Friday, May 11, 2012

At The Table

At The Table

With my hands, my all,
I explore the island shapes
of your connections,
sweep the longitudes
of your limbs and press my words
deep into the knots
I find inside you.

You are swathed in my clean sheets
and warmed with sweet oil
you glow under me,
under handiwork passed down
to me by other lovers.

April 6, 2010 9:37 AM

"We have to endure the discordance between imagination and fact. It is better to say, "I am suffering," than to say, "This landscape is ugly."
- Simone Weil

Simone Weil 3 February 1909 in Paris, France – 24 August 1943 in Ashford, Kent, England) was a French philosopher, Christian mystic, and social activist. Weil's whole life was marked by an exceptional compassion for the suffering of others; at the age of five, she refused to eat sugar after she heard that soldiers fighting WWI had to go without. She died from malnutrition during WWII after refusing to eat more than the minimal rations she believed were available to soldiers at the time. After completing her education Weil became a professor. She taught intermittently throughout the 1930s - she took several breaks due to poor health and to devote herself to political activism. Weil was politically active from early childhood: her activism included helping unions to organise and work together collaboratively, involvement with Marxists and Anarchists, fighting in the Spanish Civil War, and spending more than a year working as a labourer so she could better understand the working class. She sometimes gave away almost her entire income and lived in the most frugal of circumstances, though she did occasionally allow herself foreign holidays. Unusually among twentieth century left-leaning intellectuals, she became more religious and inclined towards mysticism as her life progressed, rather than less so. Weil wrote throughout her life, though most of her writings did not attract much attention until after her death. She was later to become the subject of extensive scholarship across a wide range of fields: a meta study from the University of Calgary found that between 1995 and 2012, over 2500 new scholarly works had been published about her. While sometimes described as odd, humourless and irritating, she inspired great affection in many of those who knew her. Albert Camus described her as "the only great spirit of our times".

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