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ruthless compassion
24 August 2006 @ 03:06 pm
When I was very little, my mom reports, I loved cherry tomatoes. But my first memory of cherry tomatoes is hating them; I didn't like the way they burst juicily in my mouth, and I especially didn't like the unpredictability of the bursting. It wasn't as bad as trying to pop a balloon, but it was similarly unpleasant.

This is funny to look back on, because I don't remember when I changed my mind about cherry tomatoes. I just know that I did, because they're one of my favorite snacks now. And especially now, when they're springing forth from the cherry tomato plant on my porch, and the ones here where I'm housesitting, and I can step out into the sunshine for a snack of sunshine on my skin and sunshine concentrated into sweet juiciness in my mouth.

What a great world.
 
 
ruthless compassion
24 August 2006 @ 03:58 pm
Today's poem is also one of my favorite songs, ever. I sang this a couple of times at El Proyecto in Guatemala, and if you ask very nicely, and I'm a little drunk, you might be able to convince me to sing at least part of it for you sometime. But probably not, so here's a link to hear it sung by Mercedes Sosa, who sounds better singing it than I could ever dream of.

Gracias a la Vida por Violeta Parra

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
me dio dos luceros que cuando los abro
perfecto distingo lo negro del blanco
y en el alto cielo su fondo estrellado
y en las multitudes el hombre que yo amo.

Gracias a la vida que me ha dado tanto
me ha dado el oido que en todo su ancho
Graba noche y dia grillos y canarios
Martillas, turbinas, ladrinos, chubascos,
Y la voz tan tierna de mi buen amado.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
me ha dado el sonido y el abecedario
con él las palabras que pienso y declaro
madre amigo hermano y luz alumbrando,
la ruta del alma del que estoy amando.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
me ha dado la marcha de mis pies cansados
con ellos anduve ciudades y charcos,
playas y desiertos montañas y llanos
y la casa tuya, tu calle y tu patio.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
me dio el corazón que agita su marco
cuando miro el fruto del cerebro humano,
cuando miro al bueno tan lejos del malo,
cuando miro al fondo de tus ojos claros.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
me ha dado la risa y me ha dado el llanto,
así yo distingo dicha de quebranto
los dos materiales que forman mi canto
y el canto de ustedes que es el mismo canto
y el canto de todos que es mi propio canto.
 
 
 
ruthless compassion
24 August 2006 @ 05:21 pm
I posted this as a comment in moominmolly's journal, but I decided I wanted to bring it over here, too, because, hey, look! Funny!

I had a hysterical conversation with a Scottish fellow in Guatemala, when someone else from the US finished an emphatic statement with, "period!" and the Scott said, "What is that? I mean, what do you Americans mean when you say that??"

I, confused as to what was confusing, explained about the period at the end of the sentence, and he said, "OH!! You mean 'full stop'!"

Then he paused for a second and said, "This makes a lot of movie dialogues make a lot more sense, now. I always wondered what menstruation had to do with making a point.
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ruthless compassion
24 August 2006 @ 11:35 pm
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