Sui ponti di Roma gli amanti la notte si dicono la verità e parlano e piangono piangono e toccano e intanto c’è l’acqua che va E poi quando li prende il mattino si perdono per la città e riempiono tutte le strade che a Roma gli amanti son tanti si sa… —Gianmaria Testa, “Gli amanti di Roma”
[On the bridges of Rome, lovers at night speak the truth to each other. They speak and weep, weep and touch, and meanwhile the water goes by. And when morning takes them, they scatter through the city and fill all the streets, for in Rome, lovers are so numerous, you know…]
A truth ceases to be true when more than one person believes in it. —Oscar Wilde, who explained the aphorism thus: “That would be my metaphysical definition of truth; something so personal that the same truth could never be appreciated by two minds.”
Time flows in one direction; it is impossible to undo or even to alter an action after it has occurred and become an “event,” an objective fact. However, even though the past is fixed, repentance allows one to rise above it, to change its significance for the present and the future… It is the potential for something else. —Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz
Iamque rubescebat stellis Aurora fugatis cum procul obscuros collis humilemque uidemus Italiam. Italiam primus conclamat Achates, Italiam laeto socii clamore salutant. —P. Vergilii Maronis, Aeneidos III
vilaine fille and her alter ego have had a rough few months, with a back injury, a cluster of related ailments, and an important life transition. The back injury is healing, and the transition is underway. I’m about to embark on a trip to the land of my heart, where I plan to breathe, walk, read, work on a writing project (which has nothing to do with music), connect with friends old and new(anche Bob, spero!), and drink in the incomparable beauty of the land, language, culture, and people.
I feel miserable about having neglected you, gentle readers. I hope to make it up to you when things are less unsettled.
There has been one abiding joy of late: Seeing my g-dchild Angela blossom. At left you see her about six weeks ago. Isn’t she gorgeous?Check out those Bibendum arms!
vilaine fille may or may not post over the next month, depending on the availability of an Internet connection. She encourages you to visit her beloved vilaines filles and mauvais garçons. I have set up pensées du dimanche and occasional almanac-style postings to keep you amused.
In coming weeks, please look for my Time Out New York review of the sublime new Arvo Pärt CD, my Newsday Fast Chat with Anthony Minghella, and my TONY feature on Marcello Giordani.
Finally, Leshanah tovah tikatevu vetehatemu. May you and yours enjoy all blessings of health, happiness, love, and success in 5767.
But the expression of a well-made man appears not only in his face It is in his limbs and joints also, it is curiously in the joints of his hips and wrists It is in his walk, the carriage of his neck, the flex of his waist and knees—dress does not hide him The strong, sweet, supple quality he has, strikes through the cotton and flannel To see him pass conveys as much as the best poem, perhaps more You linger to see his back, and the back of his neck and shoulder-side…
The march of firemen in their own costumes, the play of masculine muscle through clean-setting trowsers and waist-straps The slow return from the fire, the pause when the bell strikes suddenly again, and the listening on the alert, The natural, perfect, varied attitudes—the bent head, the curv’d neck, and the counting… Swim with the swimmers, wrestle with wrestlers, march in line with the firemen, and pause, listen, and count. —Walt Whitman, “I Sing the Body Electric”
The gusts of Elul have the power to counter the winds of war. So open your window, breathe the fresh air, smell the flowers and feel the hopeful breeze waft through your life. —Rabbi Simon Jacobson, “Elul Whispers”