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Saturday 17 December 2011

How Long?


Houses of Parliament, London, Sun Breaking Through the Fog: Claude Oscar Monet, 1904 (private collection)


In the cold night fog,


is exactly that long.

File:Claude Monet - Le Parlement, coucher de soleil.jpg
Houses of Parliament, Sunset: Claude Oscar Monet, c.1904 (Kunsthaus Zurich)


Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Ah, there it is ... thanks very much for this, and the connection to Monet's London.

Very fine, Tom.

TC said...


And thank you.

Dialogue is sweet... maybe even life-extending.

aditya said...

The first time I read this I thought that the "Beauty." had referred (only) to the post at Issa's Untidy Hut.

And now the poem turns out to be .. longer.
I wonder if this is how it was.
It is a beauty nevertheless.

TC said...

Over three years (1901-1904), Monet painted this same fog-upon-the-Houses-of-Parliament scene seventeen times.

Thinking of Hokusai's views of Mount Fuji.

Meditation, concentration.

But funny things happen in the fog.

"Baby alligators in the sewer / Grow up fast, grow up fast..."

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Ah, we are wending familiar alleys made unfamiliar in the dense mist and we find we've arrived exactly where we're meant to be.

Been thinking of you, Tom (& of course myself), while reading through a new Hermann Hesse translation entitled "Hymn to Old Age," which is absolutely gorgeous. New (to us in English) poems, extracts from letters, journals, non-fiction and fiction, wonderfully translated by a David Henry Wilson, published by Pushkin Press and yet to be available here in America, where no one ages and no one dies. Here's a blurb for the book:

Continuing on through the fog, marveling how the light seems to illumine from within ...

ACravan said...

This is really lovely. I love the idea of discerning equivalent measures among different types of experiences and objects. It's "artful" and reminds me of the piano sounds I'm hearing from the next room where Jane is trying to figure out a tune from memory. Curtis

TC said...


Those inner back-alley flashlights may not be as powerful as Magnum LEDs; still, however feeble they or us -- we are led by them.


In case it's of any use (probably not!), you might reassure Jane by telling her I'm always trying to do just that.

(On second thought, no, don't tell her, just take joy in the right/wrong notes, the tentative pauses... as I am sure you do.)



Monet painting the same scene 17 times in 3 years -- reminds me of someone I know writing the ridge each day, "eternity/ is exactly that long."

"Continuing on through the fog" as Don says, or today in the sun -- cloudless blue sky out there, and warm (at least for a while). . .


pink lines of clouds in sky above still
dark ridge, white half moon by branches
in foreground, wave sounding in channel

measure, referred to moving
however rapidly field

therefore different, we see,
symmetrical continuum

silver of low sun reflected in channel,
moon in cloudless blue sky above point

vazambam (Vassilis Zambaras) said...

Another beauty.