Changes of State - States of Change

Edward Bryne
From "Délires"
In Open Text Volume 2 Canadian Poetry and Poetics in the 21st Century

Even successful snowmen must melt.
Subtle alliterations.

And so for day 2374

Flavour Listings

Where taste begins with names.


Strawberry, Earl Grey Tea
Spruce Mint
Cranberry, Ginger
Peppermint, Cheesecake
Rosemary, Orange
Sugar Plum Jelly
Cherry, Marzipan
Coffee, Cinnamon
Yuzu, Sake
Sherry, Milk Chocolate
Pistachio, Bergamot
Orange Blossom, Honey
Cinnamon, Brown Butter
Cherry, Vanilla
Raspberry Rose Fennel
Lime, Ginger, Black Pepper
Salted Caramel

Names for chocolate bonbons - Names for flights of imagination.

And so for day 2373

Disappearing Appearance

Untangling the myth from the fact to make a greater statement about not peering:

An ostrich does not bury its head in the sand; it lays its neck flat to the ground so as to appear from a distance like a mound of earth. That facts are innumerable is not the problem. That we tend to look elsewhere is.
"The Problem"
Noah Eli Gordon
From Is That the Sound of a Piano Coming from Several Houses Down?

And so for day 2372

Seating and Setting

Jeremiah Tower
Table Manners: How to Behave in the Modern World and Why Bother

SEATING PLAN: The arrangements should make well-mannered sparks. You don't have to invite couples and if you do, you don't have to seat them next to each other. They already see enough of each other. Put people next to one another who will enjoy that choice and create interest around the table. You can go mad trying to stick to the man-woman-man format when someone cancels at the last minute. Forget it. We live in a world of multitudes of fluid genders.
I like to juxtapose this with the opening advice of the next section: "Very little is about you at someone else's dinner party except your table manners."

And so for day 2371

Fiction Is No Firewall

If you have been reading to stay sane, think again.

And so we were strengthened, because belief, for beings like us, is the colostrum of existence. After Saachi left, the Ada sank even more into her books, by instinct, separating herself from this world and disappearing into others. She read everywhere: on the toilet, at the dining table, in the library before school assembly each morning. It is not clear how much saving these books were capable of.
Who is speaking? Ọgbanje

On the flyleaf of the dustjacket
We came from somewhere, everything does. When the transition is made from spirit to flesh, the gates are meant to be closed. It’s a kindness. It would be cruel not to. Perhaps the gods forgot – they can be absent-minded like that.
Akwaeke Emezi

And so for day 2370

And Nominated for Best Subtitle...

Ryan Fitzpatrick and Jonathan Ball have a long subtitle with a wonderfully tongue-in-cheek metadiscursive moment.

Why Poetry Sucks

An Anthology of Humorous Experimental Canadian
Poetry in English Written by Canadians for Canadians
(or American Bodysnatchers) in the Early Years of the
21st Century with an Overly Long and
Not That Clever Subtitle the Publisher Rightly Refused
to Put on the Cover
The cover does have a subtitle

cover poetry sucks
An Anthology of Humorous Experimental Canadian Poetry.

And so for day 2369

The Burial of Hunger

In a paragraph referencing culinary history from Apicius on the order of courses, Mario Pei presents a sentence containing and extending a long repeated pattern:

Once the arts of civilization are established, it seems normal to open the meal with food elements that stimulate the appetite, and to close it with foods of a cloying nature, which put the seal upon the tomb of departed hunger.
Mario Pei - Introduction to The Talisman Italian Cook Book by Ada Boni.

And so for day 2368

Three More Minute Pauses

Three more aphorisms lifted from their embedding in surreal non sequiturs.

Greg Evason
The Red Blind
Toronto: The Pink Dog Press, 1991

Swearing is justifiable when you are a walking dictionary.
A word like prostitution can confuse a lot of people.
Words are living breathing replicas.
Lexical commercials.

And so for day 2367

And You Shall Know Them By Their Plumbing

Jun'ichirō Tanizaki
In Praise of Shadows
Translated by Thomas J. Harper and Edward G. Seidensticker

Every time I am shown to an old, dimly lit, and, I would add, impeccably clean toilet in a Nara or Kyoto temple, I am impressed with the singular virtues of Japanese architecture. The parlour may have its charms, but the Japanese toilet truly is a place of spiritual repose. It always stands apart from the main building, at the end of a corridor, in a grove fragrant with leaves and moss. No words can describe that sensation as one sits in the dim light, basking in the faint glow reflected from the shoji, lost in mediation or gazing out at the garden.
Lighting. Noise levels. And so much can be accomplished by closing one's eyes and listening for the beat of one's heart. Whatever location we may be in. For whatever purpose.

And so for day 2366

Hooded Figures - Figured Hoods

I first came across a portion of the illustration by Wesley Bates in a Gaspereau Press catalogue.

In the background you see figures in capriotes injecting a distinctly Klansman motif for which one finds a textual basis in the Forward Foreword.
i hope I've played down Shylock's villainy, but played up the pro-Caucasian Christian Capitalist‡ (Apartheid-like) bias of the Venetian Republic.

‡This Trumpist "CCC" is the prelude to the KKK?
George Elliott Clarke. The Merchant of Venice (Retried).

And if you look carefully at the curtains above the throne you will see swastikas.

And so for day 2365

Sometimes Smallsongs

It happens. You enter a bookstore. Take a volume from the shelf. Browse. And are caught up by a passage.

Though the aiodoi are not of space and time, it is of space and time that they sing, and it is to the smallsongs of space and time they hear (for they hear all songs, always and everywhere) that they listen most closely . . . even though so many of the smallsongs are sad, or angry, or simply wrong.
There is an almost inconspicuous "to" in there which leads to the mis-construction of "to they hear" (odd but not entirely since to grant a hearing to is a kind of judicial procedure). As well the "hearing to" proceeds the listening following the distinction in English between hearing and listening. But if you re-read the passage the stray, little "to" comes into focus as "to that they listen". Most closely. Makes a pretty compositions "to that (hearing) they listen".

Frederik Pohl & Jack Williamson, The Singers of Time bought and brought home to read (almost aloud).

I love the invention of the word “smallsongs” – puts me in mind of all the little tunes we create and carry in our day to day lives.

By paying attention to how some people are listening, quality of their silence, the tenor of their questions, you ensure that others get heard.

And so for day 2364

The Body, Its Environment, Its Exercise

Northrop Frye captured something of the imprinting that happens when good models abound. And are taken up, bodily.

Now if we write in a way that we never speak, the first thing that disappears is the rhythm. It is hardly possible to give any spring or bounce to words unless they come out of our own bodies and are, like dancing or singing, an expression of physical as well as mental energy. The second thing that disappears is the color. It is hardly possible to use vivid language unless one is seeing the imagery of oneself: even abstract words, if they are genuinely possessed by the person using them, will still retain something of the concrete metaphor they originally had. The third thing that disappears is the sense of personality, which only a basis in personal speech can ever supply.
My emphasis
The Well-Tempered Critic

There is a neat twist here. By focalizing the passage through the plural "we" we gain multiple "bodies". Our Bodies Our Selves. Our Poems Our Lives.

And so for day 2363

Gone Fishing for Turnips

The conclusion of a posting to Humanist that muses on the differences of a going towards and the being open to a coming...

What do these esoteric modes of reading or translating have to do with humanities computing? They begin to offer a glimpse of labels for a set of attitudes towards the act of processing text. The tools of humanities computing are for hunting and gathering: the going out. They are also for fishing: waiting to see what shows up. In a sense the tools of humanities computing can be set like traps or weirs.

The distinction between hunting and fishing breaks down when you consider the use of duck blinds. The distinction between gathering and fishing becomes moot when you consider harvesting a salmon run. Still there is some merit, I believe, in pondering whether one's orientation is towards aiming for a target, assembling a resource, or waiting to see what the network might bring.

I do like the idea of casting a net... gutting the fish not so much — though those guts do make good fertilizer for the garden.
And the words themselves lead us to different relations to the ecosystem of words.

And so for day 2362