Sunday, September 28, 2008

It Ain't Necessarily So

It ain't necessarily so, (repeat)
De t'ings dat yo' li'ble
To read in de Bible,
It ain't necessarily so.

Li'l David was small, but oh my! (rpt)
He fought big Goliath
Who lay down an' dieth!
Li'l David was small, but oh my!

Oh, Jonah, he lived in de whale, (rpt)
Fo' he made his home in
Dat fish's abdomen.
Oh, Jonah, he lived in de whale.

Li'l Moses was found in a stream, (rpt)
He floated on water
Till Ole Pharaoh's daughter
She fished him, she says, from that stream.

It ain't necessarily so, (rpt)
Dey tell all you chillun
De debble's a villun,
But 'tain't necessarily so.

To get into Hebben don' snap for a sebben!
Live clean! Don' have no fault.
Oh, I takes dat gospel
Whenever it's poss'ble,
But wid a grain of salt.

Methus'lah lived nine hundred years,
But who calls dat livin'
When no gal'll give in
To no man what's nine hundred years?

I'm preachin' dis sermon to show,
It ain't nessa, ain't nessa,
ain't nessa, ain't nessa,
Ain't necessarily so.
Music by George Gershwin. Lyrics by Ira Gershwin. Copyright 1935 by Gershwin Publishing Co.

Friday, September 26, 2008

"Genius is the capacity for receiving and improving by discipline."
-George Eliot

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

"Art washes from the soul the dust of everyday life."
Pablo Picasso

Friday, September 19, 2008

On women artists:

"Remember, no one can make you feel inferior without your consent." (Eleanor Roosevelt)

I shared Suzanne's letter with my painter daughter. "It seems to me, Dad," she said, "this is not a letter about the subjugation of women artists... it isn't a feminist issue... it's a self-esteem issue. Thriving as an artist--in all of its forms--our entitlement to our lives and livelihood, our imagination, our believed limitations, our expectations and dreams for our work, our professionalism, our perceived competition and, most importantly, our JOY, requires the serving of an eviction notice to the voice of doubt squatting inside us."

Sara Genn is at sara@saraphina.com


Friday, September 12, 2008

John Cage's "Rules for Students and Teachers."
Here they are:

1 Find a place you trust, and then try trusting it for awhile.
2 General duties of a student--pull everything out of your teacher; pull everything out of your fellow students.
3 General duties of a teacher--pull everything out of your students.
4 Consider everything an experiment.
5 Be self-disciplined--this means finding someone wise or smart and choosing to follow them. To be disciplined is to follow in a good way. To be self-disciplined is to follow in a better way.
6 Nothing is a mistake. There's no win and no fail, there's only make.
7 The only rule is work. If you work it will lead to something. It's the people who do all of the work all of the time who eventually catch on to things.
8 Don't try to create and analyze at the same time. They're different processes.
9 Be happy whenever you can manage it. Enjoy yourself. It's lighter than you think.
10 Break rules. Even your own rules. Leave plenty of room for X quantities.

John Cage (1912-1992) was a composer, print maker, performance artist, writer, philosopher, editor, teacher, mushroom expert, collaborator and poet. Fact is, John Cage had a lot of fun in his factory. Considered one of the most influential composers of the twentieth century, he produced works with one note, no notes, notes by chance, and a noted organ composition that takes 639 years to play.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Mark Twain ~ "Dying man couldn't make up his mind which place to go to -- both have their advantages, 'heaven for climate, hell for company!'"

Isaac Asimov ~ "For whatever the tortures of hell, I think the boredom of heaven would be even worse."

Friday, September 05, 2008

But I'll tell you what hermits realize. If you go off into a far, far forest and get very quiet, you'll come to understand that you're connected with everything.
~ Alan Watts

Monday, September 01, 2008

Heidegger from his 1927-1928
lectures on Kant's Critique of Pure Reason

"Philosophy belongs to the most original of human endeavors...It is
precisely these original human endeavors that have their constancy in
never losing their questionable character and in thus returning to
the same point and finding there their sole source of energy. The
constancy of these endeavors does not consist in the continued
regularity of advancing, in the sense of a so-called progress.
Progress exists only in the realm of what is ultimately unimportant
for human existence. Philosophy does not evolve in the sense of
progress. Rather, philosophy is an attempt at developing and
clarifying the same few problems; philosophy is the independent,
free, and thoroughgoing struggle of human existence with the darkness
that can break out at any time in that existence. And every
clarification opens new abysses. Thus the stagnation and decline of
philosophy do not mean not-going-forward-anymore; rather they point
to having forgotten the center. Therefore every philosophical renewal
is an awakening in returning to the same point."

"Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure... life
is either a daring adventure or nothing." - Helen Keller

"Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the
day to find that all was vanity, but the dreamers of the day are dangerous
men for they may act their dream with open eyes and make it possible."

- T.E. Lawrence

"To be yourself in a world that tries, night and day, to make you JUST like
everybody else is to fight the greatest battle ever fought. To fight, and
NEVER stop fighting."? e.e. cummings


Why I Do Not Fear Death

To me, the dozen billion years
(a time scale we can't comprehend)
that passed before my day of birth
give comfort for the coming end.
To know that not one atom in
my body at the age of five
remains within me still today
changes the meaning of "alive."
And all the billions yet to pass
after my carcass has decayed
are bookends for a single life
so precious, by their vastness, made.

-Tim O'Neill

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