Archive for August 11th, 2011

Helen McNicholl (1879-1915), In the Shade of the Tent (1914)

Dear friends and readers,

I’ve been meaning to tell people who come here that I’ve moved and changed my other blog and invented a third.

First, I moved my Reveries under the Sign of Austen to wordpress. This is a more appropriate space, as many blogs here have themes and are essay-like, and people can subscribe to this blog, but I moved because I became unable to cope with the constant disappearance of livejournal and the freakish working of their software as it was attacked repeatedly this summer.

So here’s an explanation why I moved it and that it is really a continuation of the old blog, with the difference I’ll try to keep on (however widely conceived) topic:

A Continuation

And two first typical blogs:

Women’s friendships and the gothic in Davies’s Northanger Abbey films

Jane Austen’s Letters: Letter 35, Tues-Wed, 5-6 May 1801, from the Paragon

The space in which my older Austen Reveries blog lived (so to speak) is now a blog meant to be personal, autobiographical, seasonal: Under the Sign of Sylvia. My gravator or icon is now Harriet Walter as Harriet Vane. I first explained my pseudonym once again: Why Sylvia. Then I wrote a new blog in the new style intended, it’s about a central breakthrough in conception about myself I had this past year:

Upon realizing I have many Aspergers traits.

I used Nell Blaine’s Cookie Shop once before on this blog in an attempt to talk about myself and my conversion experience into feminism: This long morphing life so have used a different picture to capture a summer’s day (what it is as I type this) in a mode congenial to my own, an woman impressionist unfortunately not well-known, Helen McNicholl, In the Shade of the Tent (see above): one woman is reading, the other painting; I like to think they are friends and wish the image had come out with a little less yellow.

Now this blog will be for Everything Else! and I conclude with Claire Genoux’s Saisons du corps as translated by Ellen Hinsey, New European Poets, Miller & Prufer eds.

If I had loved better
these days with their good smell of bark
these copper twilights
the mountains exposing their toothless jaws
if I had walked more upright
along trails that lead toward dawn
where faith shelters us from doubts and time

if I had known how to savor the full laugh
of the river that rocks in its fleece of leaves
my head held to the trunk’s pillow
my cheek cast amidst thyme
if I hadn’t fled like a coward to the back streets
and believed in the false lights of the city
in its burning waltz of noise

perhaps I wouldn’t–stumbling
rake my wooden head against the walls of night

The French original:

J’accepte Vie d’être votre hôte
de manger votre terre jusqu’à l’indigestion
de boire dans vos gobelets de craie
la lumière cachée des saisons le miel refroidi de vos fleurs
et mille liqueurs grossières

vous voyez j’obéis
les os bougent parfaitement dans le cuir de ma peau
et je colle mon ventre au ventre des hommes
j’obéis même si je me mouche dans votre nappe
que je crache dans vos plats

quand j’aurai bien ri bien usé la corne de mon cœur
j’accepte oui l’effroi
docilement dissoudre ma détresse de cadavre
mais durant cette sieste
enrobée dans votre drap de ravines
mon ventre bombé contre le ventre de la terre
que je jouisse de vos rêves de lait et d’astres
que tous ces repas de fortune pris jadis à votre table
aient la légèreté sur mon crâne et l’ivresse folle
d’une petite neige de printemps

Go gentle reader into the world here, of lakes, of houses and the past hidden in the woods, and what lies all about.

John Atkinson Grimshaw (1836-93), Evening, Knostop, Old Hall (1870)


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