Head start

‘We dread the future only when we are not sure we can kill ourselves when we want to.’  ‘Having always lived in fear of being surprised by the worst, I have tried in every circumstance to get a head start, flinging myself into misfortune long before it occurred:

E.M.Cioran from The Book of Life

While the first part may not be true about every one’s life , especially those who do not contemplate suicide, the second part finds an echo in everyone’s past.

Many times I used to think if only could steal a march over fate , not by actually going through a possible misfortune brought by us on ourselves but by thinking up all the possibilities in which fate can inflict a misfortune . 

By thinking up all the possibilities we are depriving fate of the chance to surprise us. And if fate does send us the misfortunes from among the possibilities already thought up by us ,we are one up on fate. If,on the other hand, fate does not send us any in order not admit defeat, we manage to surprise fate and are  still one up on fate! We have had a  head start on our destiny.





Use of repetition

“Within a properly framed context, Lakoff points out that cognitively speaking, the more expressions are repeated, the stronger those ideas are lodged in the circuitry of your brain. Advertisers know it well, so do salesmen. Repetition is key for framing and controlling language and public perception. And at least in the examples above, Donald Trump is often nothing if not repetitive.”

Language wars / by Chi Luu 

Trump may be past master at repetition.It never  has occurred to me repetition helps frame and crystallise public opinion.

When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists, and some, I assume, are good people.

They are not sending you. They are not sending you. They are sending…
They are bringing drugs, they are bringing crime.”

The word sending/send occurs five times.We have seen demagogues in our country using the same technique successfully.

Anatomy of distortion

Whether she’s writing about the endless curiosity of the body, the challenges that accompany being a feminist who isn’t afraid to defend her autonomy….

Kimmy Walters in an interview by Mandy Shunnarah following her poetry book publication Killer

Reading this ,I wonder how I have come to read the word “autonomy” that is actually there, as “anatomy “. I noticed the perversion only when I took down this quote for keep.

Now, was it perversion? That was not what I intended but that was how it would emerge from my keyboard.

Coming back to “Autonomy”, I confess the word “anatomy” suggested itself to me when I started taking down notes. Was it because she was writing about the endless curiosity about the body?  The next thing you see is a feminist talking about the anatomy of the body, rather than autonomy of the feminist mind ,which means probably perceptual independence from male point of view that tends to color a person’s world view in a dominantly male world.

As a liberal I feel conscience-stricken about how we tend to distort what we read ,in line with our own narrow thinking.

Self-Portrait, Yawning – Google Arts & Culture

Self-Portrait, Yawning – Google Arts & Culture

Joseph Ducreux the French painter(1783) had his selfish portrait of himself. He was found to be yawning and stretching , generally making faces.There were no selfie sticks then.
He had to imagine his own selfish thing.Which he did. No doubt he overdid it and was rather boring.Between us two, he  might have found himself boring. Hence his yawn.

Bana in East Aleppo

“There’s Internet in East Aleppo. There’s solar in E. Aleppo. There’s Bana in E. Aleppo who’s suffering & tweeting. Good night. “- Fatemah

“Good evening my friends. What are you doing today? I am happy I lost two more teeth. – Bana #Aleppo ”

There is internet in East Aleppo. Solar in East Aleppo. There is Bana in East Aleppo.

Good evening, friends. What are you doing today ?

We are buying vegetables for the night. We are writing poems. We are staring at the computer screen. We will tell you when we are through.

You have lost two teeth already? Ok. We had lost all ours long ago.

She tweets like a tiny bird on truth
Who is searching for middle tooth.

Tooth fairy fears to come to sooth.
The uncles hurl bombs from south.

She’ll come after they finish drops.
And then there will be no love left,

And no sweet birds in the blue sky
Nor her tweets, her sweet tweets.

(Referring to seven year old Bana’s tweets from Aleppo about the horrors of the war in Syria)

Inner speech

“Language is the hallmark of humanity—it allows us to form deep relationships and complex societies. But we also use it when we’re all alone; it shapes even our silent relationships with ourselves. In his book, The Voices Within, Charles Fernyhough gives a historical overview of “inner speech”—the more scientific term for “talking to yourself in your head.”


The author says besides talking to others we talk to ourselves a kind of inner language that has no words or words fewer than words of our language but that which runs faster .

Just now what is taking place within me as I am thinking and writing about it?  I think I was meandering and now I reach a point very different to what the normal language may have taken me to. But at the end if it, I land up in a poem about a leader who is speaking her inner language from below the earth where death had reached her yesterday evening. In the normal language there is no sense to what I say I was doing.

In my poem it makes sense, if I think all this through the inner language in me that runs faster than a language. So I am in a mess. But poetry is about being in mess, in the inner language that takes long leaps across spaces between words .

Beginning my studies:Walt Whitman

Beginning my studies the first step pleas’d me so much,
The mere fact of consciousness, these forms, the power of
The least insect or animal, the senses, eyesight, love,
The first step I say awed me and pleas’d me so much,
I have hardly gone and hardly wish’d to go any farther,
But stop and loiter all the time to sing it in ecstatic songs.

[From Leaves of Grass]

To a poet the beginning to explore nature is the beginning of studies- as you begin you have to understand the alphabet of the fascinating world of nature, the nature of things and the layers of consciousness in which your own self lies buried. You have to look at yourself as part of this world of forms, the power of motion, the light in things, the way light falls on things and makes them out against the things of the world. In the process of taking it all in , a song bursts forth, a song of joy, a song of celebration much before you start experiencing the world in its fullness.

The music pre-empts exploration and the poetry robs you of the experience of going further towards the fuller and richer joys that lay ahead in this fascinating world. A wondrous adventure is lost in the setting of the song to its tune, to a mad pursuit of a rhythm. A poetry recollected in tranquillity is lost to a song that flows prematurely as we enter the world of “the least insect, the animal, the senses, eyesight, love” at the very first step.