Mostly in a dull rotation
We bear our loads and eat and drink and sleep,
Feeling no tears, knowing no meditation—
Too tired to think, too clogged with earth to weep.

Dimly convinced, poor groping wretches,
Like eyeless insects in a murky pond
That out and out this city stretches,
Away, away, and there is no beyond.

No larger earth, no loftier heaven,
No cleaner, gentler airs to breathe. And yet,
Even to us sometimes is given
Visions of things we otherwhiles forget.

Some day is done, its labour ended,
And as we brood at windows high,
A steady wind from far descended,
Blows off the filth that hid the deeper sky;

There are the empty waiting spaces,
We watch, we watch, unwinking, pale and dumb,
Till gliding up with noiseless paces
Night sweeps o’er all the wide arch: Night has come.

Not that sick false night of the city,
Lurid and low and yellow and obscene,
But mother Night, pure, full of pity,
The star-strewn Night, blue, potent and serene.

O, as we gaze the clamour ceases,
The turbid world around grows dim and small,
The soft-shed influence releases
Our shrouded spirits from their dusty pall.

No more we hear the turbulent traffic,
Not scorned but unremembered is the day;
The Night, all luminous and seraphic,
Has brushed its heavy memories away.

The great blue Night so clear and kindly,
The little stars so wide-eyed and so still,
Open a door for souls that blindly
Had wandered, tunnelling the endless hill;

They draw the long-untraversed portal,
Our souls slip out and tremble and expand,
The immortal feels for the immortal,
The eternal holds the eternal by the hand.

Impalpably we are led and lifted,
Softly we shake into the gulf of blue,
The last environing veil is rifted
And lost horizons float into our view.

Lost lands, lone seas, lands that afar gleam
With a miraculous beauty, faint yet clear,
Forgotten lands of night and star-gleam,
Seas that are somewhere but that are not here.

Borne without effort or endeavour,
Swifter and more ethereal than the wind,
In level track we stream, whilst ever
The fair pale panorama rolls behind.

Now fleets below a trancèd moorland,
A sweep of glimmering immobility;
Now craggy cliff and dented foreland
Pass back and there beyond unfolds the sea.

Now wastes of water heaving, drawing,
Great darkling tracts of patterned restlessness,
With whitened waves round rough rocks mawing
And licking islands in their fierce caress.

Now coasts with capes and ribboned beaches
Set silent ‘neath the canopy sapphirine,
And estuaries and river reaches
Phantasmal silver in the night’s soft shine.
Ah, these fair woods the spirit crosses,
These quiet lakes, these stretched dreaming fields,
These undulate downs with piny bosses
Pointing the ridges of their sloping shields.

These valleys and these heights that screen them,
These tawnier sands where grass and tree are not,
Ah, we have known them, we have seen them
Long, long ago or ever we forgot;

We know them all, these placid countries,
And what the pathway is and what the goal;
These are the gates and these the sentries
That guard the ancient fortress of the soul.

And onward speed we flying, flying,
Over the sundering worlds of hill and plain
To where they rear their heads undying
The unnamed mountains of old days again.

The snows upon their calm still summits,
The chasms, the lines of trees that foot the snow,
Curving like inky frozen comets,
Into the forest-ocean spread below.

The glisten where the peaks are hoarest,
The soundless darkness of the sunken vales,
The folding leagues of shadowy forest,
Wave beyond wave till all distinctness fails.

So invulnerable it is, so deathless,
So floods the air the loveliness of it,
That we stay dazzled, rapt and breathless,
Our beings ebbing to the infinite.

There as we pause, there as we hover,
Moveless in ecstasy, a sudden light
Breaks in our eyes, and we discover
We sit at windows gazing to the night.

Wistful and tired, with eyes a-tingle
Where still the sting of Beauty faintly smarts,
But with our mute regrets there mingle
Thanks for the resurrection of our hearts.

O night so great that will not mock us!
O stars so wise that understand the weak!
O vast consoling hands that rock us!
O strong and perfect tongues that speak!

O night enrobed in azure splendour!
O whispering stars whose radiance falls like dew!
O mighty presences and tender,
You have given us back the dreams our childhood knew!

Lulled by your visions without number,
We seek our beds content and void of pain,
And dreaming drowse and dreaming slumber
And dreaming wake to see the day again.

— 

Town - Charles Baudelaire

From The Three Hills And Other Poems, ed. John Collings Squire

To purify these categories and in them to elevate spirit to truth and freedom, this is…the loftier business of logic.
—  Hegel, 'The Science of Logic' 

“So, it is known that those who transmitted what Muhammad (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) called to of the Religion and Shari’ah, and transmitted what he came with of signs and miracles, are greater than those who transmitted the likes of these from Musa and ‘Isa. Likewise, what he came with of these are, in and of themselves, greater than what Musa and ‘Isa came with. In fact, the one who looks with a sound mind in these times to what the Muslims have of beneficial knowledge and righteous actions, and compares that to what is with the Jews and Christians, will come to know that there is a huge, massive difference between them.

This is because that which is with the Muslims of the Tawhid of Allah, knowledge of His Names and Attributes, His Angels, Prophets, Messengers, the Hereafter, the descriptions of the Paradise and Hell, reward and punishment, promise and threat – all of these are much greater and loftier than that which is with the Jews and Christians, and this is clear to any who look into it.

And that which is with the Muslims of outer and inner acts of worship – such as the five daily prayers, the other prayers, the remembrances and supplications, etc. – are greater and loftier than that which is with the People of the Book. Such is also the case with the laws governing transactions, marriage, legal punishments – that which is with the Muslims is greater and loftier than what the Jews and Christians have.

So, the Muslims are superior to them in regards to every bit of beneficial knowledge and righteous action, and this is evident to anyone with the slightest bit of intelligence, and this does not require much effort to realize…

And every person of intellect admits this, even from the Jews and Christians. They admit that the religion of the Muslims is a true religion, and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and that whoever obeys him enters Paradise. In fact, they even admit that the religion of Islam is better than their own religion, as was mentioned by the philosophers, such as Ibn Sina, etc. The philosophers of the world are agreed that there is no law better than this Law. However, those who refuse to follow it excuse themselves by saying that it is not obligatory for him to follow it, since the Messenger was sent to the unlettered Arabs in exclusion to the People of the Book, and if his religion is true, then our religion is also true, and the paths to Allah are many…”

[Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullah): ‘Majmu’ al-Fatawa’; 4/104-105]

I Think Constantly of Those Who Were Truly Great

by Michael Blumenthal

and, to be perfectly honest, it bums me out.
So many great ones! —libidinal heroes,
idealists, warrior-chieftains, revolutionaries,
fabulists of all sorts, even the great Irish pig farmers
and Armenian raisin growers —and who,
I ask myself, am I by comparison? Calmed
by Valium, urged on by Viagra, uplifted
by Prozac, I go about my daily rounds,
a quotidian member of the quotidian hierarchy,
a Perseus with neither a war nor a best friend,
and sink to the depths of despair
on the broken wings of my own mundanity.

If only some god had given me greatness,
I surely would have made something of it—
perhaps a loftier, more humble poem than this,
or some übermenschliche gesture that would reveal
my superiority to the ordinary beings and things
of this world. But here I am now, one of
the earth’s mere Sancho Panzas, leading
those heroic others through the world on their
magnificent horses, merely turning the page, dreaming
my own small deeds into their magnificent arms.

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Dear Friend,

It’s raining pretty hard now. It’s a battle of being feeling sad and happy. I don’t know which is loftier but I guess this is giving me febrile not knowing I’ve been gushy for these past days. Thinking too much about anything bullshit which is suppose to remain as a thought, not a problem either to be solved. I don’t know why am I loaded with burdens. I’m too young for this. I know. But hell yeah! I’m used to this. Hiding a mask where sadness is much dominant. I’m stupid. But adamantly, I’m looking forward to ameliorate certainty in me which I would love to work on. This is me. Would you still be like to be with me?

Love always,

Joseph 

Basketball returns in 15 days:
The Sacramento Kings have not been in the playoffs since 2006. After showing a much improved skill-set in the FIBA World Cup, will DeMarcus Cousins help lead the Kings back to being a playoff team in the west? And can he actually fullfill his loftier goal of having under five technical fouls per game?

Image via theruination.net

As a writer, what is success to you?

becoming wealthy

becoming famous

gaining worldwide recognition

entertaining my readers

inspiring my readers to write

inspiring other writers to write more

***inspiring other writers to write fanfiction about my own writing***

[ I’ve got lofty dreams… and even loftier goals. =) ]

(grins and goes back to working on novel)

Why Box Trolls is so Inventive (some spoilers!)

So yesterday, I went to go see Boxtrolls, and let me tell you people, it was a FANTASTIC movie. Not only was it wonderfully kid-friendly and creative in the way of animation, but the metaphors that abounded within it were nothing short of superb. So, basically the story is about Boxtrolls that live under a city and come out at night to salvage for discarded items in order to shape their own world. They are friendly and curious, but the villagers have a different belief entirely. One man, Snatcher, is a Red Hat (a lower city official) who wants the position of a White Hat (a loftier position of government). The White hat love to sit in their discussion room all day and “discuss” topics of importance (in other words, eat cheese for hours on end in a frenzied stupor.), and Snatcher wants to be a part of it. He negotiates with the mayor, who agrees that if Snatcher destroys every Boxtroll in the city, he will gain a white hat. This merges in to the main plot of Snatcher’s regime of Boxtroll catchers, who prowl the streets to catch the creatures. The rest of the story is about a young boy who was raised by the kindly trolls, who later goes to save Fish, the troll who raised him, and finds out who he really is (a human) and tries to save the rest of the Boxtrolls from Snatcher’s clutches. Some main elements that really caught my eye include:

Hats: Positions in government. The red hats are the lower officials, and also the militant police force. They misuse their power often to get what they want. The white hats are the higher-ranked officials, such as the Mayor. Though not malicious as some of the red hats are, they are self-absorbed and misguided. The white hats are the ultimate goal for Snatcher.

Cheese: Cheese is a delicacy eaten by the White Hats in their meeting room when they are supposed to be discussing politics. Cheese symbolizes power. And what I found interesting was that Snatcher was lactose intolerant, but desired the cheese nonetheless, extending the cheese metaphor to convey that there are some people (Snatcher) who simply should not be in power at all, because in his case, he swells up like a great purple monster. Some people should not be given power because they are tyrants (the purple monster)

The Boxtrolls: There are several different angles this can take, but from my understanding, the Boxtrolls represent minorities under militant police control. Think of Ferguson. Innocent kids are getting shot simply because they “look like criminals”. The Boxtrolls are all made out by the public to look like bloodthirsty monsters, when in reality they are creative and kind, and even raise a child that is not of their own kind (Eggs, the human). 

The Giant Cheese: Was bought by the White Hats instead of funding a Children’s Hospital. This was one of the more obvious ones, basically a metaphor for how the government focuses on less important issues (typically ones that benefit themselves) instead of focusing on problems that really need attention. 

I’m no scholar (I’m a junior in high school) but if there are metaphors like this in a kid’s movie that I CAN GRASP, then maybe the “white hats” should start paying attention too. These directors knew exactly what they were doing, and this makes me want to support Laika (as well as other animation companies) even more. Boxtrolls was a brilliant movie, and if we want to see more brilliance like this, then please go out to see it. Supporting animators is crucial. Not only are we supporting people doing the jobs they love, but we are supporting the art itself. Animation is a dying art, and we shouldn’t have to keep it on life support.

A little something for my love:

You do so much for me. You take me to nice place and you don’t think twice when I need a lift. I know this is nothing compared, but I decided to do something for you. First, the amazing poems you write me are just.. bah, can you not? So as I am terrible at writting poetry I found two which I want you to cherish:

Poca favilla gran fiamma seconda. – Dante

Ogni altra cosa, ogni pensier va fore, 

E sol ivi con voi rimansi amore. – Petrarca 

I loved you first: but afterwards your love

    Outsoaring mine, sang such a loftier song

As drowned the friendly cooings of my dove.

    Which owes the other most? my love was long,

    And yours one moment seemed to wax more strong;

I loved and guessed at you, you construed me

And loved me for what might or might not be –

    Nay, weights and measures do us both a wrong.

For verily love knows not ‘mine’ or ‘thine;’

    With separate ‘I’ and ‘thou’ free love has done,

         For one is both and both are one in love:

Rich love knows nought of ‘thine that is not mine;’

         Both have the strength and both the length thereof,

Both of us, of the love which makes us one.”

I loved you first: but afterwards your love

by Christina Rossetti

——-**——

"Remember me when I am gone away,

         Gone far away into the silent land;

         When you can no more hold me by the hand,

Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.

Remember me when no more day by day

         You tell me of our future that you plann’d:

         Only remember me; you understand

It will be late to counsel then or pray.

Yet if you should forget me for a while

         And afterwards remember, do not grieve:

         For if the darkness and corruption leave

         A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,

Better by far you should forget and smile

         Than that you should remember and be sad.”

Remember

by Christina Rossetti

Last but not least I made you something to listen when you want. I pilled all these songs (click link) for the last 2 weeks :3 

The best is yet to come

I find it difficult to achieve the delicate balance of being content with where I am whilst striving for loftier goals. I mean, right now I am in a good place but I want so much more from life.

It is not necessary to bore you with what my desires are but I reckon someone out there understands my turmoil.

As a Christian lady, I am disappointed with the lackadaisical attitude of some Christians…

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Lost...

Oh yesternight, I am come home again under doured escort of tears and wonders from places where spending sad and bloodyed hours is the commonplace of it. I have tried not to let the babble of dreams affront my soul, but in remembrance of so fair a dreams world as this, how can I not lend it credence’s? I know not in this tell as to whether it is worth the ear or ink I say here, but for the crimson spill that found its way from so many innocents to the hungry Earth and sea, may be this will find my words strengths for the descript. But I will not be held guilty of stilled tongue when many are so fallen who would scream at stars in the cast of justice away. To not be all the plague of cowards and to descend so marked is repellent to me. I must begin from a loftier height in this saga. Under closed eye was I thus led back to the starting end by a pale shaded wisp, which bid me come. It encircled me as ethereal smoke and vanished its lights away when I regained my mark at the last leaving. Of the place, it has such a fog and fire as I have never beheld entwined with misted shades of a world lost over times stretch. It akined me to a volley fire from loosed cannons under clouds cover, with same in light and report. To this I remain all the more unclear as to the source. All I can grasp of this inferno is while lions roar and fight for their dens, this land was caught as an unwanted child in the struggle. There stands here neither sanctuary nor redeemer. Hope seems here lost. How I have found entrance to this nether world is unknown save for my shadows lead, but you can witness me this as truth, I am no ramping fool, to stamp and brag or swear. This realm of the perpetual doom is all the real in its continuance to my nightly returns as the coming day’s renewal. So to it then I say, as before fog bounds this empire thick with smoke and despair surely there was some order and peace, though there seems no rhyme to its reason now. No proper road or guising sign can be found, and village or hovel, if they exist, is as of now unbeknownst to me. By the standards of the day, man would stamp it is an undiscovered country; wild and untamed. Such places are the lurks of jeopardy unseen and not knowing if you will be the match to the menaces is all the more a dread. Always I seem to be just at the edge of some great calamity. Muffled voices and great cacophonies are near and far and I am seemingly wounded per showing of a shouldered ripped and blooded clock, but pain has not companioned me. Lights lack confounds my inspection of torn flesh and chance says the color may not be from my body. But if that be so, who have I thus engaged in combat and why does memory forsake me? To strain at remembrances is to frustrate me the further. Sparse glimpses of what is here lead me surely. Some memory must send me forth to find…..I know not what. Was ever a feather pulsed forward by unseen winds as then for me? Weariness had me firm in hand and I was surly shadowed, but it had not come forth for battle nor hale. I caught it in ephemeral glimpses, but only at eyes edge. The confound of fog and rains kept me from a enhanced inspection of this shade… or may be the mind plays to want of a companion in such a desolate arena. Fortune may have doused the light of my Charon to the Hades. To that, it has o’ershades of dark cloudy Death as its eternal Sun. Oh how life must surely wither when dailyed with such conditions as here. The ground was a hard sponge, seeming to not drink the waters issuing from the skies above yet there is tree and brush. I am at scopes limit to far see the lands lay. A candled light would have been most welcome, yet I feared what attraction it would summon. That ever yet this land would be held guilty of I would restore it from such judgments. I fear to lessen the unknown hunt will fetch my sepulcher, so I can no longer hold me patient. Such a tale is more and plentiful, but Death hails me to the upside of this reality, so I must withdraw until I have more the conscience for better word. Vouchsafe me to your angels for safe returns.

Christ. I’m a haunt junkie and I’ve been to a lot of crazy places but never before have I been given a safe word before entering an attraction. And as I signed a detailed waiver explaining all the possible things that might be done to me, I have no shame in admitting that this was the first place I was genuinely nervous to enter.

Alone: An Existential Haunting is fairly new to the scene and another in the line of ever-growing “extreme haunts” – attractions that offer full-contact frights. But what separates this from notorious productions like Blackout is that it’s not disgusting or punishing (call me crazy, but the thought of paying a lot of money to have a gun stuck in my face and being forced into acts of torture just doesn’t appeal to me). Alone has a much loftier goal: to fuck with your mind. Picture a haunt run by David Lynch and you’ll have a pretty good idea of what’s in store.

Little did I know that my experience would start well before the event. After signing up to attend, I receive a cryptic e-mail with an address and instructions to “Ask about the Enola Foundation.” I show up to a little shop in Hollywood and the clerk gives me a strange pamphlet with a number to call. It’s clear right off the bat that I’m now mixed up in some strange body-obsessed cult that promises transcendence through flesh. Yikes.

I call the number on the pamphlet and am told that I have been selected to participate in their opening rite. I’m then given instructions to report to the Los Angeles Public Library and am given several call numbers. I head downtown and trace the numbers to the “Anatomy” section on the Science level. Inside one of the Grey’s Anatomy books is a note with further instructions. At the end of the evening, I wind up with an odd token…and even more questions.

The location isn’t revealed until the day before the event and when I arrive at the address, I’m standing in a dank alleyway in a seedy area of downtown Los Angeles. I meet fellow DC writer Sean Decker and the two of us sign our lives away at a desk manned by two cult members. Wondering what the hell we’ve gotten ourselves into, our paranoid horror minds take over and the dread begins to mount. What if this is all a trick? What if we wake up in a bathtub full of ice and missing our kidneys?

It’s the secrecy behind this event that makes it so damn scary…and irresistible. Our names are called and we have to line up in order. Five of us are ushered inside and take a slow elevator ride up to the next floor. My heart is racing. The doors swing open and we are greeted by a representative of the Enola Foundation. Each of us fill out a survey and are immediately put into an orientation ceremony led by a strange looking mystical guru. Suddenly, a bag is thrown over my head and I’m yanked away into total darkness. When the bag is lifted, my group is gone. I’m all alone.

True to its name, there’s no safety in numbers here. You go through the entire haunt on your own – which makes this a far more personal and unnerving experience than you’ll get anywhere else. I won’t dare spoil what’s inside but for 30 minutes, I was grabbed, pushed, held, caressed and made to crawl through a series of surreal set-pieces that messed with my mind and defied all expectations. Dark lighting, eerie music and droning sound design sent my senses running wild. Actors didn’t just know my name, they knew intimate details of my life. There’s no rhyme or reason to any of it other than to screw with your head and the production went to great lengths to eschew everything you expect from a haunt. In fact, the cast and crew did their job so well that when I walked to my car at the end of the night, I wasn’t sure if I was still in the experience or not. And days later, I still can’t get it out of my head.

If you’re tired of traditional haunted houses and are willing to take a ride into the bizarre, Alone is the hottest ticket around. Simply put, you won’t find a better psychological horror experience and I for one can’t wait to see what they have in store next year.

Alone runs from now until Nov 1st. To learn more about the experience and get tickets visit the official Alone Website, and  “like” ALONE on Facebook.

The post Event Report: Welcome to Alone. Your Safe Word is Together. appeared first on Dread Central.

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