David Jones, artist and poet (1895-1974) begins his PREFACE TO THE ANATHEMATA :

'I have made a heap of all that I could find.' (1) So wrote Nennius, or whoever composed the introductory matter to Historia Brittonum. He speaks of an 'inward wound' which was caused by the fear that certain things dear to him 'should be like smoke dissipated'. Further, he says, 'not trusting my own learning, which is none at all, but partly from writings and monuments of the ancient inhabitants of Britain, partly from the annals of the Romans and the chronicles of the sacred fathers, Isidore, Hieronymous, Prosper, Eusebius and from the histories of the Scots and Saxons although our enemies . . . I have lispingly put together this . . . about past transactions, that [this material] might not be trodden under foot'. (2)

(1) The actual words are coacervavi omne quod inveni, and occur in Prologue 2 to the Historia.
(2) Quoted from the translation of Prologue 1. See The Works of Gildas and Nennius, J.A.Giles, London 1841.

04 May 2011

Hit Show : Theatre of the Actors of Regard

BIG NEWS : Osama Bin Laden killed by US hit squad

The front page of today's AGE depicts NOT the raid on Bin Laden's compound in Pakistan but rather those who authorised the raid, transfixed in group regard.

TENSION is etched on the faces of those huddled in the White House Situation Room, including that of the United States' 44th Commander-in-Chief.

Barack Obama, crouching forward in his seat, tense and uneasy, is joined by members of his security team as they monitor events unfolding half a globe away in Pakistan on Sunday afternoon.

Defence Secretary Robert Gates, square-jawed, braces with arms folded; Secretary of State Hillary Clinton clasps her hand to her mouth as if to almost gasp; at top left Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, stands resolutely alongside National Security Adviser Tom Donilon and Mr Obama's suited ''Mr Fix-it'', chief of staff Bill Daley. According to The New York Times, Vice-President Joe Biden even fingered his rosary beads.

How the President tracked the end of bin Laden
4 May 2011 | THE AGE | Simon Mann, Washington

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