IN THE NEWS
"You can tell more about a person by what he says about others than you can by what others say about him."
A few years ago I saw my first glacier. I was on a trip to Alaska with my family before my father died and he had always dreamed of seeing the region; so we were happy we could do this one last trip to fulfill it for him. We cruised through the Inside Passage past glimmering mountains of cerulean blue ice, drove through part of the Yukon Territory of Canada by turquoise lakes, and hiked close to a receding glacier. It was breathtaking, yet throughout the journey a specter of sorrow accompanied me.... full article
"Nothing in the world can be compared to the human face. It is a land one can never tire of exploring. There is no greater experience in a studio than to witness the expression of a sensitive face under the mysterious power of inspiration. To see it animated from inside, and turning into poetry."
W. S. Merwin, a formidable American poet who for more than 60 years labored under a formidable poetic yoke: the imperative of using language — an inescapably concrete presence on the printed page — to conjure absence, silence and nothingness, died on Friday at his home near Haiku-Pauwela, Hawaii. He was 91.... full article
"There is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in."
It’s probably not a good idea to give any authority the middle finger. But if you’re in the US and want to express yourself crudely, your right to do so has been affirmed by a panel of three judges in a charming Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals opinion issued on March 13.... full article
"Every human being on this earth is born with a tragedy, and it isn't original sin. He's born with the tragedy that he has to grow up... a lot of people don't have the courage to do it."
Israeli historian Benny Morris doesn’t do things by half. The footnotes of his new book on the 30-year genocide of Christians by their Turkish rulers, cowritten with his colleague Dror Zeevi, take up more than a fifth of the 640-page work. “It was nine years, a long haul,” he admitted to me this week, with an audible sigh over the phone. And he talks about the involvement of Ataturk in the later stages of the genocide of around 2.5 million Christians of the Ottoman empire; how “religions do drive people to excessive violence” – he has in mind the Turks, Isis, the Crusades – and even condemns the Arabs for their inability to criticise themselves.... full article