Friday, October 21, 2011


...der Heilige gibt den halben Mantel, die Gottheit den ganzen Schleier.

...the holy man gives half of his coat, divinity the whole veil.

- Franz Hessel, Ermunterung zum Genuss.
- Southern Netherlands, Reliquary of the Virgin's Veil, early 15th century, detail

thank you, woolgathersome, for bringing this image to me.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

a vagabond melancholy.

There on the pier, stabbed by an ice pick, the Empress Elizabeth, symbol of the oldest European monarchy, which must die at the villainous hand. The contemptible Lucheni raved about making noise and killing someone in the public eye. But it was really the enduring vagabond melancholy of Elizabeth Wittelsbach that, in the mysterious dialogue of souls, summoned the madman to Geneva from Piedmont and anointed him as her assassin. For that matter, even the Italian government was a Lucheni. (Perhaps in its death wish, Vienna itself summoned him.)

- Guido Ceronetti, The Silence of the Body

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

such moments in gestures.

I have read now quickly, now slowly through the whole of your wonderful book.

What at first would appear to be an Ars Morendi
Suddenly shifts into alternative contemplations
On history, literature, religion:
All products of the Self.

The resonance is of one who, because of age,
Contemplates his own mortality
And tries to persuade himself
That though the end is the end
Life is not pointless.

The art of book-making shines on every page
Reflecting the author’s own claim to immortality
With rare choices and artful placement
On beautiful paper softly radiating a luminous sepia.

- Glenn Watkins on To Die No More

Glenn Watkins is the coeditor of the complete works of Gesualdo and author of Gesualdo: The Man and His Music (1973) and The Gesualdo Hex: Music, Myth and Memory (2010). He is also the author of Soundings: Music in the 20th Century (1988); Pyramids at the Louvre (1994); and Proof Through the Night: Music and the Great War (2003).