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.

25 April 2015

ANZAC Day Centenary

In the beginning was the Word :

the Word, extract from wikipedia :

John 1:1 is the first verse in the Gospel of John. The King James Version of the verse reads, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God". The phrase "the Word" (a translation of the Greek word "Logos") is widely interpreted as referring to Jesus, as indicated in other verses later in the same chapter.
In the beginning was the Word :

Black Swan extract from wikipedia :

Ernest Lalor "Ern" Malley was a fictitious poet and the central figure in Australia's most celebrated literary hoax. He and his entire body of work were created in one day in 1943 by writers James McAuley and Harold Stewart in order to hoax Max Harris and Angry Penguins, the modernist magazine Harris had founded and edited, and now co-edited with John Reed of Heide.

James McAuley and Harold Stewart decided to perpetrate a hoax on Harris and Angry Penguins by submitting to the magazine nonsensical poetry, which they felt captured the worst of modernist tendencies, under the guise of a fictional poet. They came up with a fictional biography for the poet "Ern Malley", who, they claimed, had died the year before at the age of 25. They chose the name "Malley" as a pun on the word Mallee, denoting a class of Australian native vegetation and a bird, the Malleefowl. Then, in one afternoon, they wrote his entire body of work: 17 poems, none longer than a page, and all intended to be read in sequence under the title The Darkening Ecliptic.

Their writing style, as they described it, was to write down the first thing that came into their heads, lifting words and phrases from the Concise Oxford Dictionary, a Collected Shakespeare, and a Dictionary of Quotations: "We opened books at random, choosing a word or phrase haphazardly. We made lists of these and wove them in nonsensical sentences. We misquoted and made false allusions. We deliberately perpetrated bad verse, and selected awkward rhymes from a Ripman's Rhyming Dictionary." They also included many bits of their own poetry, though in a deliberately disjointed manner.

The first poem in the sequence, Durer: Innsbruck, 1495, was an unpublished serious effort by McAuley, lightly edited to appeal to Harris:
I had often cowled in the slumbrous heavy air,
Closed my inanimate lids to find it real,
As I knew it would be, the colourful spires
And painted roofs, the high snows glimpsed at the back,
All reversed in the quiet reflecting waters –
Not knowing then that Durer perceived it too.
Now I find that once more I have shrunk
To an interloper, robber of dead men's dream,
I had read in books that art is not easy
But no one warned that the mind repeats
In its ignorance the vision of others. I am still
The black swan of trespass on alien waters.
     - Ern Malley

In the beginning was the Word :

WO R.D. Tyndall

In 1944, James McAuley and Harold Stewart were both in the Army Directorate of Research and Civil Affairs.
In 1944, this blog writer's father W O R.D. Tyndall was in the RAAF, a tail gunner on the Black Swan as it trespassed on alien waters.

photo : W.R. Anderson, from the Australian War Memorial
info below from : B-24 Liberator Australia

In the beginning was the Word :

The Liberator

Digri, Bengal, India. 1944-11-28. Group portrait of some of the RAAF members in No. 159 (Liberator) Squadron RAF of Eastern Air Command's Strategic Air Force, operating in India, beside the aircraft nicknamed 'Black Swan'. This unit has more Australians on strength than any other unit, but all are not shown. 

Back Row:- Warrant Officer (WO) H. D. Scott of Launceston, Tas; WO W. G. Hazard of Lower Ferntree Gully, Vic; WO S. J. Gregory of Granville, NSW; WO R. D. Tyndall of Shepparton, Vic; WO A. L. Baker of Wagga, NSW; WO J. W. Gribble of Abbotsford, Vic; Pilot Officer W. R. Anderson of North Perth, WA; WO A. R. O'Malley of Elizabeth Bay, NSW; WO L. M. Peerman of Paddington, Qld; Flight Sergeant (Flt Sgt) C. Fristrom of Caloundra, Qld; Pilot Officer L. A. Hendy of Elwood, Vic; Flying Officer (FO) A. J. Beattie of Tallangatta, Vic; FO C. Bowden of Indooroopilly, Qld; Flt Sgt J. V. Shillito of Murchison, Vic; WO C. R. Delaine of Winkie, SA; FO V. E. Willing of Rose Bay, NSW.

Front Row:- WO K. R. Weller of Thornleigh, NSW; FO S. J. Smith of Moss Vale, NSW; Flt Sgt J. P. Donnellan of Kelmscott, SA; Flt Sgt A. L. P. Fisher of Queens Park, WA; WO W. H. Wheeler of Bellevue Hill, NSW; WO K. Brandon of Eagle Junction, Qld; WO A. R. Williams of Richmond River, NSW; WO R. K. Davey of Swan Hill, Vic; FO W. R. Wright of Walkerville, SA; Flt Sgt F. G. Barclay of Mortdale, NSW; Flt Sgt R. M. Edwards of Portland, Vic; FO L. Marsh of East Coburg, Vic.Back Row:- F/O K. Clifton-Dobing DFM, F/Eng. F/Sgt K. Patten, WAG. F/Lt W. Andrews, Co-Pilot. F/Lt Roy Beattie DFM, Captain. F/Sgt L. Devereux, Air Gunner. F/Sgt A. Hogg, Air Gunner. F/Lt H. Stroud, Navigator
In the beginning was the Word :
A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...