Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Eleven days later

A long silence.

Silence for whom? Perceptible only to me. Silence does not exist when you are alone.

Talking presupposes a listener. Even in a soliloquy you split and talk to yourself.

I love solitude. It is the peace of the mind. Nothing can go wrong, everything is under control.

I think it was it Erich Kästner who wrote:

Einsam bist du sehr alleine
doch am schlimmsten ist die Einsamkeit zu zweit.

(Alone you can be very lonely
But loneliness is worst in a pair).

I never feel lonely alone. Or in the middle of a crowd. But in a room with a few people… or just one…

XMAS spam. Out of 46 emails, only one with personal homemade wishes. And even that one had many recipients.

Saturday, December 15, 2007


When the Present has latched its postern behind my tremulous stay,
And the May month flaps its glad green leaves like wings,
Delicate-filmed as new-spun silk, will the neighbours say,
'He was a man who used to notice such things'?

Remembering Thomas Hardy.

Others start by writing verses and mature into prose. Poetry is for the young.

Not so, Hardy. After writing ten major novels and some short stories, he stopped writing prose and completed his work with vibrant poetry.

Yes, he was a man who "used to notice such things".

When I am thinking of my "afterwards", my main concern are the lost lonely moments. Of the shared experiences, some may survive in the memory of those who shared them. Others - the ones I have written down - could prolong their existence in the minds of my readers. (Should there be any...).

But my very own secret thoughts, never told, never written, never shared, will die with me.

Excepting the ones in this blog. But again, this is anonymous. Whose thoughts?

Monday, December 10, 2007


A whole week without posting. Nothing to write here about. Or, better, nothing that could be written down. I go through a period of dilemmas and precarious equilibriums. Anything I write could destroy them. I'd rather remain silent and wait.

I said to my soul, be still, and wait without hope
For hope would be hope for the wrong thing; wait without love
For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith
But the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.
Wait without thought, for you are not ready for thought:
So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing.

T.S. Eliot

Monday, December 3, 2007

Feeding strays

Cats are selfish creatures. If you want to feed nine hungry cats - you had better have nine plates, otherwise they will start fighting and the strongest will eat a double portion.

After the feeding: the cats sit in the sunlight, digesting and I start washing the dishes. The rays of the sun enlivened the colors - so I took out my mobile phone and captured the picture.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

"Off with his head!"

I do not know how many times I have read Alice in Wonderland - and how many more times I have gone through the book's pages to find a scene. Practically that is not necessary - I know the whole book by heart. But I enjoy reading it more than reciting it.

Here is today's episode:

`It's a friend of mine--a Cheshire Cat,' said Alice: `allow me to introduce it.'

`I don't like the look of it at all,' said the King: `however, it may kiss my hand if it likes.'

`I'd rather not,' the Cat remarked.

`Don't be impertinent,' said the King, `and don't look at me like that!' He got behind Alice as he spoke.

`A cat may look at a king,' said Alice. `I've read that in some book, but I don't remember where.'

`Well, it must be removed,' said the King very decidedly, and he called the Queen, who was passing at the moment, `My dear! I wish you would have this cat removed!'

The Queen had only one way of settling all difficulties, great or small. `Off with his head!' she said, without even looking round.

`I'll fetch the executioner myself,' said the King eagerly, and he hurried off.

Up to here everything is in accordance with the Queen's basic attitude. But Logic intrudes some paragraphs later (Dodgson was a logician):

When she (Alice) got back to the Cheshire Cat, she was surprised to find quite a large crowd collected round it: there was a dispute going on between the executioner, the King, and the Queen, who were all talking at once, while all the rest were quite silent, and looked very uncomfortable.

The moment Alice appeared, she was appealed to by all three to settle the question, and they repeated their arguments to her, though, as they all spoke at once, she found it very hard indeed to make out exactly what they said.

The executioner's argument was, that you couldn't cut off a head unless there was a body to cut it off from: that he had never had to do such a thing before, and he wasn't going to begin at HIS time of life.

The King's argument was, that anything that had a head could be beheaded, and that you weren't to talk nonsense.

The Queen's argument was, that if something wasn't done about it in less than no time she'd have everybody executed, all round. (It was this last remark that had made the whole party look so grave and anxious.)


I think the Queen's problem solving method is really unique. Think how many times it has been applied in the last centuries...

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


A rainy day, a dark dim day. I had to protect my cellphone and in my first shot photographed my thumb.

"Jardins sous la pluie". Was it Debussy or Ravel? I could look it up in Google - but the mood is the same...

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

A weird dream

I was supposed to give a lecture – in a bar. The subject was something I knew nothing about: the relationship of an obscure 19th century woman playwright, with a “national” poet. I protested. I did not like the idea of a hotel bar, I had not the faintest notion about the subject and I resented the fact that my speech would start at 11:15 PM. (It is my usual bedtime). I woke up, still complaining. I tried to convince myself that this was a dream.

I fell asleep again and the dream went on. The time for the lecture was near. I had to pee. I went to the toilet and there was a huge queue of men waiting. I had to go back – it was exactly 11:15. (I still remember the watch dial). I started the conference trying to explain that I knew nothing about the subject. The espresso machine was so loud; even I could not hear myself speak.

Somebody stood up. He had an air of authority. He said: “I think it would be better if you chose another topic. Something more light. Let’s have a few jokes!” I objected. I was no stand up comedian. But the audience loved the proposal. The applause was so loud that I woke up – for good.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Well, yes...

...I really do enjoy solitude here. When I want company, I flee to my other blogs. But still there is a tingle of expectation: how long will it take until somebody, by chance, stumbles upon this blog. A month? A year? Never?

This is a wager. A bottle with brief messages thrown in the oceanic Internet. Travelling on the crest of the waves. No land in sight. No shore to berth.

No sailor shouting: Land ho!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Zeroing in

Zero and zero and zero comments. I never though I would so much delight in nothingness.

Zero comments means: you don't have to read, you don't have to answer. You can continue your soliloquy uninterrupted.

Coming from a blog with hundreds of comments, I find so much solace in this desert of zeros.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

A leaf...

...met a cellphone - autumn sonata. Uploaded directly, on the spot

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

My heart leaps up

My heart leaps up when I behold

A rainbow in the sky:
So was it when my life began,
So is it now I am a man,
So be it when I shall grow old
Or let me die!
The Child is father of the Man:
And I could wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety.

The rainbow appeared suddenly this afternoon on a turn of the road. It brought wonder, happiness and the remembrance of William Wordsworth's poem, which I had learned by heart sixty years ago - and forgotten since.

So be it when I shall grow old

So it is, brother William - so it is! I am old now, and I know.


I knew I had two very important appointments - one for today and one for tomorrow. But I did not remember which, when and with whom. I only knew that today's meeting was at eleven o clock. As the time came near, I was seized by angst and a total paralysis. I had to go, it was urgent, crucial, but where?

A nightmare. (I like the German word Alptraum better. French cauchemar is not bad either). I think it was a distorted reminder of my business days, when I lived from meeting to meeting. Something I had to pay for, now. I woke up in a total confusion.

Monday, November 19, 2007


"To become morally independent of one's formative society... is the only means of moral progress, the establishment of some higher ethical concept".

William Empson

It took me some decades to achieve this independence. I am not sure my new ethical concepts are higher. At least they are mine...

A lonely lamp...

...lights only itself.


Random notes, in the margins of everyday life. By someone who was once an actor and sits now in the audience. Doodling has dwindled - we now play solitaire on screen during meetings or telephone calls. But inner doodling is still there. That is what this blog is about.