But perhaps God needs the longing

But perhaps God needs the longing, wherever else shall it dwell,

Which with kisses and tears and sighs fills mysterious spaces of air –

And perhaps is invisible soil from which roots of stars grow and swell –

And the radiant voice across fields of parting which calls to reunion there?

O my beloved, perhaps in the sky of longing worlds have been born of our love –

Just as our breathing, in and out, builds a cradle for life and death?

We are grains of sand, dark with farewell, lost in births’ secret treasure trove,

Around us already perhaps future moons, suns, and stars blaze in a fiery wreath.


~ Nelly Sachs ~

(Translated by Ruth and Matthew Mead, in Women in Praise of the Sacred

 edited by Jane Hirshfield)

photo: taken in our churchyard’s garden


Mrs. Abstract and I attended the graduation of one of our parish priests who graduated from Dominican University with a degree of Master of Science in School Education and Counseling Psychology.




Afterwards we went to celebrate the 3rd birthday  of our friends’ grandson.  

Later in the evening we went to dinner with our friends to a nice Thai Restaurant in Lafayette, east of San Francisco.

photo (top): of a bell found with the terra cotta warriors.

photo (below): cut-out like of how a dragon may look when etched in bells, wine vessels or armour.


What is time?

I finished reading Ben Lerner’s Leaving the Atocha Station, modernistic and whose main character mirrors the author  with the book title borrowed from one of John Ashbery’s poem, and Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughter House Five, with the terror and cruelty of war with funny vignettes that are tragic, and as one review says “you are not permitted to laugh.”

I can put more time to tackle Proust’s Remembrance of Things Past.


photo: phoenix, a symbol of immortality, is carved or etched in some of the artifacts found with the terra cotta warriors. This Matisse’s-like cutout of the phoenix is flashed on the screen as part of the exhibit, China’s Terra Cotta Warriors, to explain the symbols of immortality that the First Emperor had chosen. The dragon is the other symbol.


Purpose of poetry

“The purpose of poetry is to remind us

 how difficult it is to remain just one person,

 for our house is open, there are no keys in the doors,

 and invisible guests come in and out at will.”

from: Ars Poetica by Czeslaw Milosz

quoted in Nine Gates, Entering the Mind of Poetry by Jane Hirshfield

A day in the life of

from one wine country to another


Yesterday (Friday) our friends J and J from the East Bay picked Mrs. Abstract and I and 4 of us drove to  Anderson Valley, another wine county in Northern California about 3 hours from San Francisco, off Highway 101, Route 128.

We stayed at Anderson Inn in Philo. Had a wonderful dinner at Table 128 restaurant located at Boonville Hotel in Boonville. The 2 places are just a few miles apart.

After a lazy start this morning, we selected sandwiches at the deli and went up to Esterlina Vineyard & Winery, tasted wines and had picnic lunch there. Later we continued our wine tasting at Toulouse Winery. Both are located in Philo. 

We are back at home a few hours ago. Of course, with several bottles of wines.

photo: taken from the balcony of Esterlina’s.