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Showing posts from October, 2016

Black Cat by Rainer Maria Rilke, 1875 - 1926

Born in Prague on December 4, 1875, Rainer Maria Rilke is recognized by many as a master of verse   A ghost, though invisible, still is like a place
your sight can knock on, echoing; but here
within this thick black pelt, your strongest gaze
will be absorbed and utterly disappear: just as a raving madman, when nothing else
can ease him, charges into his dark night
howling, pounds on the padded wall, and feels
the rage being taken in and pacified. She seems to hide all looks that have ever fallen
into her, so that, like an audience,
she can look them over, menacing and sullen,
and curl to sleep with them. But all at once as if awakened, she turns her face to yours; and with a shock, you see yourself, tiny, inside the golden amber of her eyeballs suspended, like a prehistoric fly.
Translated by Stephen Mitchell

Autumn in Prague - Czech Republic

The Czech Republic gets ready for winter

October in the Czech Republic

Europe is the home of Halloween, where witches and the Church come together for one night--All Hallows Eve. Tom Chivers wrote about Halloween in The Guardian, Oct, 31, 2009:

The origins of the festival
Hallowe’en seems to have grown around the ancient Gaelic festival of Samhain, marking the end of the light half of the year and the beginning of the dark half.
Samhain was in part a sort of harvest festival, when the last crops were gathered in for the winter, and livestock killed and stored. But the pagan Celts also believed it was a time when the walls between our world and the next became thin and porous, allowing spirits to pass through. The practice of wearing spooky costumes may have its roots in that belief: dressing up as a ghost to scare off other ghosts seems to have been the idea. Where the name comes from
The name Hallowe’en is a shortening of All Hallows’ Even, or All Hallows’ Evening. All Hallows is an old term for All Saints’ Day (Hallow, from the Old English “halig”, or holy,…