G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

W H Auden: "But in my arms till break of day / Let the living creature lie. / Mortal, guilty, but to me/ The entirely beautiful."

Will Self: “To attempt to write seriously is always, I feel, to fail – the disjunction between my beautifully sonorous, accurate and painfully affecting mental content, and the leaden, halting sentences on the page always seems a dreadful falling short. It is this failure – a ceaseless threnody keening through the writing mind – that dominates my working life, just as an overweening sense of not having loved with enough depth or recklessness or tenderness dominates my personal one.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Art Spiegelman: "You know words in a way are hitting you on the left side of your brain, music and visual arts hit on the right side of the brain, so the idea is to pummel you, to send you from left brain to right brain and back until you're as unbalanced as I am."

विलास सारंग: "संदर्भ कुठलेही असोत, संस्कृत, इंग्रजी, बुद्धिवादी, तांत्रिक, इतिहासाचे, खगोलशास्त्राचे, आधुनिक पदार्थविज्ञानाचे, शिवकालीन व पेशवाईतील बखरीचे, अगणित ज्ञानक्षेत्रांचे, अशा वैविध्यपूर्ण ज्ञानावर लेखन- विशेषत: कवितालेखन- उभं राहत."

Thursday, November 25, 2010

असेच होते गांधीजीही, येशु क्रिस्त अन् कृष्ण कदाचित् कालिदास अन टैकोब्राही

Jill Lepore: The life of Potter is the story of a man fated, at death, to be buried in a potter’s field. To the American Plutarch, it was rubbish. There is no humility in monumental biography. But there is humility in nature, in time, and in history. The same sun that shines on the Bunker Hill monument, Melville pointed out, shines on Potter’s unmarked grave. Come winter, the same snow falls, dusting us all. (The New Yorker, September 27 2010)

One of B S Mardhekar's (बा. सी. मर्ढेकर) poems: 'Mee Ek Mungi, Ha Ek Mungi' [मी एक मुंगी, हा एक मुंगी), poem 16 from 'Anakhi Kahi Kavita' (आणखी कांहीं कविता), has these lines:

'ह्या नच मुंग्या : हींच माणसे :
असेच होते गांधीजीही,
येशु क्रिस्त अन् कृष्ण कदाचित्
कालिदास अन टैकोब्राही.'

(They are not ants : they are humans :
Gandhiji was like this too
Jesus Christ and Krishna perhaps
Kalidas and Tycho Brahe too)

I have already written about this poem here.

After reading DAN BILEFSKY's article in The New York Times on November 19 2010, looking at Brahe's remains, I realised how human Brahe was!

In India, majority of Hindus are cremated and hence have no graves, and even if they had, we wouldn't allow opening of them. There would be riots even at the mention of it.

But if there were to be graves for Krishna or Gandhi, their remains wouldn't look very different from that of Brahe.

Niels Linnerup of the University of Copenhagen examines the remains of Tycho Brahe in Prague,

Pool photo by Jacob Christensen Ravn/Aarhus University, via European Pressphoto Agency courtsey: The New York Times, Published: November 19, 2010