Sentient in San Francisco – 8 June 2020

This Date in Art History: Born 8 June 1829 – John Everett Millais, an English painter, illustrator, and one of the founders of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.

Below – “Ophelia”; “Mariana”; “Chill October”; “Autumn Leaves”; “Apple Blossoms”; “The Vale of Rest.”

This Date in Literary History: Died 8 June 1889 – Gerard Manley Hopkins, an English poet.

“Spring and Fall”
by Gerard Manley Hopkins

Márgarét, áre you gríeving
Over Goldengrove unleaving?
Leáves like the things of man, you
With your fresh thoughts care for, can you?
Ah! ás the heart grows older
It will come to such sights colder
By and by, nor spare a sigh
Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie;
And yet you wíll weep and know why.
Now no matter, child, the name:
Sórrow’s spríngs áre the same.
Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressed
What heart heard of, ghost guessed:
It ís the blight man was born for,
It is Margaret you mourn for.


This Date in Art History: Born 8 June. 1872 – Jan Frans De Boever, a Belgian painter and illustrator.

Below – “Trois jeunes femmes attendant dans un salon”; “Sorciere”; “The Wheat Sheaves”; “Regerende sfinx”; “Le festin”; “Pegase.”


This Date in Intellectual/Political History: Died 8 June 1809 – Thomas Paine, an English-born political activist, philosopher, political theorist, evolutionary, and author of “The Age of Reason.”

Some quotes from the work of Thomas Paine:

“To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.”
“A body of men holding themselves accountable to nobody ought not to be trusted by anybody.”
“The greatest tyrannies are always perpetuated in the name of the noblest causes.”
“It is the duty of every man, as far as his ability extends, to detect and expose delusion and error.”
“Men who look upon themselves born to reign, and others to obey, soon grow insolent; selected from the rest of mankind their minds are early poisoned by importance; and the world they act in differs so materially from the world at large, that they have but little opportunity of knowing its true interests, and when they succeed to the government are frequently the most ignorant and unfit of any throughout the dominions.”
“All churches, whether Jewish, Christian or Muslim, are simply human inventions. They use fear to enslave us. They are a monopoly for power and profit.”
“The trade of governing has always been monopolized by the most ignorant and the most rascally individuals of mankind.”
“If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace.”
“It is error only, and not truth, that shrinks from inquiry.”
“These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands it NOW, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.”
“The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly; it is dearness only that gives everything its value. I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow brave by reflection. ‘Tis the business of little minds to shrink; but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death.”
“The World is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion.”


This Date in Art History: Died 8 June 1956 – Marie Laurencin, a French painter and printmaker.

Below – “Woman Holding White Fan”; “Young Girls”; “reunion a la campagne”; “Ophelie”; ‘Juilette”; “The Two Friends.”

A Poem for Today

“Honeysuckle”
by Karla Morton

It sprang up wild along the chain link fence—thick,
with glorious white
and yellow summer blooms, and green tips that we
pinched and pulled for one

perfect drop of gold honey. But Dad hated
it—hated its lack
of rows and containment, its disorder. Each
year, he dug, bulldozed,

and set fire to those determined vines. But each
year, they just grew back
stronger. Maybe that’s why I felt the urge to
plant it that one day
in May, when cancer stepped onto my front porch
and rang the doorbell,

loose matches spilling out of its ugly fists.

Contemporary Russian Art – Alina Vlastovskaya

Below – “ara araruna”; “palawan pheasant”; “bora bora”; “the tanzanian foundation”; “dreams of Santorini”; “sail away.”

A Poem for Today

“Death of a Dog”
by Ted Kooser

The next morning I felt that our house
had been lifted away from its foundation
during the night, and was now adrift,
though so heavy it drew a foot or more
of whatever was buoying it up, not water
but something cold and thin and clear,
silence riffling its surface as the house
began to turn on a strengthening current,
leaving, taking my wife and me with it,
and though it had never occurred
to me until that moment, for fifteen years
our dog had held down what we had
by pressing his belly to the floors,
his front paws, too, and with him gone
the house had begun to float out onto
emptiness, no solid ground in sight.

Below – My much-loved and much-missed Sarah.

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