Z e t e o
Reading, Looking, Listening, . . . Questioning

Five mysteries hold the keys to the unseen: the act of love, and the birth of a baby, and the contemplation of great art, and being in the presence of death or disaster, and hearing the human voice lifted in song.                                                                              […]

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  I s creation, in the arts, or elsewhere, a matter of chutzpah or daring — perhaps of overweening pride? It often is.  And sometime it’s a matter of humility, stepping aside, letting another speak through one. Thus the Odyssey begins, Sing in me muse, Sing of the man of twists and turns driven time […]

ZiR
books, reading

Fantasy has it rough. It bears a reputation of being trivial, flashy, adolescent, and entertainment-driven. Indeed, some fantasy is. But, such a judgment is unfair to good fantasy, which is none of the above. Because fantasy is so blatantly allegorical, when it is good, it reveals a forthright understanding of how reality functions. And, when it is great, it resembles myth, with […]

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  I have no complaints about living in Maine. I find good music, good restaurants, good friends in the small city of Portland. I’ve taught inland and upstate in Bangor – just this side of Old Town, home of the classic canvas canoes I grew up with and rigged for sailing in a tidal river […]

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Categories: Fritz Tucker, ZiR | Add a Comment
Power to Intrude, Illustration by Ben Jennings, Prospect Magazine, February 2016

Two weeks ago I wrote about the relationship between privacy and power, and how may of today’s spokespeople for the oppressed focus more on stopping surveillance in the name of privacy than daring to call for surveillance of oppressors, or imagine ways that surveillance could be used to create a world devoid of oppression. Since […]

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                                                       Bakhtin coined the term “carnivalesque’ to mark literary works with multiple, contrasting, and forever-competing centers of gravity. These paintings above have multiple, contrasting, and forever-competing centers of gravity. They’re done by someone new in my world, Octavio Ocampo. These images […]

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Categories: Ed Mooney, ZiR | 2 Comments

  Once upon a time, there was a wildly popular “school” of thought called “existentialism.” Ordinary educated persons read works of existential writing and attended plays by existentialist dramatists; existential themes were bandied about in pubs and cafes; even the mass media took note of the way in which existentialist philosophy had broken the boundaries […]

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Categories: Ed Mooney, ZiR | 2 Comments

                        Post-secular spirituality features:   1) posthuman ethics; 2) posthuman subjects; 3) totalistic re-positioning   I’ll read anything — almost. Once a month it’s my habit to browse stacks of journals out of my field. Looking for promising titles, I’ll glance at the first page or so to get the drift, then tag the […]

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Categories: Ed Mooney, ZiR | Add a Comment

  I returned last night from a concert that featured, among other things, two movements from Bach’s unaccompanied cello suites. By pure luck, I had been reading an essay by Edward Said on Bach’s life and work. Bach cavorts with immortality. As my exposure to the cello suites confirmed once more, Bach’s work is inexhaustible […]

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I was startled to read in yesterday’s Boston Globe that a scholarly paper on “the God particle” (the Higgs boson) had 5,154 authors. I wondered if they hired a stadium for the signing and celebration. I usually think of science as dancing with poetry. An odd couple, you’ll say, but I’ve learned from Thoreau that […]

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I’m not sure what led me to open Moby Dick again. It’s become a book to browse rather than “get through.” And when a passage pops up, one can’t be in a rush. Going slowly I can unravel serpentine sentences that so often deliver gold. Why just now? Perhaps because I’ve moved to the seacoast […]

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Categories: Essay | 1 Comment
Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

I’m not sure what led me to open Moby Dick again. It’s become a book to browse rather than “get through.” And when a passage pops up, one can’t be in a rush. Going slowly I can unravel serpentine sentences that so often deliver gold. Why just now? Perhaps because I’ve moved to the seacoast […]

Essay

June 14, 2018

The time that takes place in stories compared to the time that we actually live is radically abbreviated. It briskly sweeps aside all the commonplace moments that make up the long stretch of toilsome time and focuses instead on the interesting and compelling. With a mere section break or a simple transitional phrase, days, months, and whole years are disposed of as if they had no significance at all. “Then time passed slowly until the day arrived when….” A lot of important living is hidden in such a phrase. From the moment-to-moment flow of time, the storyteller lifts out only those narr...

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Categories: Essay | 1 Comment
Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

I’m not sure what led me to open Moby Dick again. It’s become a book to browse rather than “get through.” And when a passage pops up, one can’t be in a rush. Going slowly I can unravel serpentine sentences that so often deliver gold. Why just now? Perhaps because I’ve moved to the seacoast […]

Essay

May 11, 2018

Using personal essay, literary reference, and journalistic voice, the article plants itself on our existential doorstep while illuminating Barnes' novel one more time. Very strong. Thanks.

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Categories: Essay | 1 Comment
Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

I’m not sure what led me to open Moby Dick again. It’s become a book to browse rather than “get through.” And when a passage pops up, one can’t be in a rush. Going slowly I can unravel serpentine sentences that so often deliver gold. Why just now? Perhaps because I’ve moved to the seacoast […]

Essay

May 10, 2018

"When these new memories suddenly came upon me … time had been placed in reverse. As if, for that moment, the river ran upstream." Stolen from Barnes's book for my poem "From the Vale for a Soul Making". Great book to write about.

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