Something Worth Trying

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Classic articles about some of the the world’s most interesting people and places, all free to read online

10 articles by one of my favorite nonfictionists. High five, you’re welcome.

Turn over the loose stones
And also know
The faces of what
We are not,
What we refuse to be.
These are as just as he
Who slips eyeglasses on,
Pondering on Ben Ezra,
And she who dips her aging hands
Into the silent clouds
Of incense.

Dark and fey, but alchemic
As quicksilver
The wood nymphs run,
Those spurned when she was twelve.
And he has quite forgot,
That, past the coral reefs, a sea faun
Dangles the bait and rod.

Still, we foster
The acquiescent shape
By our rejection,
Giving voice, blood, name
To the random breath;
Love is many and truth is just,
And so we are; Both
What we choose,
And we refuse.

Afternoon of a Sea Faun, Edith L. Tiempo

Today is the 95th birth anniversary of Edith L. TiempoNational Artist for Literature.

(via malacanan)

a—-p—-r—-i—-l:

My failure to evolve has been causing me a lot of grief lately.
I can’t walk on my knuckles through the acres of shattered glass in the streets.
I get lost in the arcades. My feet stink at the soirees.
The hills have been bulldozed from whence cameth my help.
The halfway houses where I met my kind dreaming of flickering lights in the woods
are shuttered I don’t know why.
“Try,” say the good people who bring me my food,
“to make your secret anguish your secret weapon.
Otherwise, your immortality will be
an exhibit in a vitrine at the local museum, a picture in a book.”
But I can’t get the hang of it. The heavy instructions fall from my hands.
It takes so long for the human to become a human!
He affrights civilizations with his cry. At his approach,
the mountains retreat. A great wind crashes the garden party.
Manipulate singly neither his consummation nor his despair
but the two together like curettes and peel back the pitch-black integuments
to discover the penciled-in figure on the painted-over mural of time,
sitting on the sketch of a boulder below
his aching sunrise, his moody, disappointed sunset.

Because goodbye.
Because sometimes we imagine benevolence in leavetaking.
Because mostly there is none.

Because mostly the world treats earnestness as sin,
looks for trees beyond windows when often there is only city.
Here a dry rag dragged across a table.

Here a closet full of blankets only, curtains drawn,
sometimes too little light to begin with.
So much cloth keeping no one warm.

Here a room and a bed and a child sitting on a bed.
My cupped hands containing a whisper,
my pockets brimming with stars.

You keening for some hidden brightness.
Because the heart relies on wishing to keep its rhythm.
Because the task of hands is to insist on holding.

Because mostly we fail.
Because mostly we wish each other forgetfulness.
Sometimes we wish each other well.

Turnilyo para sa mga piyesa. Pati board, gawang-kamay. Regalo ng utol noong nagdaan kong kaarawan. #chess