Friday, July 24

Toasting Ghosts and other simple pleasures

iam reading thru the HalfPastHuman latest book of the Bardo that we seem to be approaching. Go there. Buy it. Read it. Come back. We can chat. i'll wait.

or, if not, before you go...

i've got a bottle of Laphroaig here that's mostly full. join me for a glass. it's my toasting the dead bottle. i'd be honored if you'd care to share it with me.

i've always thought this guy had a real way with
simple words and simple rhymes that say things
that aren't near as simple as they may seem.
who knows...we might yet waken from this fey dream.


Asatoma satgamaya
Tamasoma jyotir gamaya
Mrityorma amritamgamaya

Lead us from the unreal to the real.
Lead us from the darkness to the light.
Lead us from mortality to immortality.

Thank you Billy.

Auguries of Innocence
William Blake

To see a world in a grain of sand
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour.
A robin redbreast in a cage
Puts all heaven in a rage.
A dove-house filled with doves and pigeons
Shudders hell through all its regions.
A dog starved at his master's gate
Predicts the ruin of the state.
A horse misused upon the road
Calls to heaven for human blood.
Each outcry of the hunted hare
A fibre from the brain does tear.
A skylark wounded in the wing,
A cherubim does cease to sing.
The game-cock clipped and armed for fight
Does the rising sun affright.
Every wolf's and lion's howl
Raises from hell a human soul.
The wild deer wandering here and there
Keeps the human soul from care.
The lamb misused breeds public strife,
And yet forgives the butcher's knife.
The bat that flits at close of eve
Has left the brain that won't believe.
The owl that calls upon the night
Speaks the unbeliever's fright.
He who shall hurt the little wren
Shall never be beloved by men.
He who the ox to wrath has moved
Shall never be by woman loved.
The wanton boy that kills the fly
Shall feel the spider's enmity.
He who torments the chafer's sprite
Weaves a bower in endless night.
The caterpillar on the leaf
Repeats to thee thy mother's grief.
Kill not the moth nor butterfly,
For the Last Judgment draweth nigh.
He who shall train the horse to war
Shall never pass the polar bar.
The beggar's dog and widow's cat,
Feed them, and thou wilt grow fat.
The gnat that sings his summer's song
Poison gets from Slander's tongue.
The poison of the snake and newt
Is the sweat of Envy's foot.
The poison of the honey-bee
Is the artist's jealousy.
The prince's robes and beggar's rags
Are toadstools on the miser's bags.
A truth that's told with bad intent
Beats all the lies you can invent.
It is right it should be so:
Man was made for joy and woe;
And when this we rightly know
Through the world we safely go.
Joy and woe are woven fine,
A clothing for the soul divine.
Under every grief and pine
Runs a joy with silken twine.
The babe is more than swaddling bands,
Throughout all these human lands;
Tools were made and born were hands,
Every farmer understands.
Every tear from every eye
Becomes a babe in eternity;
This is caught by females bright
And returned to its own delight.
The bleat, the bark, bellow, and roar
Are waves that beat on heaven's shore.
The babe that weeps the rod beneath
Writes Revenge! in realms of death.
The beggar's rags fluttering in air
Does to rags the heavens tear.
The soldier armed with sword and gun
Palsied strikes the summer's sun.
The poor man's farthing is worth more
Than all the gold on Afric's shore.
One mite wrung from the labourer's hands
Shall buy and sell the miser's lands,
Or if protected from on high
Does that whole nation sell and buy.
He who mocks the infant's faith
Shall be mocked in age and death.
He who shall teach the child to doubt
The rotting grave shall ne'er get out.
He who respects the infant's faith
Triumphs over hell and death.
The child's toys and the old man's reasons
Are the fruits of the two seasons.
The questioner who sits so sly
Shall never know how to reply.
He who replies to words of doubt
Doth put the light of knowledge out.
The strongest poison ever known
Came from Caesar's laurel crown.
Nought can deform the human race
Like to the armour's iron brace.
When gold and gems adorn the plough
To peaceful arts shall Envy bow.
A riddle or the cricket's cry
Is to doubt a fit reply.
The emmet's inch and eagle's mile
Make lame philosophy to smile.
He who doubts from what he sees
Will ne'er believe, do what you please.
If the sun and moon should doubt,
They'd immediately go out.
To be in a passion you good may do,
But no good if a passion is in you.
The whore and gambler, by the state
Licensed, build that nation's fate.
The harlot's cry from street to street
Shall weave old England's winding sheet.
The winner's shout, the loser's curse,
Dance before dead England's hearse.
Every night and every morn
Some to misery are born.
Every morn and every night
Some are born to sweet delight.
Some are born to sweet delight,
Some are born to endless night.
We are led to believe a lie
When we see not through the eye
Which was born in a night to perish in a night,
When the soul slept in beams of light.
God appears, and God is light
To those poor souls who dwell in night,
But does a human form display
To those who dwell in realms of day.


  1. OK, OK, -- lot of meat to this one, few potatoes. (Saving 'em for the famine, are we?) Seriously, have never sampled Laphroaig and its "beautiful hollow by the broad bay" imagery and your invitation to exchange thoughts in the brief Bardo we are now in are most tempting, so long as the Laphroaig doesn't become the horrifying void of a narrow, dark night.

    Seriously, I'm considering your gauntlet you accidentally dropped (or, intentionally threw dowm, I suspect) re HPH. What a teaser that was!

    So, damn! To not procure the latest HPH edition and read it is to speak upward to a higher level of enlightenment, one from which someone looks down with glass of the mead in hand to one less enlightened, less knowing. And yet, I get itchy creepy at that thought millions of spiders can foretell the future filter thru the mind of its interpreter (as stimulating as he sounds on late night radio -- you know he feeds my cynicism!), just as a mosquito inoculates those bitten by one against malaria (but what of West Nile?).

    ~Dada -- contemplating your challenge. If I tip to the other side it will likely be the result of the chance to sip Laphroaig and contemplate less worldly, more *cosmic* realities.

  2. p.s. -- Not sure how to correct mistakes in above (I couldn't return to editor) but, no biggie, as they say "It's the thought that counts" which wasn't that mangled (save by its author).

  3. and here's a glass full of scottish finery for you friend:
    May your life be filled with what you wish and that which brings you pleasure...

    seems more like turning round, shouting over a shoulder through the rising wind in whipped rain, while filling sandbags rather than a languid mead drenched afternoon under the bhoditree.

    aren't the webbeasties similar to how you'd do it in person on a much smaller scale? say you know someone who for the past 6 or 8 months has gotten increasingly malcontented as well as more vociferous and wide-ranging in their discontent. just from what you'd overheard and seen of this person, and what mutual acquaintances have heard and said, wouldn't you have these scenarios floating in your head as to when and how (s)he was going to find that last straw?

    or it could just be a blogger on a roll... kaiser, hot peppers, mangeled provolone, hold the mayo... ten dolla, ten dolla

    i lost a glove?