2023/02/27 #DailyWrittenOOM

Seven shorn pinnacles of latticed angle-iron stood, the teeth of the anchored. Wild breath sweetens on the brim of the standing, braced with united screw threads. Foam of the unkempt deep wades onto the lap of the earth in time to drink of its drought to the glittering dregs. The disco ball hangs like the spider’s egg sac, a pregnant droplet dry and full of life. Tracing the warm lode through the grin of ill savour, one who rocks the dory is with us. Soon the collar will close about the stage, the veil fall across the crisscrossing thinkers, and a rail in the floor will carry all through the ears to the shorn pinnacle, the iron struts of the cold theatre.

2023/02/27 #DailyWrittenOOM

2023/02//26 #DailyWrittenOOM

Slivers in a scourging wind found my safe square and swept it to the border. Today, rebuilding the tower of lenses brick by bar, I drank of the winter sun in the same chorus. The white painting on the windows, in answering, file past the gate bar I swung to a bolt, but the legion of fine particles would not release my wrist from the tendrils I had woven second.

Bearing of the compass: going hard in the orchard of long moss, the touch as of unthinking fur in the obscurity of groping night. Running my cool wrist along, I find the lashing slivers again.

2023/02//26 #DailyWrittenOOM

2023/02/25 #SabbathPosts

Should we read the “Old Testament”? Should we follow the law and the prophets?

What is the law and the prophets?

“Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.” (Mt 7)

So, in other words, the golden rule is the “Old Testament”. If it isn’t important to keep and follow the law and the prophets, then it isn’t important to love your neighbour.

“If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well” (Ja 2)

“Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am Yahweh.” (Le 19)

“Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” (Ro 13)

The Geneva translators attached a note to this verse:

“For the whole Law commandeth nothing else, but that we love God and our neighbor. But seeing Paul speaketh here of the duties we owe one to another, we must restrain this word, Law to the second Table.”

Not so; they propose adding to what God has written instead of either confessing or changing their lack of understanding what he has written.

What is the first commandment of the Ten? “Thou shalt have no other Gods before me.” What is the last? “Thou shalt not covet.” What does Paul say of covetousness in Col 3? It is idolatry.

As Christ said, “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto the least of these by brethren, ye have done it unto me.” This is what he meant when he said “Love thy neighbour” is “like unto” the command “Love Yahweh”: as man is made in the likeness of God, so the second of the Two great commandments is like the first: to keep the one, you must keep the other, and keeping the other is to keep the one. Thus indeed, as God said, every commandment is comprehended in the second of the Two great commandments, including the greatest command.

“This is the law and the prophets.”

As a note, the uncircumcised were never generally commanded to become circumcised, and are in this age commanded not to enter the covenant of circumcision:

“Is any man called being circumcised? let him not become uncircumcised. Is any called in uncircumcision? let him not be circumcised.” (1Cor 7)

2023/02/25 #SabbathPosts

2023/02/24 #DailyWrittenOOM

Before the camera stood the totem of small repeating raised triangular wings, thick and bound, made and covered in carpet of coarse synthetic turf green, and greying embroidery bronze filling it with texture of tightly knitted and thinly chained wire wool. This could never fall, for the core of a palm tree, though it could never have been guessed, reared it to its height. No faces appeared in its pattern of innumerable joints and ants’ nests of detail and order. No straight line, however small, could be found except in manifold general trends. The eye and gaze hovered, slipping, less than half a millimetre from its detailed rind, its covering binding, impossible to reach closer and deeper with such a thing as sight. A haze of sharp and dim focus abrades the thought of it as seen, and it stands still, and cannot be looked away from, for it is before the camera.

2023/02/24 #DailyWrittenOOM

2023/02/23 #DailyWrittenOOM

Tremors of water grain turning granular over the dome, slipping over with a whisper of dust, curling as hair. They thrust down the fanning beams, the scattered pockets eaten into the stone that I left for mothers to care. Dream silver fell from melting to pierce the back of my eyelids and escape the room through ten hundred thousand windows in the wind.

I arrayed carefully the sheets and bolts of the master’s dyed carapace, to find the scoundrel dead for the forehead of mitres. Grim silt settled granular layers across it, for all the world like the furrows in my darling’s field in Seville. Tremors spread out from there, pinning down the curling dust, and we are under the beams again for home.

2023/02/23 #DailyWrittenOOM

2023/02/22 #DailyWrittenOOM

A bird neglecting its wings in sport skids down the slanted roof of the sky on a dusty piece of cardboard. Within, a copper closet rings with the concourse, rubbing shoulders and vibrating tread, voices match and mismatch a wall of colour picking samples; I receive a nosebleed on board the high Vimana.

Cut through the dull brown skin of the potato to reveal the crisp oil-slick iridescence beneath, and the smell of rain on incense rods. Jumbled leaves of tile scale the broad lizard, each of its many legs the strut to girder the ground; but the ground is far, far below. Nascent smells from under a bird’s dusty feathers broaden the high roof, the slanted Vimana sides, sliding above the flattened rays of iridescent incense vibrating beneath us, beneath the great tread that rings with the jumbled voices innumerable.

2023/02/22 #DailyWrittenOOM

2023/02/21 #DailyWrittenOOM

Governor beetles ramped on the crowd, circled and spun on the multi-cloned chessboards as whirligigs on a still lake. Bright lights gleamed in the background, the stars were pictured on the high walls, a wing spread abroad overshadowed the bowers and arbours that had no verdure. Rembrandt’s rhapsody tangled between my chewing teeth; while members ever recall nights in the Mexican draw, wilting froward faces of lettuce frown and brown, talling the grey cases in two-by-two stacks.

Brain felt matted between the grates to dry indoors with the hand gale, twisted sharpeners stashed under the threshold cry out; another white keeping in the annex braved the membrane to speak to faces. Sacked potato meal sprayed from a height on the breadth of the chessboards, turned them edge to edge for the palm of a circling wing, diverse from tiles in a simple game. While the crowd departs, others sweep up the shavings from the high walls.

2023/02/21 #DailyWrittenOOM

2023/02/20 #DailyWrittenOOM

Behind a house, a square, trimmed grass lawn, flowerpots in the corners, a short white picket fence at the back with a gate. A path of fine tan gravel leads respectably straight through the gate, beyond which the grass continues, no less trimmed. A yard wide is this space beyond the fence, and the far side is bordered by white plastic flowerbed edging. Past this, a few inches of grey bedrock and undomesticated bits of stone, and then day turns to profound darkness in the space of a few inches. As far as the eye can see in either direction, the grass and gardens end at that edging, and a strip of lifeless wilderness ground is exposed, like the skin of a workman’s finger pulled back from the quick of the nail, and that vanishes quickly into sunless night. Upwards, the blue of the sky and the snowy stretches of cloud also vanish into the shadow. It would not seem so dark if it was black as black paper, or even the space between stars – in the depths and distance of the obscurity, as in a mine, a well, or train tunnel, straining eyes can sense that there are shapes: near or far, large or small, common or alien, no more can be discerned.

A “shore” residence. Voices are heard in front of the house. A child comes out of the back door to water the flowers with a watering can; a sparkly pinwheel spins silently in a brief tasteless breeze that drifts out of the blackness.

2023/02/20 #DailyWrittenOOM

2023/02/19 #DailyWrittenOOM

There was not enough light to make the surface above him gleam at all, only enough to make it distinct in the surrounding gloom, and turn it to a dull opaque red, like a sheet of plastic, moving with gossamer fluidity, tingled by the scattered drops falling like sparse rain from the utterly unseen structures above the surface.

He worked with quickly numbing fingers, and with just enough light to see the inset group of handles, clamps, and levers. Struggling to fit the rod-key in the right place, he found his mind was beginning to act drunk from lack of air. All at once, the inset controls dropped downwards on hinges, twisting his fingers; he hadn’t noticed when he finished undoing them.

The suddenly open chute jerked at him with a suction like a living grip. The shadows of silt it drew in made the dark aperture look as though it had instantaneously sprouted tufts of dark hair. His hands were too near, and he was too distracted: the current caught his sore fingertips like a vacuum cleaner catching a loose string on a scarf: his arms shot in, followed by his shoulders, body, and legs, hyperextending his knee on the edge so quickly was he whipped inside.

As quickly over as begun, he was then floating on his back in a pool of water that moved aimlessly around him. It was just as well that he could breathe, as the passage through the chute had driven what breath he had left from his body. The water was moving? It was being moved, by many things which filled it: snakes, of every size, a slithering swarm suspended in the dark medium like roping, crooked fish, framing his supine body as he drifted motionless.

“Ah…” he whispered to the lithe teeming that he lay in, “to be surrounded by unlooked for friends in such a time; ‘tis the breath of the heart.”

2023/02/19 #DailyWrittenOOM

2023/02/18 #SabbathPosts

{Edited from a conversation about writing “perfect characters”.}

I believe there are truly noble people and characters. Also I believe there are perfect people, though obviously they’re rare (and not “without sin” – I’ll explain).

Some take the doctrine that “all have sinned” and “there is none that doeth good and sinneth not” to be a kind of mandatory cynicism, that they must believe everyone does small evil acts or underlying evil acts and they just aren’t seen or are all considered equal in God’s eyes. They also often categorise an exorbitant amount of faults and flaws and things (like not getting up quick enough in the morning) as moral sins to further bolster this idea, and often fall into thinking anything that is less good than another thing is therefore bad, which is of course unreasonable.

The Bible also says “they also do no iniquity” and “he that is born of God sinneth not” and “in whom is no guile”. And it tells us that unborn children have done nothing, either good or evil, yet also that we are conceived in sin. Obviously these aren’t contradictory, but rather talking about two different things.

I think it is clear that “all have sinned” and the doctrine that none are “without sin” are referring to the sinfulness of the heart; the best people understand that they are their own worst enemy when trying to do right. If they were without sin, they would have no difficulty, no struggle, no enticement of their own lust, and outward temptation would not be able to allure them at all, like Christ.

Our sinfulness is proven whenever people leave themselves without check, and of course there is the fact that you don’t have to teach children to do wrong. The sinfulness of our hearts is our fault (after all, if it wasn’t, then neither would any action be that arises from it), but those who do not indulge their sinful hearts (such as little children, who haven’t really done anything at all), are those who are the righteous, who “sin not”, and “do no iniquity”, and these are those whose sinfulness is washed away by the blood of the Lamb.

“He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.” – Pr 28

“Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” – Mt 18

Righteous people often commit small sins at times (sins “not unto death” as John puts it), and that also isn’t what it is talking about when it says a righteous man sinneth not. Those who break the least commandments still will enter the kingdom of heaven, though they receive less honour.

If “there is none righteous” isn’t talking about our sinful tendencies, which we must (and can) fight against and control, then we have a problem: when it expounds on this doctrine it goes on to say:

“there is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: their feet are swift to shed blood: destruction and misery are in their ways: and the way of peace have they not known: there is no fear of God before their eyes.” – Ro 3

If this is not describing what we tend to, then everyone is specifically an unbeliever (thus unsaved), murderer, liar, and curser (weird that that isn’t a word 🤔); and obviously it has nothing to do with the false idea that small sins are equal to great sins in God’s eyes (which idea is to accuse God of injustice, and to give license for the heathen to mock his wrath).

I would say that the most perfect person was Moses, who was the counterpart of Jesus: “a prophet like unto me”, who was “faithful in all his house”, so that him and Christ are pictured as a house and its builder. Moses was so perfect that speaking a single sentence unadvisedly, “Must we fetch you water out of this rock?” was punished with great wrath. Others would be Noah, Daniel, Job, Samuel, Elijah, and John the baptist. Joseph is one that I often think of first.

In fiction the first one that comes to mind would be G. A. Henty’s protagonists, which are basically meant to picture what he would consider to be the best conduct in their various situations. I disagree with Henty on certain moral points (a major one would be that he sees transvestism as a joke), and his characters are rather plain, but on the whole it is good to read about his good example characters.

The first character who comes to mind that is a truly noble character, who is also interesting and endearing, would be Sam Gamgee.

(The main fault I dislike in bad film adaptation is corrupting good characters; if one sees the character as real – which is the point – then it is slander. End side note.)

Other such characters would be Puddleglum, Sybil (in Charles Williams’ The Greater Trumps), Scrooge (after his reformation), the Master Monstruwacan (in William Hope Hodgson’s The Night Land), and Beowulf.

2023/02/18 #SabbathPosts