Richibi’s Weblog

Just another weblog

Month: November, 2015

“upon considering large radishes”- me‏

Photo on 2015-11-26 at 6.28 PM

outsized radishes (November 26, 2015)


upon considering large radishes

I wrote a letter to my love
and marketwards I dropped it,
a little urchin must’ve picked it up
and put it in hir pocket

red peppers there, potatoes, pears,
parsleys, persimmons, parsnips,
cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, celery,
broccoli, rosemary, thyme, and turnips

but the radishes

what big radishes you’ve got, I thought,
the better, I deemed, to adorn my salads,
some red, some pink, some cream, some white,
all primed for my discriminating palate

presented gingerly in leafy green,
sold in inorganic, incongruous thus, individual blue elastics,
a brand name, the merchant’s label,
a small but indestructible, and glaring, plastic

something, of course, outrageous a pound,
or gram, at the indifferent check-out counter,
which, however dogmatic, I invariably pay,
to avoid any indecorous, unpleasant encounter

whatever is under my belt, no one can take away,
I’ve preached, propounded, promoted, pronounced,
before every filet mignon I’ve enjoyed
which another might’ve dutifully renounced

later, slicing these rarities, positively Swiftian,
I thought, verily Brobdingnagian, enormous,
pinwheels on my variety of vivid vegetables,
golf balls on my artfully distributed lettuce

what are they doing, though, to our planet,
momentarily I wondered, however impotently, I’ll admit,
having long ago succumbed to proliferating produce misfits,
with the advent of broccolini and, gosh, multicoloured carrots

my salad, with roasted prawns, and an
oil and vinegar vinaigrette, was to die, incidentally,
though not a word from the urchin,
nor from my love, not, I suppose, unnaturally, neither unexpectedly

may all your vegetables be ever so amazing



“Suite Française” (2014)

 "Madonna and Child Pentaptych" - Luca di Tommè Madonna and Child Pentaptych

Luca di Tommè


Suite française“, had it not been for
its musical associations, would’ve
been called a “quintette”

a suite is, of course, a series of five
dance movements, a sarabande, a
minuet, a gigue, for instance, most
commonly with reference to Bach’s
Baroque masterpieces

which is to say that without its dance
implications, a suite would’ve been
called simply a sonata with five
movements, or a duet, trio, quartet,
and so forth, depending on the
participating instruments

in fiction, a sequence of five books
equals a quintet, see Durrell’s
Avignon Quintet“, for instance

in art, five panels are called a
pentaptych, see above

five books had been intended for her
Suite française“, but in 1942 their
author, Irène Némirovsky, was arrested
for being Jewish, and died later at
Auschwitz, she’d completed only two
of her intended manuscripts, a tragic
account of day-to-day life during the
Second World War

these texts were only discovered by her
daughters in 1998, who then had them
published in 2002, in just one volume
called Suite française

the superb movie came out last year

it’s a whiff of another era, a
recollection of things past

also a timely consideration of the
flawed foundations of any occupation,
I thought


psst: incidentally, in French, capital
letters are eschewed – gesundheit –
after the first initial, therefore
the French title, Suite française“,
sports a lower case f

the film, Suite Française uses
the English construction


Polonaise in F# minor, opus 44 – Frédéric Chopin

"The Monument to Chopin in the Luxembourg Gardens" - Henri Rousseau

The Monument to Chopin in the Luxembourg Gardens (1909)

Henri Rousseau


a short while ago, my sister touted,
virtually of course, an up-and-coming
pianist, from around the corner,
relatively, from where she lives

Charles Richard-Hamelin was born in
Lanaudière, Quebec, whereas she’s
been living in Montreal forever, apart
from a stint in Timmins, Ontario, where
we were both born, at least a generation
before Shania Twain put it on the map

I left in a hurry, she followed
somewhat less urgently, a condition
of an intermediary marriage, which
engendered a miracle, my single,
but extraordinary, nephew, though
not much else

at his website, Charles Richard-Hamelin
delivers a few examples of his talent, I
listened to a couple of his Chopins, was
especially impressed by their structure,
the way Chopin imbues strict Classical
conditions with melting, Romantic,
sentiment, the very ideal, in my
estimation, of poetry

you’ll note in the Polonaise he plays
the adherence to tonality, never a
melodic line out of place, a strict
tempo, not ever indulgent, or maudlin,
despite evident emotional appeals,
and the recurrence of the original
theme after an however intoxicating
digression, giving subsistence to an
otherwise flight of aimless airs, out
of any context

music gives coherence, order, to an
otherwise inchoate, inscrutable world,
Classical music represents the original
rhythm of the heartbeat – time, regularity,
logic, the possibility of understanding,
the foundation of our present Western
culture, for better, of course, or for
worse, if not, indeed, of our very
species – defrayed of language’s inherent
ambiguities, its malleability, elasticity,
the indeed outright potential for
duplicity it accords the spoken, or
written, word

music is not just entertainment, it is
a philosophy, Apollo’s most transparent