Sentient in Seattle – 9 August 2018

Remembering a Writer on the Date of His Death – Died 9 August 1978 – James Gould Cozzens, an American novelist, short story writer, and recipient of the Pulitzer Prize.

Some quotes from the work of James Gould Cozzens:

“In the present, every day is a miracle.”
“A cynic is just a man who found out when he was about ten that there wasn’t any Santa Claus, and he’s still upset. Yes, there’ll be more war ; and soon, I don’t doubt. There always has been. There’ll be deaths and disappointments and failures. When they come, you meet them.”
“There never could be a man so brave that he would not sometime, or in the end, turn part or all coward; or so wise that he was not, from beginning to end, part ass if you knew where to look; or so good that nothing at all about him was despicable.”
“The innocent supposition, entertained by most people, that even if they are not brilliant, they are not dumb, is correct only in a very relative sense.”
“Bailey might not have great intelligence or abilities, but his whole aim, thought and study was that of the born leader–to look out for himself; and he did it with that born-leader’s confidence and intensity that draws along the ordinary uncertain man, who soon confuses his own interest and his own safety with that of the leader.”

Art for Summer – Part I of III: Georges Lambert (French, 1919-1998)

Below – “Sunflowers”; “Les Iris”: “The Harbor”

For Your Information: 9 August is the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples.

Art for Summer – Part II of III: Christian Riese Lassen (American, contemporary)

Below – “Sanctuary”; “Star Gazers with Diamonds”; “Infinite Way”

Remembering a Writer on the Date of His Birth: Born 9 August 1922 – Philip Larkin, an English poet and novelist.

by Philip Larkin

I work all day, and get half-drunk at night.
Waking at four to soundless dark, I stare.
In time the curtain-edges will grow light.
Till then I see what’s really always there:
Unresting death, a whole day nearer now,
Making all thought impossible but how
And where and when I shall myself die.
Arid interrogation: yet the dread
Of dying, and being dead,
Flashes afresh to hold and horrify.

The mind blanks at the glare. Not in remorse
—The good not done, the love not given, time
Torn off unused—nor wretchedly because
An only life can take so long to climb
Clear of its wrong beginnings, and may never;
But at the total emptiness for ever,
The sure extinction that we travel to
And shall be lost in always. Not to be here,
Not to be anywhere,
And soon; nothing more terrible, nothing more true.

This is a special way of being afraid
No trick dispels. Religion used to try,
That vast moth-eaten musical brocade
Created to pretend we never die,
And specious stuff that says ‘No rational being
Can fear a thing it will not feel,’ not seeing
That this is what we fear—no sight, no sound,
No touch or taste or smell, nothing to think with,
Nothing to love or link with,
The anaesthetic from which none come round.

And so it stays just on the edge of vision,
A small unfocused blur, a standing chill
That slows each impulse down to indecision.
Most things may never happen: this one will,
And realisation of it rages out
In furnace-fear when we are caught without
People or drink. Courage is no good:
It means not scaring others. Being brave
Lets no one off the grave.
Death is no different whined at than withstood.

Slowly light strengthens, and the room takes shape.
It stands plain as a wardrobe, what we know,
Have always known, know that we can’t escape,
Yet can’t accept. One side will have to go.
Meanwhile telephones crouch, getting ready to ring
In locked-up offices, and all the uncaring
Intricate rented world begins to rouse.
The sky is white as clay, with no sun.
Work has to be done.
Postmen like doctors go from house to house.

Art for Summer – Part III of III: Angelina Lavernia (French, contemporary)

Below – “Woman with Cat”; “Garden Party”; Untitled

Worth a Thousand Words: Gem Lake, Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado.

Cuban Art – Wilfredo Lam (1902-1982)

In the words of one writer, “Wilfredo Lam was born in Sagua la Grande, N Cuba. He studied in Havana and in Madrid, where he held his first one-man show in 1928. He fused Latin-American, African, and Oceanic elements with the European modern movement, as in The Jungle (1943).”

Below – “The Jungle”; “Acide Deux”; “Barcelona (With Green)”; “El Ultimo Viaje Del Buque Fantasma”; Untitled; Untitled.

Musings in Summer: Joseph Campbell

“And that Aha! that you get when you see an artwork that really hits you is, ‘I am that.’ I am the very radiance of energy that is talking to me through this painting.”

Below – Childe Hassam: “French Tea Garden”

Contemporary American Art – Hal Larsen

Artist Statement: “Rather than depicting the world in a literal way, my work is about my feelings about the world.”

Below – Untitled Mountain Landscape; “Evening Cloud”; Untitled Strata:; “Mauve Mesa”; “Red rock, turquoise”; “Navajo horse blanket.”

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