- ‘Invictus’ by English poet William Ernest Henley, a poem Nelson Mandela used to recite to fellow prisoners at Robben Island, where he was held for eighteen years. 'Invictus' is Latin for 'undefeated'. This is the full poem:
- Out of the night that covers me,
- Black as the pit from pole to pole,
- I thank whatever gods may be
- For my unconquerable soul.
- In the fell clutch of circumstance
- I have not winced nor cried aloud.
- Under the bludgeonings of chance
- My head is bloody, but unbowed.
- Beyond this place of wrath and tears
- Looms but the Horror of the shade,
- And yet the menace of the years
- Finds and shall find me unafraid.
- It matters not how strait the gate,
- How charged with punishments the scroll,
- I am the master of my fate:
- I am the captain of my soul.
- via Hugh Laurie, Babaloo Blue and Brighid45
Preheat oven to 160.
Place a cast iron casserole on the highest heat and soften onions in oil and salted butter. When they begin to complain introduce them to some lamb cutlets and sear the whole mess until the meat begins to form a veneer. Provide small relief with a spatula. Continue until there are satisfying sticky brown lines in the meat and a glaze covering the bottom of the pot.
Deglaze with red wine. Stir while it hisses, boils and spits. Don’t give it any quarter. Throw in vegetables chopped to a relatively small size - say a quarter of inch by an inch by a quarter. Parsnip, sweet potato, carrot and swede will do nicely. Not too many, just enough. Turn the heat down and make sure the whole is well mixed. Add more wine. No, more. Water it down, but not much.
Smash two cloves of garlic, throw them in. Two sprigs of rosemary dunked as proof against witchcraft. A pinch of salt. Half a piece of bitter dark chocolate, chopped.
Allow to settle on the hob at the very lowest setting. It will achieve a nice, energetic simmer. At some point, when you get bored, or the pot is looking a little too pleased with itself, confine to the oven until feeling satisfied and preferably hungry. If feeling generous, stir occasionally.
Serve with green leaves, which will mop up the juices and cut the richness, or whatever else takes your fancy. Clean the plate with sourdough bread and too much butter.
Their riders were excellent players, but they were a team of crack players instead of a crack team; and that made all the difference in the world.
Felix Randal the farrier, O is he dead then? my duty all ended,
Who have watched his mould of man, big-boned and hardy-handsome
Pining, pining, till time when reason rambled in it, and some
Fatal four disorders, fleshed there, all contended? Sickness broke him.
Impatient, he cursed at first, but mended
Being anointed and all; though a heavenlier heart began some
Months earlier, since I had our sweet reprieve and ransom
Tendered to him. Ah well, God rest him all road ever he offended!
This seeing the sick endears them to us, us too it endears.
My tongue had taught thee comfort, touch had quenched thy tears,
Thy tears that touched my heart, child, Felix, poor Felix Randal;
How far from then forethought of, all thy more boisterous years,
When thou at the random grim forge, powerful amidst peers,
Didst fettle for the great grey drayhorse his bright and battering sandal!
By Gerard Manley Hopkins
I’m an anti-boredom man. I’m here for the ecstasy.
She has hands that surround books with their cartilage of honey. She has breasts of uncooked meat, so small, whose pressure drives one mad; her breasts are network of fibers. She has a thought that belongs to me, a thought that is insidious and twisted, that unwinds as from a cocoon. She has a soul.
Julie M. Johnson. The Memory Factory; The Forgotten Women Artists of Vienna 1900 (West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2012) ISBN 978-1-55753-613-6
"It’s remarkable that recent scholarship can force significant reconsideration of an artistic culture as well-studied as that of Vienna around 1900, but that’s what Julie M. Johnson’s work has done. As such, it will be required reading for anyone interested in Vienna’s turn-of-the-century art and art institutions, particularly the schools and the artists’ associations and unions – which functioned much as today’s artists’ collectives and artist-run spaces. It is also an important contribution to women’s studies and to the historiography of art, for it documents a group of women artists who were active in Vienna’s art world around 1900 but were entirely written out of later historical accounts."
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