More specifically concerning: moodiness
15 March 2001, around 14.56.
To see ‘The Genius of Rome: 1592–1623;’ or, in other words, to see paintings by Caravaggio and … some other guys. Then wandered around the city feeling young and disillusioned, everyone and everything seeming uglier and stupider and slower than they should be. Two elderly ladies on the bus into town and St John the […]
18 May 2001, around 18.41.
After the ever-entertaining lecture on the city of Rome – the lecturer condescending to swear at the slide projector, which had a disposition to be willful — went to the Ashmolean. God’s gallery was shut for construction and conservation work, the red walls and the tops of paintings barely visible over a temporary divider; so, […]
12 October 2001, around 16.31.
Shaping into an utter emptiness. – oh – I was thinking, for a moment, of the world beyond the silly sighing, past the swaying hum of a string quartet, a world of mirth and loud laughter, of harsh tones and brash smiles, of confused and blurring lines, of lights unsteady and the dark ever before […]
1.11.01 – Thursday
1 November 2001, around 15.53.
Much of the day spent in reading – Agora excavations and Dreiser’s The ‘Genius’. Waited late into the night in the language center for befuddled first-year Latin students to seek help; apparently, on Thursday nights, beginning Latinists have no difficulties with the lingua. I was left, then, to amuse myself as best I could, which […]
5.11.01 – Monday
5 November 2001, around 15.55.
I have come to the inevitable conclusion. Running into the eternal interrogative (thinking Forsterian here, can you tell?): the answer can, the answer must, for me at least, be yes. Not the ‘yes’ that means ‘no,’ not the affirmative that scorns, but that quiet ever so blank ‘yes’ which means everything & nothing, offers no […]
18.11.01 – Sunday
18 November 2001, around 15.56.
Lulled, gently, into the certitude of reading. Carefully writing out ideas and quotations on 3×5 cards, printing neatly, citing assiduously. Met J. at the Haymarket, chattering away about the month of October (where did it go? what happened? what did you do?) and the inchoate, incomprehensible fear of application (both to one’s studies and to […]
22.11.01 – Thursday
22 November 2001, around 16.00.
Virginia Woolf’s Between the Acts – Palestrina, Missa Brevis – the smell of baking apples – seeds of a pomegranate. Cold air – blue sky.
24.11.01 – Saturday
24 November 2001, around 16.02.
I have not spoken to anyone for three days. My voice feels harsh and tight in my throat, a sharp clenched fist holding back – oh, everything. A hungry, haunted look now taints me about the eyes, and I must look away from passing strangers lest from my stares they catch hold of my unease, […]
29.11.01 – Thursday
29 November 2001, around 16.03.
The library. Dusty concrete steps to metal stacks and weak green-blue light. Reciprocity – sincerity – altruism. Walking. Cafés. Leading. Following. Chasing. Darkness. How the history crowds around one, pressing in on all sides, heading towards some incontrovertible truth.
8.01.02 – Tuesday
8 January 2002, around 17.17.
Went last night to the Pleasant St. Theater and saw The Royal Tenenbaums on M’s recommendation. Anyway, it was enjoyable, much as reading Sartre or Pound in a bus station with the cold smell of dirt, stale coffee, and old cigarettes is fun, I suppose. It was uplifting, a tale of redemption, &c. Walked home […]
3 January 2003, around 7.11.
It is a peculiar sort of blindness; I’m not sure I can explain it. I cannot call it literal. Because it is not. It is nothing of the sort. What it is, rather, is the a willful refusal to see. Perhaps not a refusal to see—perhaps an elision of what one notices. And I admit, […]
19 January 2003, around 11.02.
An evening mildly out upon the town, following that vaguest of inclinations: civility. The plan had been to step out to the pub on the corner by the house; but peering in the windows at the sodden murmurings of the gray-haired regulars at the bar, we four, young and indecisive, given rather to nights ‘at […]
an Observation (1)
30 January 2003, around 11.10.
Oh, elegies are easy, I suppose. It is simple to sing of sorrows, and tumble through agonies towards some great katharsis, as though every strong emotion needs its purge. All happinesses are alike, the knowing novelist intones. But this very violence in ourselves, this need for grief, for rage, for some last word, even to […]
27 June 2003, around 13.33.
general principles • moral turpitude • progressive non-action • radical self-sufficiency • righteous indignation • pompous twit
de pumilis libellis
20 January 2004, around 19.16.
…by falsifying him into something monstrously charming and extraordinary they hope to be able to keep him alive forever. — Pär Lagerkvist (2002.47, p. 159) Owing to my best efforts to keep an open mind and my almost miraculous attempts to overcome my aversion for the word ‘snark’ and most people who use it, the […]
city of stone
19 January 2010, around 8.50.
Birds of dark omen wait for you in the city of stone.
13 February 2020, around 5.42.
An arbitrary detail from ‘Portrait of the Comte De M.’ by Jérôme-Martin Langlois (1831). Just last Tuesday, I ended up at the art museum, although I hadn’t intended to go. It was after going to the dentist, you see, and my jaw was sore from a filling and the right side of my face was […]
megrims, firks and melancholies
15 June 2022, around 11.03.
The weekend started so well: I got up early on Saturday and went for a run – not my usual day, but the book group was meeting that evening, which meant a (relatively) late night, which led me to go for my run a day early in the hopes of cultivating greater flexibility in my schedule […]