A cultural "omniblog" covering matters literary as well as theatrical, musical, historical, cinematic(al), etc.
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
Quote of the Day (The Monk Kenko, on “Longing in All Things for the Past”)
“When I sit down in quiet meditation, the one emotion hardest to fight against is a longing in all things for the past. After the others have gone to bed, I pass the time on a long autumn’s night by putting in order whatever belongings are at hand. As I tear up scraps of old correspondence I should prefer not to leave behind, I sometimes find among them samples of the calligraphy of a friend who has died, or pictures he drew for his own amusement, and I feel exactly as I did at the time. Even with letters written by friends who are still alive I try, when it has been long since we met, to remember the circumstances, the year. What a moving experience that is! It is sad to think that a man’s familiar possessions, indifferent to his death, should remain unaltered long after he is gone.”—Buddhist monk Yoshida Kenko (c. 1683-1350), from his Essays on Idleness, translated by Donald Frame, excerpted in The Art of the Personal Essay: An Anthology from the Classical Era to the Present, selected by Phillip Lopate (1994)
I'm a librarian (no, NOT a "cybrarian" or "information scientist" or any of the other trendy terms the profession has come up with), as well as a freelance writer/researcher; my political leanings are contrarian, much to the dismay of friends on the left and right, and so I will give anyone looking for my vote exactly what they deserve -- the back of my hand