Montaigne: thoughts on death

"Il est incertain où la mort nous attende, attendons-la partout. La préméditation de la mort est préméditation de la liberté. Qui a appris à mourir, il a désappris à servir. Le savoir mourir nous affranchit de toute sujétion et contrainte. Il n'y a rien de mal en la vie pour celui qui a bien compris que la privation de la vie n'est pas mal."

My rough (read: probably terrible) translation:
It is uncertain where death waits for us, but we wait for it everywhere. The premeditation of death is premeditation of liberty. He who learns how to die has forgotten to serve. The knowledge of death frees us from every constraint and obligation. There is nothing bad in life for he who understands well that the withdrawal of life is not bad.

Chicho and I were talking about death today and what it means, particularly how deep a connection it holds to love, at least in my eyes. And Chicho called me back with this beautiful quote.


Facundo Cabral

“Me gustan los que se callan y me gustan los que cantan, y de tanto andar conmigo me gusta lo que me pasa.
Me pasan cosas como éstas, aunque no tenga importancia andar contándole a todos todas las cosas que pasan.
Porque uno no vive solo y lo que me pasa le está sucediendo al mundo, única razón y causa.
Pues todito es tan perfecto porque perfecto es Dios, que se mueve alguna estrella cuando arranca una flor, por eso si hay uno, hay dos.
Supe del diablo la noche que al hambriento dije no, también esa noche supe que el diablo es hijo de Dios.
Ando solo por la vida como un toro y dominante modestamente cantor sin pretensión de enseñar, porque si el mundo es redondo no se que es andar adelante, andar y andar, siempre andando nada mas que por andar.
No vine a explicar al mundo, sólo vine a tocar.
No quiero juzgar al hombre, al hombre quiero contar.
Mi condición es la vida y mi camino cantar y cantar a la vida es mi manera de andar.
Un día llegue a Tantino y conocí a un anciano que a falta de inteligencia se le dió por ser muy sabio, le pregunté por Jesús una noche al lindo viejo y ahí mismo lo conocí cuando me alcanzó un espejo.
Yo bailo con mi canción y no con la que me tocan, yo no soy la libertad, pero sí el que la provoca.
Si ya conozco el camino para que he de andar al costado, si la libertad me gusta, para que he de vivir de esclavo.
Elegir, yo siempre elijo más que por mi, por mi hermano y si he elegido ser águila fue por amor al gusano.
Prefiero seguir de pie y no en caballo prestado, alguien por una manzana va siempre quedando a un lado, siempre se llega primero el que va más descargado.
El día que yo me muera no habrá que usar la balanza, pues pa´velar a un cantor con una bilonga alcanza.
Doy la cara al enemigo, la espalda al buen comentario pues el que acepta un halago empieza a ser dominado. El hombre le hace caricias al caballo, pa´montarlo.
Perdón si me propasé y me puse moralejo, nadie puede dar consejos, no hay hombre que sea tan viejo.
Me pongo el sol al hombro y el mundo es amarillo.
Me gusta andar, pero no sigo el camino pues lo seguro no tiene misterio.
Me gusta ir con el verano muy lejos pero volver donde mi madre en invierno. Ver los perros que jamás me olvidaron y los caballos y los abrazos que me dan mis hermanos, me gusta… me gusta… me gusta…”


¿Quién me ha robado el mes de abril?

One of the best parts about dating someone from another country is that you have so many new things to share with each other. Last night Chicho and I spent a significant amount of time just showing each other songs that were famous or that we loved. He had never heard of "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" or Johnny Cash, and I had never heard of Joaquin Sabina or Chavela Vargas.

It was a good night. And then we watched iZombie, because that's what we do every Tuesday.


So maist thou live, till like ripe Fruit thou drop
Into thy Mothers lap, or be with ease
Gatherd, not harshly pluckt, for death mature:
This is old age.

Paradise Lost, Book 11 (1674 version)

                                              Men must endure
Their going hence even as their coming hither.
Ripeness is all.

King Lear, 5.2.9–11 (Arden edition)

"Language is a virus." —Susan Sontag


By October most campgrounds are closed at Yellowstone, only Grant Village and Mammoth Hot Springs are open. We stayed at Grant Village, which was really quiet and beautiful, near a large lake.

It was a perfect weekend.

Us, Black Women by Natasha T. Miller

Us, Black women
Like samples at a grocery store
Set out to be picked over and never fully paid for

Us, Black women
With vaginas that still smell like unwanted mixed babies
And four hundred years of forced entries

And this nigga ask you
Can he hit it
As if it hasn’t already been beaten

Outkast goes to court with Rosa Parks
Ludacris makes a diss record about Oprah
And rooms full of upstanding black men say, hell, we don’t know what happened in that car
Rihanna may have given Chris Brown a REASON to beat her down

I take it you don’t have little sisters
and there must be shrapnel in your back to replace the spine that once made you a man, see
I’m not mad at you for your opinion
I’m just hoping
that we are never two pop stars alone in a car and you get mad at me for mine

I can still hear the cries of all the babies that had to get left behind by their own mothers
I’ve got the tongue of Harriet Tubman I can still taste the blood of all the wounds she licked to get us here
And we are constantly trying to get back there
Then you say that she don’t like her own people
Because she built a school in AFRICA
Nigga, you must have forgotten your roots
Do you think that we only exist here?

I’ve never seen you leave a penny in a gas station
You couldn’t imagine the pain of raising a Black Panther, only to hear your son calling you bitches and hoes on the radio
You are no Afeni Shakur

Your jaw couldn’t walk a Miles Davis inside the mouth of Cicely Tyson
And you question the charity of a black woman
While this man asks
can he hit it
As if it hasn’t already been beaten

We have been running this world since it started
Have yet to receive a day off of our feet
There are no holidays dedicated to us
Just a bunch of poems used to undress everything but our minds
Millions of songs played to make us feel like we were born to be called everything but our names
And cemeteries, dressed up like videos, burying our images every other T.V. station

We get one Michelle every 44 years
We get one African American teen pregnancy every 44 minutes
And little Wayne says that he wants to fuck every girl in the world
Sarah Goodes takes part in inventing beds
Trey Songz says we gone think he invented sex
How disconnected we are
Yet hanging from the same umbilical cords we clipped you from

Stop asking “can you hit it”
Take your mother flowers for no reason
Stop making excuses for you putting your hands on us

Putting your hands on us
Running out on us
Running over us
Stop treating us like samples at a grocery store

Do not touch us
If you have no plans on making this home.