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True But Forbidden 14: Ad Astra Per Aspera

Astronomers Have Detected a Star Careening Through The Milky Way at 2.5 Million Mph   To be precise, it’s travelling at 1,130 kilometres per second (700 miles per second). That could take it from Earth to the Moon in 6 minutes. It’s one of the fastest stars we’ve ever seen. And boy, is it spectacular – zooming away from the expanding cloud of a recent supernova explosion, leaving a trail behind after it punched through the explosion’s outer shell of debris.

Woodpile Report    Something to ponder, a poem by Erasmus Darwin, 1731–1802. I know, when it comes to poetry you’d rather listen to a drunk read the safety stickers on a stepladder. Me too. But this one’s got a surprise in it.

To the Stars

Roll on, ye stars! exult in youthful prime,
Mark with bright curves the printless steps of time;
Near and more near your beamy cars approach,
And lessening orbs on lessening orbs encroach;
Flowers of the sky! ye, too, to age must yield.
Frail as your silken sisters of the field!
Star after star from heaven’s high arch shall rush,
Suns sink on suns, and systems systems crush,
Headlong, extinct, to one dark centre fall,
And death, and night, and chaos mingle all!
Till o’er the wreck, emerging from the storm,
Immortal nature lifts her changeful form,
Mounts from her funeral pyre on wings of flame,
And soars and shines, another and the same!

Never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never-in nothing, great or small, large or petty – never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy. To many countries it seemed that our account was closed, we were finished. All this tradition of ours, our songs, our School history, this part of the history of this country, were gone and finished and liquidated. Do not let us speak of darker days: let us speak rather of sterner days. These are not dark days; these are great days – the greatest days we have ever lived; and we must all thank God that we have been allowed, each of us according to our stations, to play a part in making them.  –– Churchill

MOTUS A.D.: The Mueller Report, What Does It Mean Anyone?:   In 2016, the Deep State controlled Department of Justice, in an effort to undermine the administration of — Anyone? Anyone? — Donald Trump, launched the — Anyone? Anyone? — The Russian collusion investigation, which, anyone? Indicted or cleared?  Cleared the President. Did it work? — Anyone?  — Anyone know the effect? It did not work, and the Deep State sank deeper into their corruption and judicial overreach. Today we have a similar debate over this. Anyone know what this is? Class? Anyone? Anyone? Anyone seen this before? Fake News. Anyone know what this is? It’s when news is presented in a way that slants facts or makes them up out of whole cloth. This is very controversial. Does anyone know what  President Trump called this in 2017? — Anyone? Something-h-u-n-t.  œWitch Hunt? [click to continue…]

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Never an “If,” always a “when.” The great 2010 internet tradition of Hitler in the Bunker continues…

TRUMP’S BEST DAY…
SHAME OF THE NATION: 533,074 articles have been published about Russia probe…
Networks Gave Whopping 2,284 Minutes…
50 Hollywood Stars Who Accused Trump of Treason, Collusion…
LIST: FALSE BOMBSHELLS…
Most embarrassing predictions…
Greenwald Rails Against Misinformation and Fear…
TAIBBI: Russiagate is this generation’s WMD…
GOOGLE obscures news…
Former Spy Chiefs Exposed…
DEMS: PLAN B…
New Day For White House…
Re-election weapon…
GOODWIN: HILLARY’S BIG LIE…
PAPER: Apologies to President Trump…
FLASHBACK: Lindsey Graham urged McCain to pass dossier to FBI…
[click to continue…]

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Something Wonderful: New York City in 1911

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Meanwhile, back at the Swamp

[The demands and immediate concerns of my life continue today with no let-up in sight. In the meantime the vile world dimensional on the Potomac continues with the release of the long-dreaded/welcomed clown show known as “The Mueller Report.” It’s early innings yet but so far the best long article on the Democrats Coprophagic Feeding Festival is by Matt Tabbi at  It’s official: Russiagate is this generation’s WMD. Here are some excerpts but I commend the whole to you.]

Nobody wants to hear this, but news that Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller is headed home without issuing new charges is a death-blow for the reputation of the American news media.

As has long been rumored, the former FBI chief’s independent probe will result in multiple indictments and convictions, but no “presidency-wrecking” conspiracy charges, or anything that would meet the layman’s definition of “collusion” with Russia.

With the caveat that even this news might somehow turn out to be botched, the key detail in the many stories about the end of the Mueller investigation was best expressed by the New York Times:

A senior Justice Department official said that Mr. Mueller would not recommend new indictments.

The Times tried to soften the emotional blow for the millions of Americans trained in these years to place hopes for the overturn of the Trump presidency in Mueller. Nobody even pretended it was supposed to be a fact-finding mission, instead of an act of faith.

The Special Prosecutor literally became a religious figure during the last few years, with votive candles sold in his image and Saturday Night Live cast members singing “All I Want for Christmas is You” to him featuring the rhymey line: “Mueller please come through, because the only option is a coup.”

The Times story today tried to preserve Santa Mueller’s reputation, noting Trump’s Attorney General William Barr’s reaction was an “endorsement” of the fineness of Mueller’s work:

In an apparent endorsement of an investigation that Mr. Trump has relentlessly attacked as a “witch hunt,” Mr. Barr said Justice Department officials never had to intervene to keep Mr. Mueller from taking an inappropriate or unwarranted step.

Mueller, in other words, never stepped out of the bounds of his job description. But could the same be said for the news media?

For those anxious to keep the dream alive, the Times published its usual graphic of Trump-Russia “contacts,” inviting readers to keep making connections. But in a separate piece by Peter Baker, the paper noted the Mueller news had dire consequences for the press:

It will be a reckoning for President Trump, to be sure, but also for Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel, for Congress, for Democrats, for Republicans, for the news media and, yes, for the system as a whole…

This is a damning page one admission by the Times. Despite the connect-the-dots graphic in its other story, and despite the astonishing, emotion-laden editorial the paper also ran suggesting “We don’t need to read the Mueller report” because we know Trump is guilty, Baker at least began the work of preparing Times readers for a hard question: “Have journalists connected too many dots that do not really add up?” [click to continue…]

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Some Say That Snow

Some say that snow is sleep. I say
That snow is but the rest
Of clouds upon earth’s surface laid
To soothe the forest’s breast,
To calm the souls that linger there
Beneath an age of leaf
That hides within its brindle flesh
Whole galaxies of seed.

Some say that snow is chill. I say
That snow is but a shawl
Draped over stones of silence,
That such silence shelter all,
And in their silence hear within
The brook beneath the glass,
That when the sun shall set it free
All dreams to sea shall pass.

Some say that snow is death. I say
That snow is but a prayer
Said when the soul in winter’s glade
Calls the body from its lair,
To stand within the test of light,
Becoming less than air,
And leave behind what came before
In the shadows dawn prepares.

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The Snow Tree

After the fires that burned everything and the rains that never seemed to end there was, at last, a day when the sun shone and the air was warm and scented not with ash but with the promise of Spring. He pointed to the sunshine falling through her front window onto the worn rug in a wind-shimmered pool of light. “Do you want to take a ride out into the Spring?”

“Oh, of course, let’s see what’s going on around here. I’d love to get outside for a bit.”

So he brought out the wheelchair and, after some maneuvering, got her seated and wrapped up with scarves and blankets so that not a wisp of cold could find its way to her. Then he opened the door and out they rolled for the first time in weeks.

Outside it was a fine afternoon; a spring afternoon even though most of the trees sported bare branches just beginning to bud. The bright red camellias were everywhere though and he plucked a few of these and set them on the blanket covering her lap. Outside it was pretty much all blacktopped parking lot but she’d never had been one to look down. She looked up instead at the clouds she always liked to track in the skies vaulting Chico from the Ridge above to the farmountains of the coast range. There were enough there for her to see and identify as they rolled along.

Then they turned the corner towards the apartment’s swimming pool and picnic spot. There they stopped. In front of them was a large tree looming over all the other trees except the dawn redwoods. It was covered all across its crown in massive clumps of white, white blossoms; blossoms so white they could have been a pure snowcap on a tallmountain in January. Even though her eyes were failing her she turned her face up to those suspended drifts of a white and clear spring and said, “Oh my, oh my, isn’t that the most beautiful thing we’ve seen yet?”

They rolled on and got to the swimming pool and the small lawns and tables around it. She had him take her and place her in a way that she could feel the sun on her face and hands but so that it did not dazzle her.

They sat there for a bit. Not talking very much at all, just enjoying the warmth of the spring sun together. Then for a bit, he read her from How Green Was My Valley, the book she had been trying to read on the tablet he’d taught her to use; the tablet that made the print large enough for her eyes to follow. Then they talked a bit more as the sun fell lower in the sky. It became colder so they started to make their way back to her small apartment where she’d lived for over 40 years.

They came back to the tree of the white blossoms. A wind was coming up and the blossoms were being blown from the branches.

She had him stop under the tree for a time and she let the white blossoms from the tree drift down and rest on the ground, and on her lap, and in her hair, all twirling and glimmering in the sunlight like some gentle scented snowflakes.

“So pretty,” she said. “See how white they are.”

“We can come back tomorrow,” he said. “We could have a picnic in the sun by the pool.”

“So pretty,” she said again looking at a few blossoms that had fallen into her hands. “Okay, I’m ready to go home now.”

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If It Be Your Will

If it be your will
That I speak no more
And my voice be still
As it was before
I will speak no more
I shall abide until
I am spoken for
If it be your will

If it be your will
That a voice be true
From this broken hill
I will sing to you
From this broken hill
All your praises they shall ring
If it be your will
To let me sing
From this broken hill
All your praises they shall ring
If it be your will
To let me sing

If it be your will
If there is a choice
Let the rivers fill
Let the hills rejoice
Let your mercy spill
On all these burning hearts in hell
If it be your will
To make us well

And draw us near
And bind us tight
All your children here
In their rags of light
In our rags of light
All dressed to kill
And end this night
If it be your will

If it be your will

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Site Notes: Intermittency Happens

Due to family issues, writing and new items on this page may become intermittent for a time. But thank you all for your comments and your reading of what little I have to say… and especially your overwhelming generosity.**

(**For those who may wonder, I am currently working my way through more than 700 thank yous and that will take a while.)

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True But Forbidden 13

From the Z Man’s Weekley Podcast. If you’re not listening, maybe you should: Maybe it is me, but our side of the great divide seems a bit down the last few weeks, with all the bad news coming from various quarters. President Fink backtracking on his promises, the rising brown tide pouring over the border, the book banning and so forth is taking a toll on morale. This is just part of the game probably. In the midst of all great societal upheavals, the participants have had their dark moments. I find myself watching videos of otters on YouTube more often than normal, just to keep the spirits up. Underdogs | The Z Blog

A Different Kind of Theory of Everything |  

In 1964, during a lecture at Cornell University, the physicist Richard Feynman articulated a profound mystery about the physical world. He told his listeners to imagine two objects, each gravitationally attracted to the other. How, he asked, should we predict their movements? Feynman identified three approaches, each invoking a different belief about the world. The first approach used Newton’s law of gravity, according to which the objects exert a pull on each other. The second imagined a gravitational field extending through space, which the objects distort. The third applied the principle of least action, which holds that each object moves by following the path that takes the least energy in the least time. All three approaches produced the same, correct prediction. They were three equally useful descriptions of how gravity works.

“One of the amazing characteristics of nature is this variety of interpretational schemes,” Feynman said. What’s more, this multifariousness applies only to the true laws of nature—it doesn’t work if the laws are misstated. “If you modify the laws much, you find you can only write them in fewer ways,” Feynman said. “I always found that mysterious, and I do not know the reason why it is that the correct laws of physics are expressible in such a tremendous variety of ways. They seem to be able to get through several wickets at the same time.”

The hipster effect: Why anti-conformists always end up looking the same  

Making cheese from the black mold on your wall     I’d love to take the project further and travel with it to make further renditions that are area specific to where it’s exhibited, so that each place and the specificities to that local are examined. I’m also getting in touch with food labs to get an analysis of the cheese sample and its toxins.

Wat Phra Dhammakaya temple, near Bangkok. 

A new anti-Trump publication is the last thing conservative media needs

“Generic white #NeverTrump conservative” is already the most overrepresented type in American media. There are approximately 200 of these people in the United States, and every single one of them has a column in a major newspaper and a book about why Drumpf is the logical and polar opposite of certain ideals supposedly embodied in whatever Tocqueville quotes their research assistants have just pulled up for them. They are the same people who have spent the last two decades insisting that all the things that actually keep people voting for the GOP against their own economic interests — opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage — are yucky. They are often referred to as “neocons,” but this appellation is insulting to the legacy of Irving Kristol and Christopher Lasch. A better one is “metro-conservatives,” i.e., think-tank grifters.

The pestilence grows. Groomers now feel secure enough to expand into enforcement. This scarcely to be believed photo is workplace and living room safe, which is a sad comment in itself. The old joke was, “how long before they make it mandatory?” Methinks we’re getting close.  Woodpile Report

 The GOP’s Next Hill Not to Die On? : 

Senator Harris seems to be doing it for canny positioning reasons: She is one of the shrewder campaigners so far, but MSNBC ran a wacky segment a few weeks back in which various black activists pointed out that she is not “African-American”. Ms Harris is half-Indian, half-Jamaican – ie, like Barack Obama, she’s a child of British subjects. And one way to deflect from the fact that black Democrat presidential candidates seem to be disproportionately drawn from outside the African-American experience is to sign on to reparations big-time.

Isn’t this beginning to feel the way it usually goes? No doubt somewhere or other the Mitch McConnell/John Boehner types are assuring everyone: Not to worry, it’ll never happen… But that’s what they said about Obamacare and gay marriage and all the rest. Democrat presidential candidates, “moderate” conservatives… Sooner than you think, Republicans will be telling each other: Let it go, this isn’t the hill to die on…

It never is, is it?

[click to continue…]

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Take me back, take me way, way, way back
On Hyndford Street
Where you could feel the silence at half past eleven
On long summer nights
As the wireless played Radio Luxembourg
And the voices whispered across Beechie River
In the quietness as we sank into restful slumber in the silence
And carried on dreaming, in God

And walks up Cherry Valley from North Road Bridge, railway line
On sunny summer afternoons
Picking apples from the side of the tracks
That spilled over from the gardens of the houses on Cyprus Avenue
Watching the moth catcher working the floodlights in the evenings
And meeting down by the pylons

Playing round Mrs. Kelly’s lamp
Going out to Holywood on the bus
And walking from the end of the lines to the seaside
Stopping at Fusco’s for ice cream
In the days before rock ‘n’ roll

Hyndford Street, Abetta Parade
Orangefield, St. Donard’s Church
Sunday six-bells, and in between the silence there was conversation
And laughter, and music and singing, and shivers up the back of the neck

And tuning in to Luxembourg late at night
And jazz and blues records during the day
Also Debussy on the third program
Early mornings when contemplation was best

Going up the Castlereagh hills
And the cregagh glens in summer and coming back
To Hyndford Street, feeling wondrous and lit up inside
With a sense of everlasting life

And reading Mr. Jelly Roll and Big Bill Broonzy
And “Really The Blues” by “Mezz” Mezzrow
And “Dharma Bums” by Jack Kerouac
Over and over again

And voices echoing late at night over Beechie River
And it’s always being now, and it’s always being now
It’s always now

Can you feel the silence?
On Hyndford Street where you could feel the silence
At half past eleven on long summer nights
As the wireless played Radio Luxembourg
And the voices whispered across Beechie River
And in the quietness we sank into restful slumber in silence
And carried on dreaming in God.

Carried on dreaming in God up on Cypress Avenue:

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The Drawer Horror

Some years ago I was visiting an old friend in Florida. This pal (A large man who is actually “a sensitive little forest flower.”) loves boats and boating and maintained two, count ‘em, two homes in Florida set up for boating.

The first home was his main base in Ft. Lauderdale. It was a three bedroom two bath operation with a swimming pool, an office, and a long boat dock where he kept “the big boat.”

The second home was a smaller house set up on stilts down in the depths of the Florida Keys twenty miles above Key West with two bedrooms, one bath, and a boat dock on a canal where he kept “the little boat.”

Since he used the Keys only here and there throughout the year he decided at some point to rent it out. He did rent it out for a year to a well-vetted man. When I visited him that lease was up and he and I went to the Keys house to check it out. A day or so before we arrived my pal had a house cleaner go in and change all the bedding and spiff up the rest of the house.

When we got there I went into the guest bedroom to unpack my things into the chest of drawers. As I opened the bottom drawer I found the renter or one of his guests had left some underwear and t-shirts in the bottom drawer. Under them, the same person has left behind a large, realistic, and battery-powered dildo in a plastic bag with some suspicious smears on the inside. Moving the switch around inside the bag without touching the dildo I determined that the batteries were, to say the least, fresh. Like Elvis’s King Creole it was “jumpin’ like a catfish on a pole.”

Even though he is a manly man my pal is also, as noted above, a very sensitive little forest flower. The least hint of some sort of object that had spent party time somewhere inside a person’s body fills him with shivering, visceral loathing. My pal took one look at my “discovery” and walked shivering into the kitchen. He returned with his hands in dishwashing rubber gloves and a pair of kitchen tongs.

He gingerly picked up the bag containing the dildo with the tongs and then, holding it as far away from himself as possible, walked down the stairs to the carport and dropped the offensive package into the garbage can. He then dropped the tongs into the garbage can. He then removed his rubber gloves, dropped them in the can, and then – still shivering with loathing and muttering to himself — went back upstairs and took a long hot shower followed by an emergency cocktail.

Because I was an old friend who understood and deeply respected his “issues,” I promptly snuck down to the garbage cans, retrieved the dildo in the bag, switched it to off, and hid it in my luggage.

Several days later, with the dildo incident forgotten (except for my pal’s repeated declaration he would NEVER EVER rent out the Keys house again), we returned to Fort Lauderdale. After arriving my pal announced he was going to run to the store to pick up some groceries. I nodded and waved from my perch on the couch in the living room and watched him drive off down the street.

Then I got up and took the bagged dildo out of my luggage and went into his office. I slid open the drawer on the right-hand side of his desk and emptied its contents, hiding them in the next drawer down. I then placed the bagged dildo into the empty drawer and turned it on. Closing the drawer I was pleased to note a faint but perceptible hummmmm and vibration from the desk.

Then I went back out to the couch, picked up a magazine and waited.

Soon my pal returned with a bag of groceries. Nodded to me as he came in.

“Hey, man, there was a phone call on your office line. Probably left a message.”

“Oh, okay, thanks.” Walks into the office.

My mind says,

“Wait for it….

“Wait for it…”

Suddenly a most unmanly scream comes wafting out of the office into the living room. My pal appears, trembling, pale, and shocked.

“Out….. get it out….. now….. please… I’m begging you.”

Weeping from laughter, I stagger into the office and glance down into the open drawer where I can see the powered up dildo shaking and slowly moving in a circle on the bottom of the drawer. I pick up the bag by the corner and display it to him. He is standing by the back door pointing to the garbage can. I go out and ceremoniously drop it in…. vibrating all the way down.

He’s back in the kitchen. Boiling water. It will take three quarts of water and two gloved scrubbings with Brillo soap pads until he’s satisfied that the drawer in his desk is finally purged of Dildo Cooties.

In a couple of days, I leave.

The next year I’m back. In his office one day I absently pull open the right-hand top drawer of his desk. There’s a liner on the bottom and nothing else in the drawer.

Like I said, for a big man my pal is a very sensitive little forest flower.

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Boomer Ballads: Visions Of Johanna

Lingering, strange, allusive and evocative. Lilting, sibilant, elusive, and provocative. These visions always take me  Downtown, way downtown; take me back to the loft above the shuttered Duane Street cigar factory where I lived in New York in the 70s. That loft where the wind of winter blew cold and slammed the loosened steel shutter of the cigar rolling factory deep down below that we’d rise above in the freight elevator that had no door; the elevator that beheaded the dog as it rode up looking down. You’d come in out of the cold using the keys tossed down inside a rolled up sweat sock and take the broad stairs two at a time past the coughing heat pipes. Across the way, in the opposite loft, the painter with no money for lights painted all night with candles like some Soho Van Gogh out to daub the starry, starry New York night onto his canvas. My painter-lover was a Jewish American Princess fresh in from Beverly Hills where she’d lived in Gary Cooper’s old mansion with her mother and the mafia’s manager of a Las Vegas hotel. In the winterset or the summer swelter, we’d amble out to the around-the-corner after-hours artists’ bar in the years before it became fashionable to live in lofts; the years when a laundromat was a five buck cab ride away in the East Village. We’d eat cheap Chinese take-out, drink wine, roll joints and listen to the foghorn soft FM radio station rolling in the deep and falling asleep in tousled sheets at first light when the night watchmen would clock out and make their way to Spanish Harlem on the uptown train. Somewhere to the south of the loft they were finishing the World Trade Center and this song from Blonde on Blonde was on the cheap Sears stereo in heavy rotation. Other than that, “how can I explain? It’s so hard to get on, and these visions of Johanna kept me up past the dawn.” It was my favorite year and I still weep when I think of it.

Ain’t it just like the night to play tricks when you’re tryin’ to be so quiet?
We sit here stranded, though we’re all doin’ our best to deny it
And Louise holds a handful of rain, temptin’ you to defy it

Lights flicker from the opposite loft
In this room the heat pipes just cough
The country music station plays soft
But there’s nothing, really nothing to turn off

Just Louise and her lover so entwined
And these visions of Johanna that conquer my mind

In the empty lot where the ladies play blindman’s bluff with the key chain
And the all-night girls they whisper of escapades out on the “D” train
We can hear the night watchman click his flashlight
Ask himself if it’s him or them that’s really insane [click to continue…]

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That red assed quesadilla maker. My wife likes quesadillas. Someone gave her the red a few years ago, we used it once. You lay a tortilla in it, then scoop your stuff into it, lay another tortilla on top, then scrunch the whole thing down as flat as possible when you close and latch the lid.

The cooking surfaces are divided into about 6 compartments, but they are covered up when you put the first tort in it. So you just ladle your stuff in it and pay it no never mind. When you squeeze the lid shut, which takes considerable force, shit squirts out all the way around. Over the edge and down the sides and on the counter. But wait, there’s more. You clean up one side and then the other and when you look back at the first side HOT shit has squirted out and is puddling on the counter. Now you’re hot. You clean that stuff up and in the middle you think, hmmm…if this side squirted what about the other, so you look and…. Squirt. All. Over. That. Fucking. Counter. too. WTF is going on here?!?!?

So you throw the cleaning cloth down and go sit down. Glaring at that quesadilla maker from across the room. Time to go lift the lid and check it out. That latch is tight. That stuff inside is now under heat pressure and has expanded even more. Using both hands, and your knees against the lower cabinet door, you pop it loose and 3000 degrees of Mexi-heat washes the UV film off your glasses instantly and replaces it with steam. “MY EYES!” “I CAN’T SEE!!!” You hold onto the counter with one hand and take your destroyed glasses off with the other, relieved that you are not blind. Can’t see worth a fuck, but not blind. Pshwew That was close.

Clean the glasses up and reinstall and head for the q-maker. There it is, all toasty golden brown with steam emanating up from it. You grab a spatula to lift it out of there but find out quickly you need an industrial shovel. Yep. That bitch welded itself down into them 6 troughs and the edge, all the way around, is one-sixteenth of an inch thick and the consistency of cast iron. Looking close, you can’t tell where the black ‘maker stops and the q begins, it looks like all one piece. WTF???

So you grab a steak knife and try to find the line of demarcation between the m and the q. It gives way, so you push the knife in some more. Then you trace the steak all the way around the perimeter getting 3rd-degree burns on the back of your knuckles as you pass by that raised lid. OMG, where the burn spray iz???

Finally, you pop that q outta there and it clanks onto the plate. Clanks. It is hard. Soft in some internal spots, but hard on the edges. To break it into bite-size pieces is going to require a wood chisel and mallet, or maybe the radial arm saw. When you get the thing divided and plated you just stare at it. Spoon some salsa on it, maybe some sour cream.

Then you bite into it. 2 incisors snap off instantly. The minced ghost peppers you put inside kills your whole mouth inside and out. The heat from your exhale as you scream in pain melts your plastic lenses. “MY EYES! I CAN’T SEE!!!” The wife can’t help cause she took a bite and is writhing on the floor from cardiac arrest. She’s allergic to them ghost peppers. OMG, OMG!!!!

Anyway, the QM was a kitchen appliance someone gave us and we gave it to the landfill. Just passing it on.

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AD Illustrated: Friday Funnies and Foibles

And yes I know that a terrible thing happened on the far side of the world that somehow was caused by President Trump merely breathing, but not everyone can get spun up over it. Not everyone at all. Once they spin you up it’s very hard to spin yourself down.

And so… now for something completely different… Government Film No. 42: How Not to Be Seen
[picture of forest]
Announcer: In this picture, there are 47 people; none of them can be seen. In this film, we hope to show you the value
of not being seen. Here is Mr. Bagthorpe of London, SE14. He cannot be seen. Now, I’m gonna ask him to stand up. Mr. Bagthorpe, will you stand up please?
[Bagthorpe stands up, gets shot, and dies]
Announcer: This demonstrates the value of not being seen.

The Dead Parrot

Customer: Hello I wish to register a complaint. Hello Miss?
Shop Assistant: What do you mean Miss?
Customer: Oh, I’m sorry I have a cold. I wish to make a complaint.
Shop Assistant: Sorry, we’re closing for lunch.
Customer: Never mind that my lad, I wish to complain about this parrot what I purchased not half an hour ago from this very boutique.
Shop Assistant: Oh yes the Norwegian Blue – what’s wrong with it?
Customer: I’ll tell you what’s wrong with it, it’s dead, that’s what’s wrong with it.
Shop Assistant: No, no it’s resting, look.
Customer: Look my lad, I know a dead parrot when I see one and I’m looking at one right now.
Shop Assistant: No, no it’s not dead it’s resting…
Customer: Resting?!
Shop Assistant: Yeah, remarkable bird the Norwegian Blue, beautiful plumage innit?
Customer: The plumage don’t enter into it, it’s stone dead.
Shop Assistant: No no it’s resting.
Customer: Alright then, if it’s resting I’ll wake it up. “Halloo Polly! I’ve got a nice cuttlefish for you when you wake up Polly parrot!
Shop Assistant: (Knocks the cage) There it moved!
Customer: No it didn’t! That was you pushing the cage!
Shop Assistant: I did not!
Customer: Yes you did! Halloo Polly! Pooolly! (bangs it on counter) Polly Parrot! Wake up! (bangs it on counter) Polly! (throws it on the floor) Now that’s what I call a dead parrot.
Shop Assistant: No no it’s stunned.
Customer: Look my lad I’ve had just about enough of this, that parrot is definitely deceased, and when I bought it not half an hour ago you assured me that its lack of movement was due to it being tired and shagged out after a long squawk.
Shop Assistant: It’s probably pining for the fjords.
Customer: Pining for the fjords, what kind of talk is that? Look why did it fall flat on its back the moment I got it home?
Shop Assistant: The Norwegian Blue prefers kipping on its back, it’s a beautiful bird, lovely plumage.
Customer: Look, I took the liberty of examining that parrot, and I discovered that the only reason that it had been sitting on its perch in the first place was that it had been nailed there.
Shop Assistant: Well of course it was nailed there otherwise it would of muscled up to those bars and “voom”!
Customer: Look matey, this parrot wouldn’t “voom” if I put 4,000 volts through it, its bleedin’ demised.
Shop Assistant: It’s not, it’s pining.
Customer: It’s not pining it’s passed on! This parrot is no more! It has ceased to be! It’s expired and gone to meet its maker! This, is a late parrot! It’s a stiff! Bereft of life, it rests in peace! If you hadn’t nailed it to the perch it would be pushin’ up the daisies! It’s rung down the curtain and joined the choir invisible! “THIS IS AN EX PARROT!”
Shop Assistant: Well, better replace it then (walks into store cupboard)
Customer: If you wanna get anything done in this country you gotta complain ’till you’re blue in the mouth.
Shop Assistant: Sorry guv, we’re right out of parrots.
Customer: I see, I see, I get the picture.
Shop Assistant: I’ve got a slug.
Customer: Does it talk?
Shop Assistant: Not really, no.
Customer: Then it’s scarcely a replacement then.
Shop Assistant: Look mate, I didn’t wanna work in a pet shop. I wanted to be a lumberjack…

[click to continue…]

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And fear not lest Existence closing your
Account and mine, should know the like no more;
The Eternal Saki from that Bowl has poured
Millions of Bubbles like us, and will pour.

The Rubaiyat Of Omar Khayyam Poem by Omar Khayyam

Meanwhile, in Brazil, termite life goes on much as it has for nearly all of recorded history:

Scientists Find 3,820-Year-Old Termite Mounds in Brazil   The vast array of termite mounds covers an estimated 230,000 km2 (roughly the size of Great Britain) of seasonally dry tropical forest in a relatively undisturbed region of northeastern Brazil.

It includes approximately 200 million cone-shaped soil mounds that are 2.5 m tall and approximately 9 m in diameter. These mounds are not nests, but rather they are generated by the excavation of vast inter-connecting tunnel networks.

“These mounds were formed by a single termite species — known as Syntermes dirus — that excavated a massive network of tunnels to allow them to access dead leaves to eat safely and directly from the forest floor,” said study lead author Professor Stephen Martin, a researcher at the University of Salford, UK.

“The amount of soil excavated is over 10 km3, equivalent to 4,000 great pyramids of Giza.”

“This is apparently the world’s most extensive bioengineering effort by a single insect species,” added co-author Dr. Roy Funch, from the Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana, Brazil.

“Perhaps most exciting of all — the mounds are extremely old — up to 4,000 years, similar to the ages of the pyramids.”

A vast 4,000-year-old spatial pattern of termite mounds:  

Here, we describe a vast array of soil mounds constructed by termites (Syntermes dirus) that has persisted for up to 4000 years and covers an estimated 230,000 km2 of seasonally dry tropical forest in a relatively undisturbed and climatically stable region of Northeast Brazil. The mounds are not nests, but rather they are generated by the excavation of vast inter-connecting tunnel networks, resulting in approximately 10 km3 of soil being deposited in 200 million conical mounds that are 2.5 m tall and approximately 9 m in diameter. S. dirus termites are still present in the soil surrounding the mounds and we found that intra-specific aggression occurred at a scale much larger than an individual mound.

Elsewhere in Central and South America men’s civilizations seem to last somewhat less than those of the termites before melting back into the landscape.

Guatemala’s Maya Society Featured Huge ‘Megalopolis,’ LiDAR Data Show   “Most people had been comfortable with population estimates of around 5 million,” said Estrada-Belli, who directs a multi-disciplinary archaeological project at Holmul, Guatemala. “With this new data it’s no longer unreasonable to think that there were 10 to 15 million people there—including many living in low-lying, swampy areas that many of us had thought uninhabitable.”

Virtually all the Mayan cities were connected by causeways wide enough to suggest that they were heavily trafficked and used for trade and other forms of regional interaction. These highways were elevated to allow easy passage even during rainy seasons. In a part of the world where there is usually too much or too little precipitation, the flow of water was meticulously planned and controlled via canals, dikes, and reservoirs.

Among the most surprising findings was the ubiquity of defensive walls, ramparts, terraces, and fortresses. “Warfare wasn’t only happening toward the end of the civilization,” said Garrison. “It was large-scale and systematic, and it endured over many years.”

The results suggest that Central America supported an advanced civilization that was, at its peak some 1,200 years ago, more comparable to sophisticated cultures such as ancient Greece or China than to the scattered and sparsely populated city states that ground-based research had long suggested.

In addition to hundreds of previously unknown structures, the LiDAR images show raised highways connecting urban centers and quarries. Complex irrigation and terracing systems supported intensive agriculture capable of feeding masses of workers who dramatically reshaped the landscape.

The ancient Maya never used the wheel or beasts of burden, yet “this was a civilization that was literally moving mountains,” said Marcello Canuto, a Tulane University archaeologist and National Geographic Explorer who participated in the project.

XXV.

  • Alike for those who for To-day prepare,
    And those that after some To-morrow stare,
    A Muezzin from the Tower of Darkness cries
    “Fools! your Reward is neither Here nor There”.

XXVI.

  • Why, all the Saints and Sages who discuss’d
    Of the Two Worlds so wisely — they are thrust
    Like foolish Prophets forth; their Words to Scorn
    Are scatter’d, and their Mouths are stopt with Dust.

XXVII.

  • Myself when young did eagerly frequent
    Doctor and Saint, and heard great argument
    About it and about: but evermore
    Came out by the same door where in I went.

XXVIII.

  • With them the seed of Wisdom did I sow,
    And with mine own hand wrought to make it grow;
    And this was all the Harvest that I reap’d —
    “I came like Water, and like Wind I go”.
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Boomer Anthems: American Pie

Say goodbye to the pie. Some may think this is one of those songs that should be stored in a vault and left unplayed for 100 years.  They’re not wrong, only misunderstood.

A long, long time ago…
I can still remember
How that music used to make me smile
And I knew if I had my chance
That I could make those people dance
And, maybe, they’d be happy for a while
But February made me shiver
With every paper I’d deliver
Bad news on the doorstep;
I couldn’t take one more step
I can’t remember if I cried
When I read about his widowed bride
But something touched me deep inside
The day the music died

[Chorus]
So bye-bye, Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee but the levee was dry
And them good old boys were drinking whiskey ‘n rye
Singing, “This’ll be the day that I die
“This’ll be the day that I die.” [click to continue…]

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True but Forbidden: @WokeCapital Edition

This from American Apparel. It displays diversity in its NUDES collection. Diversity apparently just means brown (and fat).

A COUPLE OF DAYS AGO I posted a brief meditation on the tsunami of propaganda that now oozes out of all American media in newspapers, magazines, movies, books, television and every other means of getting masses of people to take the perverse and bizarre and repulsive as “the new normal.” A much more extensive examination of these propaganda tactics is found in the recent interview with the man behind the Twitter account   @WokeCapital.  In that TwitStream you can find continuing examples of how the dementia of the left has seeped into all aspects of trying to influence and alter the minds and morality of normal Americans. I am excerpting a good deal but by no means all of this lengthy interview at     On Woke Capital | PARALLAX OPTICS.   I commend the whole to you. Meanwhile, here are a few choice cuts of the  @WokeCapital    interview. 

But first… Here’s…………. FATIMA!  (And “The candy bar ALL Americans love.” in case you midded the point of this pound of brain-fogging pap.)


********************************

Credit Suisse giving Woman of the Year to some married hetero man is arresting and gives people the “whoa, what a wacky, one-off story” sort of feel. But showing how all companies constantly signal diversity and inclusion, future is female, intersectional garbage… this is the real power of Woke Capital. The comparatively subtle “we embrace diversity and inclusion” crap is actually more dangerous than the outrage generating calculated PR “gaffe”. It’s a matter of boiling the frog vs sautéing it, though both ultimately move the Overton window left. And this is the point I try to get across. In fact, when I first started, I tried to find woke tweets from every company on the Dow and S&P 500 I could think of. Name a company, I’ll show you Cathedral propaganda. To date, I know only ONE publicly traded company where I couldn’t find any woke signaling whatsoever

Leftist academics groom everybody from pre-school through high school, and they’re working on adding at least four more years of mandatory brainwashing by expanding college level education. On top of the standard issue indoctrination, leftists expend extra effort on the media, the managerial elite, academics, and the scientific community. Then they have a sick symbiotic relationship with one another where they all mutually signal boost and confer legitimacy upon one another.

You see this with the media/tech giants/corporations all leaning on various leftists scams and Political Action Committees (PACs) for Woke Cred. Some examples of these scams – invariably given names Orwellian enough to make ol’ George blush – include the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), and Human Rights Campaign (HRC). The ADL is devoted to finding creative ways to cry “anti-semitism!” to any opposition to leftism. The SPLC is Morris Dees’ money making scam that raises funds from anti-white hatred, making it what Steve Sailer calls “America’s richest hate group”. You might be forgiven for thinking that the HRC gives a shit about human rights (whatever that even means), but it is actually a homosexual group that “focuses on protecting and expanding rights for LGBT individuals, most notably advocating for marriage equality, anti-discrimination and hate crimes legislation, and HIV/AIDS advocacy.” Companies go ahead thinking maybe if we get the gold star of approval from the HRC, we’ll be resistant to lawsuits from gay employees. If we co-sponsor Girls Who Code events or give them money, nobody in the media will notice that all our engineers are autistic white dudes. We’ve got the stamp of approval from The Gays/The Blacks/The Wahmmens, etc, etc. so don’t attack us, we’re down with the program, we’ll comply, we’ll play ball *turns over supine*. [click to continue…]

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Never trust a World Wide Web over 30.

Yes, The Web seems like it has been around forever and for all those under 30, it has been. It has not, dare I say, turned out as those ancient libertarians envisaged, but what has? Here’s an excerpt from     The original proposal of the WWW, HTMLized

Information Management: A Proposal
Tim Berners-Lee, CERN
March 1989, May 1990
This proposal concerns the management of general information about accelerators and experiments at CERN. It discusses the problems of loss of information about complex evolving systems and derives a solution based on a distributed hypertext system.

CERN is a wonderful organisation. It involves several thousand people, many of them very creative, all working toward common goals. Although they are nominally organised into a hierarchical management structure,this does not constrain the way people will communicate, and share information, equipment and software across groups.

The actual observed working structure of the organisation is a multiply connected “web” whose interconnections evolve with time. In this environment, a new person arriving, or someone taking on a new task, is normally given a few hints as to who would be useful people to talk to. Information about what facilities exist and how to find out about them travels in the corridor gossip and occasional newsletters, and the details about what is required to be done spread in a similar way. All things considered, the result is remarkably successful, despite occasional misunderstandings and duplicated effort.

A problem, however, is the high turnover of people. When two years is a typical length of stay, information is constantly being lost. The introduction of the new people demands a fair amount of their time and that of others before they have any idea of what goes on. The technical details of past projects are sometimes lost forever, or only recovered after a detective investigation in an emergency. Often, the information has been recorded, it just cannot be found.

If a CERN experiment were a static once-only development, all the information could be written in a big book. As it is, CERN is constantly changing as new ideas are produced, as new technology becomes available, and in order to get around unforeseen technical problems. When a change is necessary, it normally affects only a small part of the organisation. A local reason arises for changing a part of the experiment or detector. At this point, one has to dig around to find out what other parts and people will be affected. Keeping a book up to date becomes impractical, and the structure of the book needs to be constantly revised.

The sort of information we are discussing answers, for example, questions like

Where is this module used?
Who wrote this code? Where does he work?
What documents exist about that concept?
Which laboratories are included in that project?
Which systems depend on this device?
What documents refer to this one?

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Teenaged Boomers’ Last Dance: Chances Are

1957 was a stellar year for Johnny Mathis with no less than six major hit recordings, three of them reaching the Top 10, and the immortal classic “Chances Are” peaking at #1 on Cash Box on October 12, 1957 for two weeks while reaching #4 on Billboard. It is the song he is best remembered for.

Mathis was a giant in the pop music genre. Pop music, later to be classified as “easy listening” or “adult contemporary,” was as much a major force in music as rock n’ roll, R&B, country, folk, jazz, or any other form. If a song was good, it was a hit and went to the Top 40, as simple as that. No discrimination over what kind of song it was. That was the musical land scape over which artists like Johnny Mathis, Tony Bennett, Connie Francis, Bobby Darin, Ella Fitzgerald, Bobby Vinton, and others loomed as large as Elvis Presley, Ricky Nelson, Ben E. King, The Shirelles, The Beatles, or Lesley Gore.

All of the footage in this video was shot in 1959 by Centron Productions … from a rare COLOR film short entitled “Innocent Party.” It was directed and produced by none other than Herk Harvey, who you may remember as being the director of the immortal 1962 classic, Carnival Of Souls. He also starred as lead ghoul in the film. However, before and after that movie, Harvey produced and directed a number of dramatic educational shorts for high school teens and young adults dealing in a wide range of topics, mostly shot in his adopted home town of Lawrence, Kansas.

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The five “faces” of oppression – violence, exploitation, marginalization, powerlessness, and cultural imperialism – formed the backdrop for their entire educational experience. And in case it isn’t obvious, white males were the primary source of all of the above thus leading to a generation of self-hating white guys. So is it any wonder that so many of them emerge from their biological childhood uninformed, misinformed, and confused? MOTUS A.D

As you get older you spend more and more time in doctors’ waiting rooms. It’s a bug. Not a feature. A feature of doctors’ waiting rooms is that you get to catch up on magazines you wouldn’t pay any attention to in any other circumstance. And a brief browse through these slick little packages of cultural irrelevance reacquaints you with the hoary fact that no single element of our media lives can escape the latest most glittering and vibrant lies.

I spent the better part of 30 years working in magazines. Organ. City. Earth. Penthouse. Omni. Penthouse encore. I loved the field. I loved magazines. I’d spend a couple hundred bucks a month on magazines bought at the exhaustive magazine stand in the Pan Am building just before you rode the escalators down into the grand canyon of Grand Central. In those days, as editors, we’d try to make our magazine interesting for our readers. These days it seems that magazine staffs seek to make their magazines part of the media’s Soft Machine of stultifying propaganda approved by their human resources departments; all boringly predictable in their goose-stepping homage to the grand cultural lies of our leprotic era.

Here’s an example from my own visit to my own doctor’s waiting room last week. It was crowded with people both old and older and, arriving late, I found all the interesting magazines taken. Leftover was this collection of a Meridith Publishing slab of slimed pablum called “Parents.”

You’d imagine something called “Parents” would celebrate, well, normal parents. But no. Only odd “non-trad-dad” couplings or “non-couplings” seem to make the cover of Parents these days. Especially missing seems to be the fathers of the Caucasian persuasion.  Nothing all that unusual about that these days. That’s pretty much how the soft machine pumps out that pink slime percolating in the pit at the politically correct cultural clambake.

I took some photos to show you what I mean, but you already know what I mean. Don’t you? [N.B. The last layout was not only used in “Parents” but also in “Family Circle” to, I suppose, underscore that the circle of the family includes every family you can think of, and many that you haven’t even thought of yet but will be suitably informed of when necessary.] [click to continue…]

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True But Forbidden 11

“From what I’ve been able to tell from news reports, here is the Democrats’ 2020 campaign platform in a nutshell: ‘We hate you, we *really* hate Jews, we hate babies, we hate America, and we want you to starve. Now give us all your guns.’”  The Morning Rant

Exquisite Rot: Spalted Wood and the Lost Art of Intarsia

What about the plastics in our oceans and in every molecule of our bodies? Naw, I prefer trillion dollar subsidies to the well-connected. Will we go to the moon again, and in that epic effort unleash our imagination to discover the bottoms of the oceans and the cures for diseases which have so long ailed us? Naw let’s talk more about socialism, let’s race to the bottom embracing again for the umpteenth time the ideology of loss and stupidity and death, as so many others have. It’s more correct after all for if no star burns very bright my nakedness is much less obvious… Of course we – too – know the answer to our arriving ordeal. When I say “we” I mean the west. But instead of seeking solutions we are instead engaged in an epic fight (a historic bait and switch) over who will be the elites who will find their spots in our modern day Noah’s Ark. And those who fight it out on Twitter – to their own destruction…? – cannon fodder in the culture wars.  Our Coming Dystopia

The girl who executed Nazis after seducing them in bars dies aged 92 

A Revered Photojournalist’s Chronicle of Lower Manhattan on the Brink of Transformation   But when Lyon looked at them he saw “fossils,” traces of life dating back to before the Civil War. So, with funding from the The New York State Council on the Arts, he set out with a view camera, slipping in and out of demolition sites from the East River to the Hudson. In a project he titled “The Destruction of Lower Manhattan,” he photographed the folks leaving buildings and those tearing them down, and, in so doing, documented the social dismantling that buzzes under every project billed as urban renewal.

Colonel Sanders Endured a Lifetime of Struggle to Become the Face of KFC [click to continue…]

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“His signature every day look was all his: a plain pocketed T-shirt designed by the fashion house Fruit of the Loom…”

Harry Weathersby Stamps, ladies’ man, foodie, natty dresser, and accomplished traveler, died on Saturday, March 9, 2013.

Harry was locally sourcing his food years before chefs in California starting using cilantro and arugula (both of which he hated). For his signature bacon and tomato sandwich, he procured 100% all white Bunny Bread from Georgia, Blue Plate mayonnaise from New Orleans, Sauer’s black pepper from Virginia, home grown tomatoes from outside Oxford, and Tennessee’s Benton bacon from his bacon-of-the-month subscription. As a point of pride, he purported to remember every meal he had eaten in his 80 years of life.

The women in his life were numerous. He particularly fancied smart women. He loved his mom Wilma Hartzog (deceased), who with the help of her sisters and cousins in New Hebron reared Harry after his father Walter’s death when Harry was 12. He worshipped his older sister Lynn Stamps Garner (deceased), a character in her own right, and her daughter Lynda Lightsey of Hattiesburg. He married his main squeeze Ann Moore, a home economics teacher, almost 50 years ago, with whom they had two girls Amanda Lewis of Dallas, and Alison of Starkville. He taught them to fish, to select a quality hammer, to love nature, and to just be thankful. He took great pride in stocking their tool boxes.   [click to continue…]

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One phrase that starts to pin my BS meter is “Scientists Say.” First you have this amorphous but supposedly YUGE! grouping of “Scientists.” Then this “amorphous but supposedly YUGE! grouping” is caught in the act of “saying” something in some sort of unison; a kind of vast Mormon Tabernacle Choir pronouncement that is “most scientific.” Sounds about as solid and stable as a bucket of eels. And just about as distasteful. This is especially true when the media gets a chance to debunk “religion” with “Because Science! Damnitall.”

Back in 2006 National Geographic got all heated up about biblical ice in the sea of Galilee and so let drop a “Scientists Say” chunklet: Jesus May Have Walked on Ice, Not Water, Scientists Say . I’m not nearly so objective. After I read the story, I thought it could more reasonably be headlined, Scientist Confirms Popular Theory That Most Scientists Are Atheistic Asses with Too Much Time and Money on their Hands, Sensible People Say

The New Testament says that Jesus walked on water, but a Florida university professor believes there could be a less miraculous explanation — he walked on a floating piece of ice…. Nof, a professor of oceanography at Florida State University, said on Tuesday that his study found an unusual combination of water and atmospheric conditions in what is now northern Israel could have led to ice formation on the Sea of Galilee…..

“If you ask me if I believe someone walked on water, no, I don’t,” Nof said. “Maybe somebody walked on the ice, I don’t know. I believe that something natural was there that explains it.”

“We leave to others the question of whether or not our research explains the biblical account.”

I leave to others the question of whether or not this research is worth diddly-squat. What is of broader interest is the present state of the secular mindset to all things religious.

Religious in the Christian sense, that is, since the current global climate of “Fear of Muslims” seems to have created a shortage of “scientific research” into the various miracles and powers assigned to Allah in the Koran. Indeed, given the reaction to a drawing of the Prophet with a bomb in his turban, it is not hard to imagine that even if a “scientist” were to notice “something natural that explains” Allah, his next thought would be something on the order of “Why should I put my head on the chopping block?” Jesus, being a more forgiving God, is safer game.

Of course, it is, as scientists are wont to say, ‘only a theory.’ This ‘only a theory’ argument is common and is used in two ways. [click to continue…]

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The Valley of Shells and Bones

“What scaled and feathered fetish shakes awake our loamy sleep
in these sealed vaults where dust and sand enrobe our golden masks
that hover over dreaming faces drowned in tinted musk?
Here where the spider curls and chitters in the crystal locket.
Here as time’s mouth leeches blood and brain and bids
the leather skin to tighten in on the empty, staring socket,
and bind the breath that fading far once laughed within the dusk?”

Here is your thin tin trowel,
And here your sable brush,
For prying loose these mitered stones,
And sweeping off the dust
That sifts between these souls
Like paling ebony snow,
As you squat above the site
Where they worshiped once below.
Come thrust your torch
Through shattered walls,
And map the stains on stone,
And explicate their distant deaths
From strewn patterns of bone.

The distance that such deaths define
Is measured by that ageless path
That winds up from the sea’s last limb
Meandering to the blood’s demands,
And, rolling over shells’ sharp rims,
Finally finds its well-trod way
To midnight’s flaming brands
Where vacant, lusting faces grin
Within masks of whitened clay.

This path slopes down through the stunted woods
Where the mantis ruts and broods,
Then spirals down to the sacred caves
Where men in twitching files repeat
The witless chants of wind and waves.

“Thick curds of rancid smoke performed our genuflections.
Our flayed limbs writhed, then steamed in screams of light.
Our lidless eyes became one daring crow’s confections.
Our shriveled nerves shrank back from chittering flames’ delight.
Our marrow melted fast as flames licked up our blackened bones.
Our gaping mouths spewed rancid smoke as if they would relate
the secret magic flint and steel on tethered flesh create.”

Here is your iron pick,
And here your crested spoon.
Not silver, true, but still
The emblem of your art,
Which is, to wit,
To lay buried bodies bare;
Explain their ritual agonies,
Deduce their sorry fate,
Describe their diet, sex,
The colors of their hair,
And tell how long
Their ashen lair
Has lurked beneath
Our present pleasant State.

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Rite of Spring

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