med_cat: (cat in dress)
Recipe for Happiness in Khabarovsk or Anyplace

One grand boulevard with trees
with one grand café in sun
with strong black coffee in very small cups

One not necessarily very beautiful
man or woman who loves you

One fine day

By Lawrence Ferlinghetti

(Found at this site.)

(found thanks to [ profile] duathir)
med_cat: (Hourglass)
December's Snow

The bloom is on the May once more,
The chestnut buds have burst anew;
But, darling, all our springs are o'er,
'Tis winter still for me and you.
We plucked Life's blossoms long ago
What's left is but December's snow.

But winter has its joys as fair,
The gentler joys, aloof, apart;
The snow may lie upon our hair
But never, darling, in our heart.
Sweet were the springs of long ago
But sweeter still December's snow.

Yes, long ago, and yet to me
It seems a thing of yesterday;
The shade beneath the willow tree,
The word you looked but feared to say.
Ah! when I learned to love you so
What recked we of December's snow?

But swift the ruthless seasons sped
And swifter still they speed away.
What though they bow the dainty head
And fleck the raven hair with gray?
The boy and girl of long ago
Are laughing through the veil of snow.

By Arthur Conan Doyle

Originally posted by [ profile] duathir at Arthur Conan Doyle, 'December's Snow'--many thanks!

med_cat: (woman reading)

(Cautionary Tales for Children. Hilaire Belloc. Illustrated by B.T.B.)

The nicest child I ever knew
Was Charles Augustus Fortescue.
He never lost his cap, or tore

His stockings or his pinafore:

In eating Bread he made no Crumbs,
He was extremely fond of sums,
To which, however, he preferred
The Parsing of a Latin Word—

He sought, when it was within his power,
For information twice an hour,
And as for finding Mutton-Fat
Unappetising, far from that!

He often, at his Father’s Board,
Would beg them, of his own accord,
To give him, if they did not mind,
The Greasiest Morsels they could find—

His Later Years did not belie
The Promise of his Infancy.
In Public Life he always tried
To take a judgement Broad and Wide;

In Private, none was more than he
Renowned for quiet courtesy.
He rose at once in his Career,
And long before his Fortieth Year

Had wedded Fifi, Only Child
Of Bunyan, First Lord Aberfylde.
He thus became immensely Rich,
And built the Splendid Mansion which

Is called The Cedars, Muswell Hill,
Where he resides in affluence still,
To show what everybody might
med_cat: (cat in dress)

I used to think all poets were Byronic--
Mad, bad and dangerous to know.
And then I met a few. Yes it's ironic--
I used to think all poets were Byronic.
They're mostly wicked as a ginless tonic
And wild as pension plans. Not long ago
I used to think all poets were Byronic--
Mad, bad and dangerous to know.

Originally posted by [ profile] signal_moon at Triolet by Wendy Cope
med_cat: (Stethoscope)
"Medicine used to be simple, ineffective, and relatively it is complex, effective, and potentially dangerous."

(Sir Cyril Chantler)
med_cat: (cat in dress)
Engineers' Corner

Why isn't there an Engineers' Corner in Westminster Abbey? In Britain we've always made more fuss of a ballad than a blueprint ... How many schoolchildren dream of becoming great engineers?

-- advertisement placed in The Times by the Engineering Council

We make more fuss of ballads than of blueprints --
That's why so many poets end up rich,
While engineers scrape by in cheerless garrets.
Who needs a bridge or dam? Who needs a ditch?
Whereas the person who can write a sonnet
Has got it made. It's always been the way,
For everybody knows that we need poems
And everybody reads them every day.

Yes, life is hard if you choose engineering --
You're sure to need another job as well;
You'll have to plan your projects in the evenings
Instead of going out. It must be hell.

While well-heeled poets ride around in Daimlers,
You'll burn the midnight oil to earn a crust,
With no hope of a statue in the Abbey,
With no hope, even, of a modest bust.

No wonder small boys dream of writing couplets
And spurn the bike, the lorry and the train.
There's far too much encouragement for poets --
That's why this country's going down the drain.

Wendy Cope

Originally posted by [ profile] thechasingiamb at In response to Poetry Nation
med_cat: (cat in dress)
At 3AM
Wendy Cope

the room contains no sound
except the ticking of the clock
which has begun to panic
like an insect, trapped
in an enormous box.

Books lie open on the carpet.

Somewhere else
you're sleeping
and beside you there's a woman
who is crying quietly
so you won't wake.

Originally posted by [ profile] midnightcrush at At 3AM - Wendy Cope
med_cat: (cat in dress)
May and the Poets

There is May in books forever;
May will part from Spenser never;
May's in Milton, May's in Prior,
May's in Chaucer, Thomson, Dyer;
May's in all the Italian books:--
She has old and modern nooks,
Where she sleeps with nymphs and elves,
In happy places they call shelves,
And will rise and dress your rooms
With a drapery thick with blooms.
Come, ye rains, then if ye will,
May's at home, and with me still;
But come rather, thou, good weather,
And find us in the fields together.

By James Leigh Hunt

Originally posted by [ profile] duathir at James Leigh Hunt, 'May and the Poets'
med_cat: (woman reading)

It’s Fun fact Friday!

A chocolate bar most of us are not old enough to know about with a taste few cared for and was even called “Hitler’s Secret Weapon” by many infantrymen.

“The D ration bar”.

Developed by Hershey in 1937 at the request of the Army Quartermasters office had four requirements: a bar weighing about 4 ounces, able to withstand high temperatures, be high in food energy value, and with a taste that was just a little better than a boiled potato.

The reasoning for the latter was to prevent them from being eaten as snack so they would be kept and used as an emergency food source. The blend of chocolate, sugar, cocoa butter, skim milk powder and oat flour was so thick that it did not flow like conventional chocolate and had to be hand packed into each mold.

Most who ate it said they would have rather eaten the boiled potato. Because the bar was designed to withstand high temperatures, it was nearly impossible to bite into, requiring the men to shave off slices before they could chew it, and the sugar did little to mask the bitter taste of the dark chocolate.

Despite this, Hershey produced about 3 billion (yes with a B) of these bars between 1940 and 1945 receiving numerous awards for their outstanding war effort. Until next Friday – Have a sweet week.

(from the Old Town Candy shop on FB, May 5th)


May. 7th, 2017 01:19 pm
med_cat: (woman reading)
Originally posted by [ profile] oloriel at LOL
--many thanks for permission to repost!

Check out the original post for further discussion in the comments ;)

I just read the MOST STUPID THING on a friend's Tumblr (not written by the friend, just the start of a discussion that the friend reblogged). Granted, I read a LOT OF STUPID THINGS on Tumblr and I produce a lot of stupid things on LJ meself, but this was... special, so here it comes:

It sure is convenient that all these songs that ostensibly weren’t written in English all rhyme when translated into English, isn’t it, Mr. Tolkien?


Gosh. Yes. That sure breaks the suspension of disbelief! It sure is convenient that all these Shakespeare poems that ostensibly weren't written in German all rhyme when translated into German, isn't it? (Or French. Or Spanish. Or probably any language that does full rhymes, I expect?)

"An Elegy"

May. 7th, 2017 10:22 am
med_cat: (cat in dress)

Помнишь ты или не помнишь
Этот день и этот час,
Как сиял нам луч заката,
Как он медлил и погас?
Ничего не предвещало,
Что готовится гроза.
Я подсчитывал расходы,
Ты же - красила глаза.
А потом ты говорила,
Милым голосом звеня,
Что напрасно нету дяди
У тебя иль у меня.
Если б дядя этот самый
Жил в Америке, то он
Уж давно бы там скончался
И оставил миллион...
Я не стал с тобою спорить
И доказывать опять,
Что могла бы быть и тетя,
Тысяч так на двадцать пять.
Я ведь знаю, ты сказала б,
Что, когда живешь в мечтах,
То бессмысленно, конечно,
Говорить о мелочах.

med_cat: (dog and book)

Vaguebooking is any update on a social network (although primarily Facebook) that is intentionally vague. Status updates which fall under the category of vaguebooking can be long or short, but most comprise just a few simple words. Regardless of the length they all have one thing in common – to elicit a response from friends and followers.

While the majority of us will just be clear about something that has happened or why we’re upset, vaguebookers take great delight in beating around the metaphorical bush. Seeking attention while giving away as little as humanly possible.

Definition from the Urban Dictionary, and a few examples

A few more examples (you can even submit the ones you find)

Why it's usually not a good idea:

5 Reasons Vaguebooking is Destroying Your Relationships

The next time your friend posts a vague FB status, reply with this video

A slightly different perspective:

In Defense of Vaguebooking

(cross-posting from [ profile] 1word1day)
med_cat: (cat in dress)

A short French cartoon about living with being different...can't find it with English subtitles, unfortunately.

(found via [ profile] luch_svetik--many thanks!)
med_cat: (cat in dress)


Этот Коля Сыроежкин,
Это дьявол, а не мальчик!
Все, что видит, все, что слышит,
Он на ус себе мотает.
А потом начнет однажды
Все разматывать обратно,
Да расспрашивать, да мучить
Многословно, многократно.
Вот, пристал намедни к маме,-
Так что маме стало жарко:
Объясни ему, хоть тресни,
Чем прославился Петрарка?!

Household Matters

This Kolya Syroezhkin,
He's a little devil, not a boy!
All he sees and all he hears,
He takes note of,
And at one point, he starts
Unraveling all his notes,
And to question, and to badger
Everyone, many times, with many words.
There, yesternight he started in on his mother,
So much that she grew hot in the face:
Explain to him, no matter what,
What was Petrarch famous for?!

Read more... )

med_cat: (Hourglass)
Города и годы

Старый Лондон пахнет ромом,

Жестью, дымом и туманом.

Но и этот запах может

Стать единственно желанным.

Ослепительный Неаполь,

Весь пронизанный закатом,

Пахнет мулями и слизью,

Тухлой рыбой и канатом.

Город Гамбург пахнет снедью, )

Cities and Years

The old London smells of rum,
Tin, smoke, and fog
But even that smell can
Become the only desirable one
The dazzling Naples,
All shot through with sunset rays,
Smells of boats and slime,
Rotten fish, and ship ropes.
The city of Hamburg smells of food, )
med_cat: (cat in dress)
Crossposting from [ profile] 1word1day

Grandiloquent Word of the Day: Mouse Potato
(MOUS po•tay•toe)
-A person who spends large amounts of their leisure or working time on a computer.

Combination of couch potato and computer mouse.

Used in a sentence:
“Would you quit being such a mouse potato and go get some sun, you’re starting to frighten the children!”

(from Grandiloquent Word of the Day, on Facebook)
med_cat: (Spring tulips)
The Dance Before The Arch

Windy April night-mist swept the Square ;
Lights among the leafage swayed and flashed;
Piquant bosky odors filled the air,
Piquant as a Maenad's flying hair
Late the dripping dogwood buds had lashed.
Then three fared forth together:
A wise old teacher of men,
A poet who laughed with the weather,
And a silent knight of the pen.
They walked in the rain-witched park
While the hours grew small and dark,
And their talk was light as a feather
That Bacchus blows at a mark.

All around, the city-sounds were whist ;
All about, where branches laughed and leapt,
Glints of eyes looked out into the mist,
Little, golden, dancing, rainbow-kissed :
Little shapes and shadows flashed and crept.
Then the sage: "O wonderful weather!
Strange, eerie!" Then he of the pen:
"The pixies are out all together :
Valpurgis Nacht — Bacchus — Amen !"
He waved his arms and inclined
His face to the night, joy-blind.
Then the poet : "Oh, pluck me a feather
From the stretched gray wing of the wind !"

Over asphalt polished by the rain,
Out of mist-swirls iris-splotched with light,
Loomed a sudden beauty, marble, plain,
Arched and sombre, fronting with disdain
All the springtime turmoil of that night.
Then the sage: "The old Arch, in this weather,
Needs garlands." Then he of the pen :
"The lost Roman thing! All together!
Get branches — we're Romans again!"
So they took each boughs in their hands,
Obeying the ancient commands,
When laurel put forth a green feather
And Proserpine gathered her bands.

They marched in a grave, wild measure, )

By Allan Updegraff

Originally posted by [ profile] duathir at Allan Updegraff, 'The Dance Before The Arch'--many thanks!


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