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  • mono 8:03 pm on October 14, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , David Thoreau, Henry David Thoreau, , , , , Organizations, , Samuel Beckett, Thinking, Walden,   

    Five Quotations for Your Learning Pleasure (Selected by Your Humble Editor on a Rainy Tuesday Evening) 

    You will see throughout this blog, quotations from a handful of thinkers that I admire and learn from. The following are five selected quotations for your learning pleasure.

    Perhaps, one or more of these quotations will help you along with your day or stick with you and re-emerge when the time is right or ripe. More importantly, though, I hope that you will use these words and do something with them. That is, these quotations are seedlings, waiting to be realized by the right person. I don’t know how you will interpret them or what you will do with them. That depends on you and where you are “coming from” with your ways of how you have become mindful of the world. Thank you for your attention.


    “Taking charge of your own learning is a part of taking charge of your life, which is the sine qua non in becoming an integrated person” – Warren Bennis from On Becoming a Leader

    “Live your life skillfully, with grace.
    Dance life so that your expertise appears effortless.
    To develop such skill, immerse yourself in life.
    Pay attention to life’s details.
    Then see how the details fit together as a whole.
    Then put your experiential understanding into further practice.
    Keep upgrading your life.” – David K. Reynolds from Reflections on the Chuang Tzu

    “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” – Samuel Beckett from Westward Ho

    “The ideal personality for the opening age is a balanced personality: not the specialist but the whole man. Such a personality must be in dynamic interaction with every part of his environment and every part of his heritage.” – Lewis Mumford from The Condition of Man

    “We must learn to reawaken and keep ourselves awake, not by mechanical aids, but by an infinite expectation of the dawn, which does not forsake us in our soundest sleep. I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by a conscious endeavor. It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look, which morally we can do. To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts. Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour.” – Henry David Thoreau from Walden and Civil Disobedience

    For more information on the authors quoted here, please visit:

    David K. Reynolds: Reflections on the Chuang Tzu
    Warren Bennis’s Qualities of a Leader
    Samuel Beckett On-line Resources
    Lewis Mumford: Megathinker and Master of the Metaphor
    Henry David Thoreau: American Transcendentalism Web

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  • mono 7:04 am on October 10, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , fragments, , , Paul Celan, , , Samuel Beckett   

    Quattro Poesie di Mattina 

    the morning creeps aching in your foot
    to the beginning of another situation,
    a new task, a set of masks to don.
    I awoke feverish in the after-glow of night
    visions and now staring down an imagined
    trajectory of this day’s unfolding chaos.

    Brought close, brought too close – you always
    sleep when I awake, but not today, today in this
    once-occurring time-bloom. Oh, to a new day as
    the train’s distorted hum signals movement, the perverse
    movement of passengers of whom you do not know, maybe.

    In this autumnal cool stillness, even the birds cry such that
    you could extract truth from their screeching howls – from
    the deafening mechanical purr of an automobile as it passes
    too close, obscenely close.

    Move, walk, put your limping foot forward, ahead of you and
    forge something grand out of this renewal of sameness, this renewal
    of ever-changing semi-sameness.

  • mono 6:45 pm on May 14, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , hand painted, , Neither, , , Samuel Beckett, , ,   

    Neither: Samuel Beckett 


    Yesterday I made a viral video reading of Samuel Beckett’s poem “Neither.”
    It is silent. I had originally recorded myself reading the poem and layered it over the top of the video, but decided against inserting it into the video. Watching it silently after reading the poem left an interesting resonance, which hopefully you will appreciate.

    To put you in the context, I will provide the poem for you:

    Samuel Beckett: Neither

    to and fro in shadow from inner to outer shadow

    from impenetrable self to impenetrable unself
    by way of neither

    as between two lit refuges whose doors once
    neared gently close, once away turned from
    gently part again

    beckoned back and forth and turned away

    heedless of the way, intent on the one gleam
    or the other

    unheard footfalls only sound

    till at last halt for good, absent for good
    from self and other

    then no sound

    then gently light unfading on that unheeded

    unspeakable home


    The content of the video is a men’s large size dress shirt that I hand painted.

    The link provided will take you to my Vimeo page. Thank you for watching.

    Samuel Beckett: Neither

    • roisinaobrien 4:49 am on June 15, 2010 Permalink

      Great piece of work by a brilliant author – My fascination with Beckett will never end!

  • mono 9:57 pm on May 11, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , darkness, diner, Existentialism, , , , rainy, Samuel Beckett   

    A Poem, A Present 


    I have been quite busy this last week, but should have time to catch up on things within the week. Thank you for your patience and I hope the archive serves you well. It has been a dark and dreary weekend here in Nihon. Last night I sat alone at a dingy diner reading Samuel Beckett. Here is a bit of Beckett for you. Have a pleasant day.

    A Poem by Samuel Beckett:

    what would I do without this world faceless incurious
    where to be lasts but an instant where ebery instant
    spills in the void the ignorance of having been
    without this wave where in the end
    body and shadow together are engulfed
    what would I do without this silence where the murmurs die
    the pantings the frenzies toward succour towards love
    without this sky that soars
    above it’s ballast dust

    what would I do what I did yesterday and the day before
    peering out of my deadlight looking for another
    wandering like me eddying far from all the living
    in a convulsive space
    among the voices voiceless
    that throng my hiddenness

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