Sunday Scenes: March 19, 2017

Some individuals pass by a scene like this and pay no attention to it. Personally, I find the beauty in it.

Yes, the tree has died, but it has left its mark on the earth. It has decayed over time. Its limbs are bent and hunched. Its branches stretch and twist every which way, much like elderly individuals appear to us, at times.

The color of life has faded, but the aura of what once was still remains. I found beauty in the branches, branches of life, and found the comparison to our own aging to be humbling.

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Red and Yellow Rose

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Truths and roses have thorns about them. -Henry David Thoreau

 

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Books, Trees, Etc.

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I have read several books since the beginning of 2017.  Here is a list of them:

Moon glow, by Michael Chabon
An Unnecessary Woman, by Rabih Alameddine
Nutshell, by Ian McEwan
Judas, by Amos Oz
Frantumaglia, A Writer’s Journey, by Elena Ferrante
Women Heroes of World War II, by Kathryn J. Atwood

I am currently reading Arch of Triumph, by Erich Maria Remarque. I have read two other books that he wrote: All Quiet on the Western Front, and wrote The Night in Lisbon.

I was away for two weeks. I visited my daughter and her family in Washington. It was a wonderful two weeks, filled with joy and love. What more can one ask for!

I hope to post more during 2017. Time seemed to get away from me during 2016.

winter-tree

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Remember…

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Another day is upon us.  Let us take a moment to remember what was, what is, and what might come.

Today we lost a woman of great strength and humaneness.  Yaffa Eliach has died.  She created “The Tower of Faces” in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

“The Tower of Faces” is so profound.  Each time I have seen it, I am left speechless, filled with awe and deep respect for Yaffa Eliach’s tremendous efforts in creating the memorial.  The photographs speak wonders of the individuals, times gone by, a collective history, moments in living, lives lost due to hatred.

One cannot walk through the immense exhibit without it affecting them intensely.

Thank you.

Rest in Peace, Yaffa Eliach.

~~~~~

Today, I remember Kristallnacht.

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On November 9th and 10th, 1938, Kristallnacht (an intense series of attacks on Jews fostered by the Nazi party paramilitary) became known as the “Night of Broken Glass”. The glass storefronts of the Jewish-owned businesses were totally shattered, by both the paramilitary and by local citizens. The interior of Fasanenstrasse Synagogue in Berlin was destroyed, along with so many other structures.

At least 91 Jews were killed in the attacks, and a further 30,000 arrested and incarcerated in concentration camps.  Jewish homes, hospitals, and schools were ransacked, as the attackers demolished buildings with sledgehammers.  Over 1,000 synagogues were burned (95 in Vienna alone), and over 7,000 Jewish businesses destroyed or damaged.”

Remember…

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Sunday Scenes: November 6, 2016

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Yesterday morning turned out to be a beautiful, sunny day.  The sky was illuminated with clouds and blueness.  Contrary to the grey within the clouds, the sun was shining brightly, and within thirty minutes those grey clouds turned to perfectly white loveliness.

 

 

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To the left of the fence is the South Fork Trail, taken yesterday morning while walking.  There is no sign of life in the photo (other than nature’s beauty), but within one hour, there were marathon runners to the left of the fence, along the trail.  I didn’t take photographs of the runners.  I was there to strictly cheer them on.  Sometimes it is more important to watch than to photograph a scene.

It was quite the sight to see.  There was an abundance of color from the running outfits, and an abundance of feet.  Having run the L.A. Marathon in 1994, I appreciate the effort, training and dedication it takes to not only run, but finish, a marathon.

Here’s hoping your week is a good one!

 

 

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Review: Kaddish for an Unborn Child

Kaddish for an Unborn Child, by Imre Kertesz, was a difficult book, in the sense that the narrator was rambling, repetitiously, due to his stream of consciousness.

The novel opens with the word ‘No!’  It is an answer to a question asked him, the question being did he have a child.   He also answered his wife the same way, when she wanted a child.  From there the reader is led through the narrator’s bleak, dark and depressed outlook on life and living.

The narrator is a writer.  Within the ramblings the sentences run into each other, as his thoughts unfold on the pages.  He tries to illuminate all of his thoughts and feelings, often repeating what he has just stated.  This is due to the workings of his mind, and the fact he has an urgency to get it all out in the open.  This urgency is what keeps him alive, literally.  He has much to criticize regarding his life, including his childhood.

The narrator compares his abusive and restricted childhood to his existence in Auschwitz.  Rules and the oppressive environment almost seem normal to him, coming from his controlled adolescent upbringing.  Once liberated his perceptions regarding daily life continue in the same vein.  He encloses himself within the walls of isolation.

His routine continues to be a somewhat confined existence, as he transcends from being a Holocaust camp prisoner, to living for years sheltered from life in a rented room.  He compares his living arrangement to that of the camps, in the sense that he has been restricted and limited in space, and therefore in daily life.

Of course, much of his limitations have been self-induced repercussions and extensions of the Holocaust.  Once he marries, he ponders the issues of an apartment with his wife, and how he has never thought of spaciousness, furniture, this or that.  The rented room was self-contained, with all of the essentials provided.  His pen was his life’s companion.  He had need for nothing else.

I won’t delve into the story line any further.  It was enough to get through the novel in its entirety.  It was an emotionally, laborious read in many aspects, reinforcing the Holocaust and its mental and emotional effects and affects on those who survive, those who are generational survivors, and on those who are victims of a survivor’s bleak and dark mindset.  In this case, his wife was a victim of the narrator’s mindset and his demons.

Within the darkness, I found Kaddish for an Unborn Child to be an excellent resource on the philosophical and psychological aspects of humanity’s, Holocaust nightmare.

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