which, by the way, has a brilliant front and back cover] with an international launch from London, England. I can humbly state that my part in her literary life remains the same.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

It was not my intent to piss off Margaret Atwood.

The opposite, in fact. I wanted her to know she was an inspiration.

She was giving a reading at the University of New Brunswick in my student days. I attended, but there was quite the gathering and she was whisked away at the end. However, I overheard there was a ‘gathering’ in her honour. Invitation only, of course. Academia and literati.

I crashed the party (that was the term used by the professor who clapped his sturdy hand upon my shoulder but – happily – did not thrust me into the night).

But Ms. Atwood was kept deep in many a learned conversation and I had no opportunity to converse. I did, however, overhear where she would be spending next afternoon – the historic University Observatory.

Next day I knocked upon the Observatory door.

It was not a cheerful Margaret Atwood who answered, and answered with alacrity.

She asked my name.

She asked my business.

And she asked how the hell I knew where she was. She had stolen the day to do some writing. Some ‘real’ writing, in this window-of-opportunity grudgingly offered on the book tour.

At least I was there to praise Atwood and not to bury her with some essay question.

Nor had I a manuscript to hand to her.

I might not have garnered a smile, but her curt thank you was reward enough.

For me, at least.

Featured post

Lemonbalm Shortbread

Shortbread of any kind . . .  Serve lemon balm shortbread with some fresh lemonbalm tea and you’ve got yourself a decadent little treat for a summertime afternoon.

Source: Lemonbalm Shortbread

A List Of A Day Full Of Countries

Every once in awhile I am taken aback (and sometimes amused) by the particular variety of the countries that have viewed my posts. No rhyme nor reason as far as I can tell. No relations to subject matter, or posting dates, or events in the world. For some reason, folk in these countries wanted to read my words and observations. Gotta say, it makes me feel kinda good.

UNITED STATES

CANADA

THAILAND

TAIWAN

BELGUIM

TUNISIA

ITALY

CAMBODIA

SPAIN

FINLAND

c

Jesus Walks At Easter

The Unicorn is mentioned eight times in the Holy Bible. The list is below.

When I have Druids, and their unicorns, go to Jerusalem in my novel A Lost Gospel, to make sure Jesus gets crucified, I feel I am on solid ground. And when one of my druids, Ogma,  has the following experience, I believe it is a symmetry of Biblical proportions.

Unicorns are mentioned in the following places of The Bible:

Numbers 23:22

God brought them out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn.

Numbers 24:8

Deuteronomy 33:17

Job 39:9-12

Psalm 22:21

Psalm 29:6

Psalm 92:10

Isaiah 34:7

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From A Lost Gospel

“Are you lost?”

“No.”

Ogma was taken by surprise, but he did not turn toward the speaker. He had no desire to start a conversation, he just wanted to be left to himself.

“Yet you are a traveller to these parts.”

“Yes.”

Ogma knew only too well the interest local people had for strangers in their midst. It was an interest which could easily turn into suspicion. He was alone, and he did not want to have trouble in this unknown land.

“I had business in Jerusalem.” Ogma shrugged. “The desire came upon me to feel earth under my feet, not paving stones.”

“And you find yourself here.”

“I turned from the main road at a whim.”

“What did you in Jerusalem?”

“I do not intrude thus in your life.”  Ogma kept a steady gaze across the field, though he could not keep irritation from his voice.

“Yet you do intrude – for here you are.”

“If I’m on your land, I apologise. I thought it was a common road. There is no barrier in place to warn me otherwise.”

Ogma wondered if it was time to leave the way he had come, or to stay and talk. Despite the words spoken, the other man’s voice displayed no anger, or annoyance.

“Do you find no peace in Jerusalem?”

“I’ve had a troubled time in your grand city.”

Ogma suddenly realised he had things he wanted to say, which he could not discuss with the other druids. He finally turned to the man, wondering if he should explain further.

“By the Gods of Death!” Ogma stood back in fear. “This is not possible.”

“There are no boundaries to what is possible.”

“I saw them hang you up.”

“You saw flesh. And blood.”

“Then what do I see now?”

“More than a man of sorrows.”

“Glarus was right.” Ogma began to move further away, but stopped himself. “I’m not to fear you, or the change you bring.”

“Truth deserves acceptance, not fear.”

“Do you know of my burden?”

The other man raised his arm and pointed. Ogma turned to follow the outstretched hand. He saw the two unicorns standing close together among the trees.

“Have they brought me here?”

“They have led you to a place you sought yourself.”

“You know of Glarus.” Ogma stopped abruptly, and his voice lowered. “The gods I understand believe in trade. Take me instead of her.”

“You care so much?”

“I know the worth of things.” Ogma stared directly at the other man. “It is better to have her alive, than me.”

“No man knows his own worth.” Yeshua touched the small man, then held him close. “My father’s love does not barter.” He released Ogma with a smile. “Return to Jerusalem. You travel with companions.”

“The beasts accompany me?”

“Thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.”

Spring Iz Sprung, The Grass Iz Riz

So . . .

It happened like this.

First, my brother

(The one on the Island),

Has a friend who

Saw a Heron.

(I suppose a ‘Great Blue”

But I don’t know).

And then his wife

(That’d be my sister-in-law)

Is clearing away the

Grass & twigs

From the crocus

To help them grow

(You know – get the sun).

And on the big Fir

(Right out my window)

I’ve had:

Five blue jays

(All at once – usually

I rarely see them in more

Than two together)

A crow

Chick-a-dee-dee-dees

(Chick-a-dee-dee- deeing to beat

The band)

Two mourning doves

Billing and cooing

(Boy, were they ever billing

Never saw the sight before)

And a robin red breast

Looking right at me

As if I might have

A handful of worms

(Which – sadly – I didn’t)

‘Cause I would have given that bird

All I had.

So, This Is A Test

To prove a Test,

Almost a testament

As it were

The Test is to be tested.

To find out if it

Is an adequate test.

A workable Test

A Test correctly

Responsive

To answers

To say nothing

About the questions.

Rearranging The Deck Chairs On The Titanic

So – yeh – sure

There was an iceberg

A BIG effin’ mother

And

We hit it

And it’s dark as Hell

And the lights are going out

And the water

Is cold enough to

Kill ya

But

It’s the Titanic, goddanmit

And these last couple of hours

Maybe less

Should be as comfortable

As possible.

There’s even music

And, sure

Folk are scrambling for the lifeboats

And

There ain’t enough of them

And it’s

Women and children first

(Even some from the lower decks)

But where does that leave the rest of us?

Even the crew.

Gotta do something

Gotta pass the time

Gotta be productive

Or take a header off the railing.

So

Deck chairs are nice

Easy to move around

Comfy to sit in

Watch the sights

Sing along with the music

Or hum

Brace your feet

When the deck starts to list too far

Look at the starrs

Wonder if

One of those lifeboats

Just might pick you up

Pluck you from that icy grave.

DE BA. UE

Pistachio Rhubarb Yogurt Cake

Try this recipe for Pistachio Rhubarb Yogurt Cake from PBS Food.

Source: Pistachio Rhubarb Yogurt Cake

How I Spent My First Year In The Pandemic

 

 

 
 
 
 

 

 

fs-pandemic-planIn my manuscript, There Was A Time, Oh Pilgrim, When The Stones Were Not So Smooth  I finished a chapter about the ‘elderly Dutchmen party with Alison Alexandra’ on Friday 13th last March. I took a trip and, on 19th March, began what is nearly a full year of Pandemic writing.The next chapter of the novel begins “In times of Pandemic, one of Alison Alexandra’s greatest worries is being bored.”

I started planning to write about the Pandemic the day after I heard that China was constructing hospitals solely devoted to COVID patients. I knew then the world was going to be in a lot of trouble. I have been writing about the Pandemic ever since.

 

This is how that chapter begins.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In times of Pandemic, one of Alison Alexandra’s greatest worries is being bored. And though she doesn’t want to test the theory, she believes she would rather be ill than bored.

“I’d step lightly there,” says R/Jane-the-Ghost.

“You would?”

“I would,” says R/Jane-the-Ghost. “And I know what I’m talking about. Yes – I do.”

Within the week of Wuhan City in China being shut down, and the building of emergency hospitals to house the sick, Alison Alexandra knew this would inevitably become the fate of the world. It might have intruded a bit more quickly than she has anticipated, but not by much.

Alison Alexandra of course thinks about the Chinese cures: “May you live in interesting times”. But she also knows that this is a phrase in English that has no Chinese equivalent. The closest curse in Chinese is “Better to be a dog in peacetime than a human in time of war”.

“I won’t argue with that,” says R/Jane-the-Ghost.

And she doesn’t.

So, it was at the beginning of the Chinese curse that Alison Alexandra sets her plan into motion. It is simple, though dependent on circumstance.

Alison Alexandra arranges to get those with whom she’d like to share the End Times – if End Times they prove to be – to join her at her house and wait out the famine with a feast or two. Or three.

“I don’t think the End Times are supposed to be good times,” says R/Jane-the-Ghost/

“Not to put too fine a point on it,” says Alison Alexandra. “But aren’t you supposed to know?”

“Point taken,” says R/Jane-the-Ghost.

[Image]  https://www.frontiersurvival.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/FS-Pandemic-Plan.jpg

There Are Crocuses On Leaman Street

 

 

 

 
blooming-white-crocus-close-up-growing-wildlife-spring-nature-background-greeting-card-calendar-design-181371094
There are crocuses on Leaman Street,
And the trees are full of birds,

Little birds,

Dozens of them singing

Their little bird hearts out.


White crocus,

Slender white points,

Not yet in bloom.

On the other side

Of a picket fence.

And there are three seagulls,

Soaring over the houses,

Screeching loud enough

To beat the band.

Earlier today,

There were four

Snow squalls

That obscured the harbour

And hid the grass.

But my afternoon walk

Was in clear sun,

Under cloudless sky,

And I didn’t really need

A hat

Or gloves,

Though I wore both.

So Spring is more

Than an idea,

Or

A date

On the calendar.

Spring is starting to awaken.


~DE BA UE
 

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