Beautiful Words #7

Some beautiful words for your week . . .

A mandarin fell in love with a courtesan. “I shall be yours,” she told him, “when you have spent a hundred nights waiting for me, sitting on a stool, in my garden, beneath my window.” But on the ninety-ninth night, the mandarin stood up, put his stool under his arm, and went away. (Roland Barthes; A Lover’s Discourse, Fragments)

“Death Barged In

In his Russian greatcoat
slamming open the door
with an unpardonable bang,
and he has been here ever since.

He changes everything,
rearranges the furniture,
his hand hovers
by the phone;
he will answer now, he says;
he will be the answer.

Tonight he sits down to dinner
at the head of the table
as we eat, mute;
later, he climbs into bed between us.

Even as I sit here,
he stands behind me
clamping two
colossal hands on my shoulders
and bends down
and whispers to my neck,
From now on,
you write about me.” (Slamming Open the Door, Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno)

“Until there arrives a great master of the art of writing who will choose to invest the facts of Indian history with the glamour of literature, and make the truth more attractive than even history itself.” (Bloomsbury: A House of Lions by Leon Edel, quoting Lytton Strachey)