Category Archives: literature

The Peacelike Mongoose

Some decades ago there was a writer named James Thurber.
He wrote many very wise words.
I think he foresaw the 21st Century.

IN cobra country a mongoose was borne one day who didn’t want to fight cobras or anything else. The word spread from mongoose to mongoose that there was a mongoose who didn’t want to fight cobras. If he didn’t want to fight anything else, it was his own business, but it was the duty of every mongoose to kill cobras or be killed by cobras.

‘Why?’ asked the peacelike mongoose, and the word went around that the strange new  mongoose was not only pro-cobra and anti-mongoose but intellectually curious and against the ideals and traditions of mongoosism.

‘He is crazy,’ cried the young mongoose’s father.

‘He is sick,’ said his mother.

‘He is a coward,’ shouted his brothers.

‘He is a mongoosexual,’  whispered his sisters.

Strangers who had never laid eyes on the peacelike mongoose remembered that they had  seen him crawling on his stomach, or trying  on Cobra hoods, or plotting the violent overthrow of Mongoosia.

‘I am trying to use is reason and intelligence,’ said the strange new mongoose.

‘Reason is six-sevenths of treason,’ said one of his neighbours.

‘Intelligence is what the enemy uses,” said another.

Finally, the rumour spread that the mongoose had venom in his sting, like a cobra, and he was tried, convicted by a show of paws, and condemned to banishment.

Ashes to ashes, and clay to clay,
if the enemy doesn’t get you your own folks may

The New Idol

Some thoughts on the State by Freddy Nietzsche

as written in “Also Spake Zarasthustra”


Somewhere there are still people and herds, but not with us. . . .  Here are states. . . . .

A state is called the coldest of all cold monsters.nietzsche Coldly lieth it also; and this lie creeping from its mouth: “I, the state, am the people.”

But the state lieth in all languages of good and evil; and whatever it saith it lieth; and whatever it hath it hath stolen.

Confussion of language of good and evil; this sign I give unto you as the sign of the state.

Everything will it give YOU, if YE worship it, the new idol: thus it purchaseth the lustre of your virtue, and the glance of your proud eyes.

It seeketh to allure by means of you, the many-too-many! Yea, a hellish artifice hath here been devised, a death-horse jingling with the trappings of divine honours”

The state, I call it, where all are poison-drinkers, the good and the bad: the state, where all lose themselves, the good and the bad: the state, where the slow suicide of all—is called “life.”

Just see these superfluous ones! They steal the works of the inventors and the treasures of the wise. Culture, they call their theft—and everything becometh sickness and trouble unto them!

Just see these superfluous ones! Sick are they always; they vomit their bile and call it a newspaper. They devour one another, and cannot even digest themselves.

Just see these superfluous ones! Wealth they acquire and become poorer thereby. Power they seek for, and above all, the lever of power, much money—these impotent ones!

See them clamber, these nimble apes! They clamber over one another, and thus scuffle into the mud and the abyss.

Towards the throne they all strive: it is their madness—as if happiness sat on the throne! Ofttimes sitteth filth on the throne.


Thus spake Zarathustra not of but about

my country and my now; Australia 2014.

How many can you name?


The Purity of English

Oh The Places You’ll Go

Based on Dr. Seuss’s final book before his death, this is a story about life’s ups and downs, told by the people of Burning Man 2011.

Dr Seuss and flashes of nudity are not concepts I would normally include in the same sentence. For this is from Burning Man and of course there is some innocent nudity.

Mostly there is a thoughtful challenge.

Burgled from Dolce

Cthulhu Arrived

In a care package which crossed the seas, my tatty cyber-Sis Marty had enclosed a creature close to my heart.

A creature from dimensions far from ours which will one day eat my soul!

Although I may contact John Carter who will be able to save me!

Oh, and Marty, I love craft work like this  :)

Book Review; Pair of Dice Lost, Jeremy Ludlow

This is a volume for which I have been searching for many years. I first found a reference to it in the original Index Librorum Prohibitorum. By the fourth edition of this list, Pair of Dice Lost had been removed from the list, perhaps an indication of just how seriously the Catholic Church took this heresy.

While I have still been unable to find a copy of Ludlow’s work, I have at least found a review written by Tad Tuleja in his Catalogue of Lost Books.

An engraving from the original manuscript shows that Michelangelo was aware of this heresy although he could only code an allusion in his work.

It is also probable that Albert Einstein had access to this manuscript and his reading of it, coupled with his rejection of the heresy, led to his famous comment that, “God does not play dice with the Universe.”

Pair of Dice Lost (1671), Jeremy Ludlow

John Milton’s great poem Paradise Lost covers the biblical ground from the revolt of the rebel angels to the expulsion of Adam and Eve from Eden. Milton’s younger contemporary Ludlow, who was “enthralled by Mr. Milton’s sonorities,” nevertheless felt the epic lacked something, and he endeavored to provide it in a “predendum.” What was lacking, he felt, was a fuller depiction of Heaven before the revolt, when Lucifer was still the Son of Light and the favorite of God’s admiring legions. “It was Mr. Milton’s own picture of the Archfiend,” he explained, “that compelled me to intrude myself into his poem: for I felt that a Being so fully tortured must speak his case with the lacrimae doloris sui, and not the bombast of a Drunkard caught out at tippling.”

Ludlow was not the first or the last to question the rhetorical excesses of Milton’s “Archfiend,” though he was certainly unique in his response. Pair of Dice Lost describes the “halcyon aeons” from the beginning of Creation to Satan’s defection, during which the Creator and his luminous companions amuse themselves by running interplanetary races (Satan has the record for the Mercury­to-Jupiter circuit), quaffing an ethereal beverage called “nebula,” and when they tire of these exertions, gambling. Using polyfaceted “cosmic” dice, they play not for gain but for preeminence: the winners get to oversee the Milky Way for the next millennia, or (an even more coveted prize) to sit closer to God’s throne.

All goes well in this celestial entertainment palace until, around nineteen aeons A.C., Satan comes to a disturbing realization: since God is both omniscient and omnipotent, there is no assurance He is not cheating at the game, either by placing his bets on a fore­seeable outcome or by manipulating the dice as they fall. The favorite angel broaches this sticky subject, and is informed magisterially, “Have you then invented Morality, my shining One? And when I breathed upon the waters, where were you?”

Understandably upset at this response, Satan muses darkly, “If the Almighty will not then set down Rules, why his loyal subjects must need set down their Own.” So thinking, he steals the cosmic dice, hurls them cavalierly in the direction of the planet Earth, and waits for judgment. It is not long in coming. Unable to tease an apology out of Satan for “rashly picking up My marbles and going home,” God banishes him from the celestial presence and con­demns him to an eternity below on Earth. “On thy belly thou must goe,” Ludlow echoes Milton, “and eat dirt with the creatures that I send you; so much thou must endure until thou save my dice, and restore them to their proper horne.”

Satan never does find the dice – which is why, in Ludlow’s wry estimation, “This green yet besieged orb of mud and mistiness/ spins yet uncertain, the Almighty’s plan defied.” The Latitudinarian implications of this comment won Ludlow no friends among the Puritan hierarchy, and indeed his “spirited despatch” was soon made anathema both by Canterbury and (redundantly) by Rome. In the bitter whimsy of its theme – his hint that God himself may be out of control-it speaks more strongly to the modern temper than to Ludlow’s own.

For Harry Potter Retail Therapy.

List of all the shops located in Diagon Alley:

Found here