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A Child of Our Time: Michael Tippett

A Child of Our Time is a secular oratorio by the British composer Michael Tippett (1905–98), who also wrote the libretto. Composed between 1939 and 1941, it was first performed at the Adelphi Theatre, London, on 19 March 1944. The work was inspired by events that affected Tippett profoundly: the assassination in 1938 of a German diplomat by a young Jewish refugee, … Continue reading

Return to My Native Land: Aimé Césaire

My far distant happiness which makes me aware of my true misery: a lumpy road plunging into a hollow where it scatters a handful of huts: a tireless road charging at full speed towards a hill at whose top it is brutally drowned in a stagnant pool of dwarfish houses, a road madly climbing, recklessly … Continue reading

Ask Me by William Stafford

Some time when the river is ice ask me mistakes I have made. Ask me whether what I have done is my life. Others have come in their slow way into my thought, and some have tried to help or to hurt: ask me what difference their strongest love or hate has made. I will … Continue reading

By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept : Paulo Coelho

But he went on. “For the past two weeks, I haven’t been able to stand the sadness in my soul. I went to my superior and told him what was happening to me. I told him about my love for you and what had begun when we were taking the inventory.” A light rain began … Continue reading

Qu’est-ce que l’acte de création ? Gilles Deleuze

  Pour le philosophe Gilles Deleuze (1925-1995), l’œuvre d’art est irréductible au champ de la communication et constitue un moyen de s’opposer aux injonctions du pouvoir. Créer, c’est résister à ce qui entend contrôler nos vies. par Gilles Deleuze La communication, c’est la transmission et la propagation d’une information. Or, une information, c’est quoi? Ce n’est pas … Continue reading

Georges Bataille: The Impossible

“After all, the moment of ruin, when you don’t know if you’re going to laugh or cry, if it weren’t for the fatigue, the sensation of musty eyes and mouth, of nerves slowly worn out, has the greatest leaping power.  Later at the window (at the moment when the unpredictable light of a lightning flash … Continue reading

A dream within a dream: Edgar Allan Poe

  Take this kiss upon the brow! And, in parting from you now, Thus much let me avow — You are not wrong, who deem That my days have been a dream; Yet if hope has flown away In a night, or in a day, In a vision, or in none, Is it therefore the … Continue reading

From beyond : H. P. Lovecraft / Picasso

“What do we know,” he had said, “of the world and the universe about us? Our means of receiving impressions are absurdly few, and our notions of surrounding objects infinitely narrow. We see things only as we are constructed to see them, and can gain no idea of their absolute nature. With five feeble senses we pretend … Continue reading

Blues by Elizabeth Alexander / Jean Mannheim

I am lazy, the laziest girl in the world. I sleep during the day when I want to, ‘til my face is creased and swollen, ‘til my lips are dry and hot. I eat as I please: cookies and milk after lunch, butter and sour cream on my baked potato, foods that slothful people eat, … Continue reading

Commision: Ezra Pound / HR Bell

Go, my songs, to the lonely and the unsatisfied, Go also to the nerve-racked, go to the enslaved-by-convention, Bear to them my contempt for their oppressors. Go as a great wave of cool water, Bear my contempt of oppressors. Speak against unconscious oppression, Speak against the tyranny of the unimaginative, Speak against bonds. Go to … Continue reading

L’esprit des Lumières: Tzvetan Todorov/ Kristian Krokfors

Après la fin des utopies, sur quel socle intellectuel et moral pouvons-nous bâtir notre vie commune? Pour Tzvetan Todorov, il n’y en a qu’un : le versant humaniste des Lumières. Ce petit essai majeur ne se contente pas de dégager dans une synthèse limpide les grandes lignes de ce courant de pensée : il le … Continue reading

Je me souviens : Georges Perec / Simon Quadrat

1 Je me souviens des dîners à la grande table de la boulangerie. Soupe au lait l’hiver, soupe au vin l’été. 2 Je me souviens du cadeau Bonux disputé avec ma soeur dès qu’un nouveau paquet était acheté. 3 Je me souviens des bananes coupées en trois. Nous étions trois. 4 Je me souviens de … Continue reading

Wandering: Farmhouse – Hermann Hesse

I am making a sketch of the house in my notebook, and my eye sadly leaves the German roof, the German frame of the house, the gables, everything I love, every familiar thing. Once again I love deeply everything at home, because I have to leave it. Tomorrow I will love other roofs, other cottages. … Continue reading

Non ho smesso di pensarti: Charles Bukowski / Fan Ho

Non ho smesso di pensarti, vorrei tanto dirtelo. Vorrei scriverti che mi piacerebbe tornare, che mi manchi e che ti penso. Ma non ti cerco. Non ti scrivo neppure ciao. Non so come stai. E mi manca saperlo. Hai progetti? Hai sorriso oggi? Cos’hai sognato? Esci? Dove vai? Hai dei sogni? Hai mangiato? Mi piacerebbe … Continue reading

Partout où il n’y aura rien, lisez que je vous aime: Denis Diderot

IV Paris, le 10 juillet. J’écris sans voir. Je suis venu ; je voulais vous baiser la main et m’en retourner. Je m’en retournerai sans cette récompense ; mais ne serai-je pas assez récompensé si je vous ai montré combien je vous aime ? Il est neuf heures, je vous écris que je vous aime. Je veux du … Continue reading

Francis Picabia: Dada Movement

Picabia published one ofhis most revealing dadaist statements: “The painter makes a choice, then imitates his choice so that the deformation constitutes the art; the choice, why not simply sign it, in place of making like a monkey before it? Further along in this article Picabia made still more clear the purpose of his art, … Continue reading

A trifle : Erich Fried / Jürgen Wanger

A trifle for Catherine I don’t know what love is but perhaps it is something like this: When she come home from abroad and tells me proudly: “I sawa water rat”and I remember these words when I wake up in the night and next day at my work 10 and I long to hear her … Continue reading

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