François et Jacques



On dirait que les media françaises préfèrent tourner la page sur le dernier 'épisode Hollandais'. Mais à titre personnel, on se demande si la France devrait accorder tant de confiance quasi aveugle au plus éminent candidat de la gauche aux présidentielles dont le comportement a été assez évasif sinon suspect?

On fait encore allusion bien entendu à l'affaire Banon/DSK. Avec trop de véhémence, Monsieur Hollande nie toute implication, en admettant en même temps qu'il a été informé à l'époque de cette accusation de tentative de viol de Tristane Banon (février 2003) pendant un entretien qu'elle a eu avec l'ex directeur générale du FMI.*

Pour faire le point, aujourd'hui il importe peu d'accorder une importance ou non à cette accusation bien tardive de tentative de viol présumé de Banon. Ce qui semble important par contre est ce que Monsieur Hollande a dit dans son élan de s'écarter de toute implication. Il a dit que 'ce n'est pas à lui de donner des conseils de porter plainte ou non, que cela n'a rien à voir avec lui ni avec le parti socialiste', et manifestement ce n'est pas à lui non plus de réagir en aucune manière malgré l'ampleur de cette grave accusation concernant un collègue proche.

Peut-on permettre un tel manque d'engagement et de responsabilité d'un candidat potentiel des présidentielles?
Imaginons par exemple que Monsieur Hollande ait été le Président élu de la France pendant que Kadhafi tirait sur son peuple avec des armes antiaériennes. Imaginons que le peuple demandait de l'aide ou du conseil à la France, et une délégation représentant ce peuple brutalement opprimé rendait visite à la France pour demander son soutien.
Avec relativement la même attitude exprimée à l'égard du cas Banon, Monsieur Hollande aurait eu donc le droit de répondre que ce n'est pas à lui de donner des conseils pour ou contre, que cela n'a rien à voir avec lui, ni avec le gouvernement socialiste, ni donc avec la France, et ce ne serait manifestement pas à lui de réagir en aucune manière malgré l'ampleur de la gravité de la situation libyenne.

Monsieur Hollande né le 12 août 1954 à Rouen est le fils du Dr. George Hollande, médecin ORL. Il se peut que le Docteur n'ait jamais été le meilleur fan de Charles de Gaulle car il était favorable à l'Algérie française, carrément reniée finalement par ce dernier.

Le bilan de François Hollande n'est pas sans tâche ni incohérence. Il a eu quatre enfants avec Ségolène Royal avant que leur séparation soit officialisée, ce qui pourrait même être considéré plutôt positif.. Mais une tâche marquante concerne la période où il était conseiller général de la Corrèze, (lieu cher aussi à Jacques Chirac, gaulliste dévoué, qui a été élu conseiller municipal de Sainte-Féréole, en Corrèze en 1965).
Quand François Hollande était conseiller général de la Corrèze donc, (élu en 2008) il a fait objet de critiques assez aiguës en 2010 après qu'une publication d'un rapport de la chambre régionale des comptes du Limousin ait indiqué que les contribuables corréziens ont payé 1,5 millions d'euros chaque année pour financer le musée du Président Jacques Chirac.
Lorsque Chirac disait- selon lui ironiquement- qu'il voterait pour Hollande, peut-être sa déclaration était bien moins ironique qu'il voulait le faire croire..

*Notons que Hollande savait bien que DSK était le favori comme candidat des présidentielles du parti socialiste. N'aurait il pas été plus responsable, plus intègre et plus digne en tant que Premier Secrétaire du parti, et en tant qu'homme, d'avoir essayé de remettre DSK sur les rails après cette affaire, en lui rappelant sa responsabilité et à quel point le parti et des millions de français comptaient sur lui? Ne pourrait on pas alors être porté à la conclusion que Hollande a choisi de ne rien faire et ne rien dire pour des intérêts plus personnels?
__
  
Cet article avec d'autres étaient mis en 'draft' (retirés temporairement) après l'élection de Monsieur Hollande Président de la France. Ca ne voulait en aucun cas dire qu'ils n'étaient plus valables, ou que l'on a modifié ses opinions, ou que l'on manque le courage de ses convictions. Il s'agissait simplement d'un geste initial de respect envers le Président et envers tous ceux qui ont voté pour lui.
Depuis l'élection de Monsieur Hollande certains articles à l'égard des élections françaises pourraient en effet être considérés comme de l'eau passée sous le pont.
Si j'ai pensé que cet article figurât parmi eux, il aurait continué à rester exclu.
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Text and dessin © Mirino. Source- general information and Wikipedia, with thanks. 
July 2011

Gobil and the Greenfly
























Whilst flying home one misty day
The little Greenfly lost his way.
Not far from there old Gobil lurked,
Singing softly as he worked-

'Spin, spin, tuck it in,
Knit one split one, safety-pin.
Web is sticky, web is strong,
Dinner time will not be long.'


 The little Greenfly was so small
He never saw the web at all,
But landed upon Gobil's nose,
So grateful for the brief repose.

Old Gobil twitched then kept quite still,
Certain of his spidery skill,
But then he sneezed, (to his dismay)
And blew the Greenfly on his way.

*

A methodical fly got caught 
In a web a spider had wrought,
But he stayed very still
And made out his last will
As his life would soon end,
He thought.

The spider, however, was old,
And had recently caught a bad cold.
When he started to cough
He shook the fly off,
And this tale the fly
Later told.
__
 
For the Rainbow alphabet doggerel, please go here
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Image and doggerel © Mirino (PW), July, 2011

Scottish myths 5


Thomas the Rhymer

It's said that the Eildon Hills consisted of one high ascent until the alchemist wizard, Michael Scott (ca. 1175 - 1232 ) ordered his imps- Prim, Prig and Pricker, to divide it into three hills. The north hill was where the largest Roman fortress of Scotland was built. Remains of the fort still exist.

Near the hills grew the Eildon tree, a favourite haunt of Thomas of Ercildoune (Earlston). One day as he lay beneath his tree, the Fairy Queen rode by on a noble white steed. She wore fine, green silk and crimson velvet, and fifty nine silver bells hung from the horse's mane.

It was no chance meeting, for the Fairy Queen knew that Thomas would be there. No doubt she also knew how he would react. He was totally enchanted by her beauty, and instantly fell in love with her.
He left with her, and for seven years he lived with her as her lover in Elfland.

After the seven years had passed the Fairy Queen led Thomas to her secret garden and there she gave him an apple. 'It will give thee a tongue that will never lie', she said. This is why he also became known as 'True Thomas'.
Without question he obeyed her command to never speak of what he had seen or heard in Elfland. Not only was he blessed with the parting gift of Truth, he was also blessed with the gift of Prophecy.

And as if it were all a magical dream that only lasted seven hours, Thomas awoke under the Eildon tree where he had first met the Fairy Queen.

Off the Eildon way which leads to the famous hills, where the Eildon tree once grew is marked by the Eildon Stone.


The prophesies of Thomas the Rhymer are recorded in the history of Scotland. Amongst other predictions they include the death of King Alexander III, (foreseen to be on a stormy night, the 18th of March, 1286) the Battle of Bannockburn, the Jacobite rebellions and the Union of Scotland and England.

The Ballad of Thomas the Rhymer.

True Thomas lay on Huntlie bank,

A marvel with his eye spied he. 

There he saw a lady bright 
Come riding by the Eildon Tree.

Her skirt was of the grass-green silk, 
Her mantle of the velvet fine, 

At every lock of her horse's mane 
Hung fifty silver bells and nine.

True Thomas he pulled off his cap 

And bowed down to his knee: 
"All hail, thou Queen of Heaven! 
For thy peer on earth I never did see."

"O no, O no, Thomas," she said, 
"That name does not belong to me; 
I am but the queen of fair Elfland 

That am hither come to visit thee."

"Sing and play, Thomas," she said 
"Sing and play along with me, 

And if ye dare to kiss my lips, 

Sure of your body I will be."

"Betide me weal, betide me woe, 

That fate shall never frighten me." 

And he has kissed her rosy lips, 

All under the Eildon Tree.

"Now ye must go with me," she said,

"True Thomas, ye must go with me, 

And ye must serve me seven years, 

  Through weal and woe, as chance may be."

She mounted on her milk-white steed, 

She's taken True Thomas up behind, 

And every time her bridle rung 

The steed flew faster than the wind.

O they rode on, and farther on, 

The steed went swifter than the wind; 

Until they reached a desert wide,

And living land was left behind.

"Lie down, lie down now, True Thomas, 

And rest your head upon my knee; 

Abide and rest a little space, 

And I will show you wonders three."

"O see ye not yon narrow road, 

So thick beset with thorns and briars? 

That is the path of righteousness, 

Though after it but few enquire."

"And see ye not that broad, broad road 

That lies across the lily leven? 

That is the path of wickedness, 

 Though some call it the road to heaven."

"And see ye not that lovely road, 

That winds about the fern'd hillside? 

That is the road to fair Elfland, 

 Where thou and I this night must ride."

"But Thomas, you must hold your tongue, 

Whatever you might hear or see, 
For if you speak in fair Elfland, 

You'll never get back to your own country."

Soon they came to a garden green, 

And she pulled an apple from a tree; 

"Take this for thy wages, True Thomas, 

 It will give ye the tongue than can never lie."

"My tongue is my own," True Thomas said, 

"A goodly gift ye would give to me! 

I'd neither dare to buy or sell, 

At fair or tryst where I may be."

"I dare neither speak to prince or lord 
Or ask favor from fair lady -" 
"Now hold thy peace," the Lady said,

"For as I say, so must it be!"

He has gotten a coat of velvet cloth,

And a pair of shoes of velvet green,
And till seven years were gone and past

True Thomas on earth was never seen.
___

Scottish myths 6
Scottish myths 4

Retelling © Mirino. Sources- Scotland Myths and Legends (Beryl Beare) and Cowdenknowes, with many thanks. Top image- Eildon Hills with standing stone by Walter Baxter (Wikimedia Commons) with grateful thanks. July, 2011

Facelessness..



In today's world, freedom of expression also seems to mean freedom
to deceive and ensnare. Sadly we have become conditioned to ignore 'confirmation guarantied by a huissier de justice that we have won a million'. As if it were perfectly normal, we no longer respond to telephone calls or reply to numbers that raise suspicion. We ignore the cheques that await to be claimed. It's the phenomena of 'the boy who cried wolf', and today there are more wolves than ever. Each day we purge our computers of unwanted e-mail publicity that include the dreary, daily loads of special, 'personal' discount offers. Senders of trash mail sent via our anonymous e-mail addresses that we previously thought 'safely impersonal', succeed in obtaining our real names, and by using them, encroach on our privacy even more.

In such a world, Facebook naturally enjoys its popularity. On it's 'face-value', technically and in principle, there's no reason to distrust it. In using Facebook however, what we have to implicitly trust is our own judgement.

The dangerous illusion of Facebook, is the facility with which one can gain 'friends', a bit like collecting Pokemon cards, as kids used to do.
A list virtually as long as one wishes, of names or nicknames of people one doesn't know from Adam. They could represent the complete spectrum of humanity, from good, indifferent, to evil. For all one knows one could be in contact with a serial-killer or an ecclesiastical pedofil. This is certainly a good enough reason, especially for the young, never to respond to offers of friendship from unknown people. Enough criminal cases that originated from 'Facebook friendships', have already come to light to sound the alarm bell.

Although Facebook is making efforts to ensure more security and privacy, the danger still remains, that in over denuding oneself and giving away personal information, one allows oneself to become more vulnerable. Manifestly this is particularly risky for young users of Facebook.
A few might even believe that Facebook is a quick way of getting a 'face' - a personality. If so it might suggest a serious lack of self-confidence, and an overestimation of the powers of the computer; as if the experience of actually living, learning and developing has lessened in value and importance thanks to the ever increasing magic of electronic communication and information access. In fact such a naive idea could contribute in creating the inverse effect.

The computer certainly is a fabulous means of communication, and an open access to an inexhaustible supply of information. It saves us a great deal of time, but is obviously, totally subservient to us. It responds to our commands which depend on our individual tastes, aims, ambitions, judgements and requirements.

For private sector professionals, Facebook can be a very useful means of promotion, providing it's used professionally- with the right amount of retenue.

In one's élan to promote oneself and/or one's service or art, one might be tempted to go too far, publicly confiding too much in one's increasing list of 'friends' or 'fans'. The first question should be, how many of these fans would engage themselves seriously to clearly show their sincere support and appreciation?

Before virtually exposing oneself in all respects, surely it would be wiser to first test the sincerity of such 'fans'. In any case one should avoid being over-generous with artistic work, photographs, sounds and images that could easily be downloaded and used, not in support of, or homage to, the author, but for the use and gain of cyber pirates.

Perhaps one should also refrain from exhibiting personal relationships, including those of the family. After all, such relationships are not public property, but by making public shows of them, one is virtually endorsing them as such. And once more, it consists of personal, thus exploitable information.

Regarding just, international causes for freedom, we have seen how Facebook has already proved to have an enormous impact. It has become an invaluable and major means of communication for the oppressed peoples of the world, ('Syrian Revolution 2011' is a good example). It has contributed very positively towards the Arab Spring
in general.
Facebook could be regarded as the world's meeting place. An international point of cultural exchange. Ideally this is a wonderful concept, but we should temper ideals with the realities of our epoch.

Needless to add, sincere, personal sentiments and the practice of veritable charity never need public display. Obviously such sentiments and acts of good-will should never be expressed or carried out for self-promotional interests. Such attempts would tend to cancel themselves out in any case.

Those of us already well endowed with a 'face', might sometimes even prefer to avoid mirrors; whereas the undeterred owners of 'profiles' who persist in overexposing themselves, risk ending up by being relatively faceless..
___

Opinion and Image conception/montage (with apologies to the Gioconda, Leonardo da Vinci 
and Facebook. With thanks to Wikimedia Commons) © Mirino. July, 2011

The Windmills

 


















I wander'd lonely as a clown,
A goat on Pyreneesian hills,
When all at once I saw full blown,
A host, of old, Spanish windmills;
Beside a fort with scattered trees,
 Their ghost sails turning in the breeze.

Continuous as an army line
Marching towards the castled foe,
Of whom there was hardly any sign
Upon the battlements or below.

A milling force, intrepid throng
   With whirling sails, ten thousand strong.

The knights within were far less mad
Than he who charged courageously :
A poet could not but be sad
In such picayune company !
 I gazed - and gazed - whilst hard I thought
 How such a battle could be fought.

And oft' when in my bath I lie
In usual dazed and addled state,
They turn within my inner eye
That's wont to be a mad-man's fate;
  And then my mind with this dream fills 
 And marches with the old windmills.

__

As Wordworth's Daffodils is probably the best known and loved of his poems, (with all due thanks also to his sister) it hardly deserves a parody. Yet there's nothing, including sanity, that's sacred these days..

More worthless words
__

Parody and drawing © Mirino. July, 2011

Loch Lomond



La lumière d'un instant céléste,
La sombre profondeur d'un Lac,
Une silhouette d'une montagne
Erigée, sculptée, patinée sans fin
A travers la nuit de temps..

Cherished by all Scots throughout the world. This beautiful, heart-lifting song has become the eternal call to the homeland of the Highlands.
It's said that during the second Stuart rising of 1745, two Scottish soldiers were taken prisoner at Carlisle. One of the soldiers was to be set free and the other was to be executed. The 'low road' is the spiritual road after death. He who takes the 'low road' will reach Loch Lomond before his companion, who takes the terrestrial high road across the Cheviot hills.

By yon bonnie banks and by yon bonnie braes°          °hillsides
Where the sun shines bright on Loch Lomond
Where me and my true love were ever wont to gae
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o’ Loch Lomon'.

Chorus-

O ye’ll tak’ the high road, and I'll tak' the low road
And I’ll be in Scotland afore ye
For me and my true love will ne-er meet again
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o’ Loch Lomon'.

‘Twas there that we parted in yon shady glen
On the steep, steep side o’ Ben Lomon'
Where in soft purple hue, the Hielan hills we view
And the moon comin’ out in the gloamin’.°                    °twilight

Chorus

The wee birdies sing and the wild flowers spring
And in sunshine the waters are sleeping
But the broken heart, it kens nae second spring again
Tho’ the waeful° may cease frae their greetin'.               °woeful

Chorus

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There is another, less romantic interpretation of the origin of the song to be found here
 

Intro text and photograph © Mirino. Source- A Book of Scotland, (Collins) with thanks. 
July, 2011

Reflets..



Reflections of time, in all regards. Le miroir du ciel et de la vie.
Images constantly, kaleidoscopically metamorphosing.


According to one's appreciation of this phenomenon, the artist can always try to imagine such images, allowing, for example, water-colour to express itself to obtain an effective and beautiful result. But can one conceive such extraordinary effects created by the elements of nature herself? Can one recapture that unique Venetian luminosity, for example? And why even try?



Why try to otherwise reproduce such marvellous work accomplished perfectly by the phenomena of nature?



The camera is a means of expression like any other. Obviously capturing the desired image takes a lot less time than trying to render anything like it with any other media, but in all cases one should have a reasonable idea of the results one wishes to obtain.


With photography it's necessary to foresee this even more. To anticipate the kind of light, where to be, at what angle to position oneself, and how far to zoom in at a certain moment or during a certain event, to know one's camera in order to be certain of the framed result.



To compose with care and then wait for that precise, anticipated instant. It's also the reflection of one's way of seeing. A certain regard, a certain reflet, just as magic. A personal sentiment determining a personal expression. The reflections of time, in all regards.


Text and images © Mirino (PW) Photos from 'Reflets', a selection of work actually on exhibit. July, 2011

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Courrier du soir



Lorsque je suis en Italie, comme c'est le cas en ce moment écrivant à la main ces premières lignes, (à Limone, grâce à la gentillesse de 'notre avocat préféré') j'ai l'habitude de lire le journal. Normalement je ne les lis jamais, mais en Italie, en vacances, j'achète le Corriere della Sera tous les jours. C'est aussi pour essayer d'améliorer mon italien.
(Je n'essaie pas trop de décoder les articles politiques italiens car ils me semblent souvent trop compliqués..).

Hier le 6 juillet, par exemple, on apprend que la police syrienne tire sur ceux qui osent filmer, même avec leur portable. Comment voulez vous qu'Assad fasse les réformes souhaitées, celles qui pourraient même un jour mener à la vraie démocratie syrienne, s'il y a de tels 'saboteurs' partout qui dépassent les bornes en filmant ce qui se passe pour que le monde sache l'abjecte vérité?..

Il y avait aussi un article sur les 'Black bloc' (-heads). Ceux qui manifestent sans rime ou raison contre le projet du TGV entre l'Italie et la France. Plutôt un prétexte pour faire valoir la violence. C'est vrai que les valeurs défendues pendent mai 68 semblent avoir été inversée. C'est bien la force de l'ordre européenne aujourd'hui qui défend la démocratie contre ceux qui veulent la détruire.

Lundi, 4 juillet il y avait un article écrit par BHL sur DSK.
On ne peut qu'être tout à fait d'accord avec il filosofo francese, mais avec une nuance de réservation. Nous connaissons bien les américains. DSK les connaît bien aussi. C'était lui le premier à savoir la gravité de sa situation. Il savait sans doute qu'il avait été piégé même avant de quitter l'hôtel pour essayer de prendre son avion au plus vite. Il savait aussi bien que tomber dans un tel piège aux Etats Unis risque d'être fatal pour lui. Bien avant BHL, il savait qu'il pourrait être victime d'un lynchage.

On peut faire des allusions aux méthodes robespierriennes, des comparaissons avec le cas Dreyfus. L'affaire serait forcément un classique, celui du combat entre les riches puissants et arrogants qui pensent pouvoir tout faire avec impunité, et ceux qui sont les pauvres, les opprimées, les abusées- et musulmanes par dessus le marché.
(Le fait que la victime présumée possède une demi-douzaine de portables, appartient à une organisation criminelle, et est en plus une menteuse, ne changent rien pour beaucoup de bien pensants, y compris son avocat).
Le scénario était déjà établi comme tel, trop beau pour être gâché par ces 'détails' imprévus. C'est vrai que tous les ingrédients y étaient. Il y en avait de quoi pour inspirer un Shakespeare de notre époque, et pour faire le film hit de l'année. La DSK affaire.

Mais BHL a omit de faire une allusion à l'essentiel, le plus évident. Ce qui est impardonnable pour une personnalité qui aurait pu être le meilleur choix parmi des candidats des présidentielles pour l'opposition française, n'est point l'accusation de viol en soit. Ce qui est inexcusable c'est tout simplement de se laisser faire ainsi piégé. Une personne qui se permet d'être prise aussi facilement dans un pays noté pour être loin de tendre avec de tels accusés de tels crimes, ne peut jamais prétendre avoir des qualités présidentielles.
Si certains membres de l'opposition française font semblant de croire le contraire, qu'une fois libéré il n'y a aucune raison pourquoi DSK ne peut toujours pas être candidat, ils sont aussi malhonnêtes qu'irresponsables.

D'ailleurs DSK sait pertinemment bien lui-même qu'une telle démanche de sa part après tout, serait indigne et grossière. Sur l'autre côté celui qui a fait un tel voyage aller-retour à l'enfer aurait pu avoir appris assez d'humilité pour devenir mieux en tous cas, qu'il n'avait jamais été auparavant.

Mais voilà que le lendemain après avoir écrit ces dernières lignes, je trouve un autre article du Corriere della Sera sur DSK (5 juillet). Car la jeune journaliste française, Tristane Banon dont la mère l'avait dissuadée de porter plainte contre DSK pour tentative de viol, (février 2003) a décidé quand même et après tout de procéder à l'attaquer. Son motif : elle ne peut pas supporter l'idée de voir DSK libéré et en train de manger avec des amis dans un restaurant de luxe...

Décidément la vérité a plusieurs facettes.
(En tous cas même libéré, c'est certain que DSK ne se présentera pas comme candidat pour les présidentielles de 2012. Il parait qu'il l'avait déjà confirmé à Martine Aubry le dimanche, 3 juillet).

Le 7 juillet- la saga de Rebekah Wade Brooks, ou comment on doit abandonner totalement le moral pour devenir reine de la nullité.  
La bellezza del mondo.
Mais au moins le scandale a eu un effet très déterminant. Le roi des tabloïds britanniques, News of the World a été decapité. C'est fini. (Corriere della Sera, vendredi 8 Juillet). Ce n'était pas trop tôt.
(Mais Stafford Sommerfield s'est trompé royalement. Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding ont toujours eu un meilleur goût, même cuit à l'anglaise, que News of the World ).
Rupert Murdoch n'est pas encore sorti de la... boue. Il risque de perdre des grands contrats de publicité. Il semble qu'il ait déjà perdu Renault.

Puis pour finir la semaine, Trichet, président de la BCE, a encore augmenté les taux d'intérêt. C'est peut-être bien pour l'Allemagne, c'est certainement bien pour les riches européens. Pas bien pour les moins riches, et un poids inutile de plus pour les pays européens déjà trop endettés. L'augmentation ne changera pas grand chose en ce qui concerne l'inflation, mais elle va peser négativement encore sur la bourse, et surtout sur les pays qui comptent sur leurs exportations hors de la zone euro, quand la monnaie unique était déjà surévaluée.  
___

Text and image (a corner of Limone) © Mirino. Info- Corriere della Sera, with thanks. 
July, 2011

Time



Each word written, and here a pause, represents at least a second. This sentence, about fifteen seconds. It's spent time, not necessarily lost, but irretrievable. The reader, having now read these three lines, has also spent his or her time, grains of sand that silently flow from the globe of a life span. The globe of the future and the present, into the globe of the past. There the grains of sand represent all that we have learnt, our actions, experiences, thoughts and sentiments. Memories of life's trials and adventures, hardships and achievements. Ambitions, aspirations, failures and delusions. They can also represent words, pictures, mediocre accomplishments or monumental feats. And sometimes
chef d'œuvres. Only the latter can defy the rigours of time, at least for as long as time grants existence to civilisation.

One invariably returns to this fascinating (timeless) theme, especially when one hasn't much conception of it. My mother once said, 'It's strange but I still feel as though I were 35 years old'. She was already in her eighties at the time. If time allows us the good fortune, we understand perfectly what she meant, this feeling of elation, the love of life, and perhaps the comfortable accordance with Picasso, who once said, 'it takes time to be young'.

Yet time is a paradox. He is as kind as he is cruel. He gives and takes. He allows the shedding of brilliant light and the casting of dark shadow. Without judgement or discrimination he allocates his generosity just as much to good as to evil.

Kindly, he allows one to develop, to wake up to past errors, to study, perhaps to eventually learn the merits of humility, and to begin to understand the meaning of life. Unkindly he also accords the same privilege of development to disease and illness.
When the brain, often too preoccupied by time, becomes time's victim, he can be mercifully expedient. But just as often, he can be ruthlessly cruel.
In the latter case one has to be incredibly strong to retain, in a protected corner of one's mind and being, a vestige of that force of character, the ultimate essence of oneself, with the love that one has lived for, right up until the very end.

Somewhere in time, a windy summer's day, an English beach on the east coast; after swimming at high tide, her brother is shocked to discover that he has lost the keys of his car. He is certain that he had them in a small pocket of his swimming trunks.
Time passes. The sun casts longer shadows, and the ebbed tide has left a wide, glistening expanse of smooth, wet sand.
She asks him whereabouts he was swimming. Everyone laughs. She insists. Her brother impatiently shrugs and indicates roughly where he believes he was. She slowly walks down towards the sea in the indicated direction. No one pays any attention. They are shaking the sand from beach towels and preparing to leave. She looks about her as if she is judging distances. She walks back a little way, then again she looks slightly to her right and left. She suddenly fixes a point about a couple of yards from where she's standing. She crouches down and starts to dig a little hole in the wet sand with her fingers. Incredibly, but in her case, naturally, she finds the keys.

Right up until the very end. The protected corner that commands the will to choose how to live and how to die. That magic power of will capable of accomplishing miracles, and finally dictating to, and smiling at Time...
___


(Time for a short vacation, just for a week. Let me also take this occasion to thank the growing number of readers for their interest in Viewfinder).

Text and image © Mirino, July, 2011