quinta-feira, 28 de janeiro de 2010

Laibach - Across the Universe

ARTMargins Home Archive
Laibach: The Instrumentality of the State Machine Print E-mail
Winifred Griffin (Minneapolis)
Monday, 23 August 1999 17:43
Laibach, 'The Instrumentality of the State Machine, MB7' (1983).Laibach and NSK analyze nationalism through the aesthetic dimension. By placing "national and subnational" symbols alongside each other, we demonstrate their "universality". That is, in the very process of one nation defining its difference against the other, it frequently uses the same, or almost the same, kind of symbols and rhetoric as the other.

(--Laibach, from on-line interviews)

Laibach is a musical group that first began performing in the mining town of Trbovlje in central Slovenia in 1980. With Tito's death that year, the future of Yugoslavia became uncertain, and throughout the 1980s youth subcultures engaged in agitation in the sphere of civil society producing challenges to the existing Socialist government. In using the term civil society, I refer to social interaction on all levels: institutional, private, public, etc., which involve aspects of self-involvement and social relations more regulated by laws and institutions. By subject I refer to the subject of psychoanalysis who is always split from his/her object of desire and whose actions represent this eternal longing for wholeness which can never be fulfilled.

In 1984 Laibach merged with similar artistic groups working in the Slovene capital city of Ljubljana to form the art collective Neue Slowenische Kunst, NSK, (New Slovene Art). The art collective NSK comprises the groups Laibach (music and ideology), Irwin (fine arts), Noordung (theater), and New Collectivism (graphic arts). The art collective shifted its strategy in 1992 by becoming a "state", the "virtual state" of NSK. Laibach are the founding fathers of the NSK art collective and virtual state, having created the aesthetic strategies and materials characteristic of all NSK work. The members of the collective of NSK function on the level of voluntary rejection of personal tastes and individuality, opting to work as cogs in the machinery of a larger, anonymous, collective body.

I want to discuss the post-punk, industrial music band Laibach in terms of their aesthetic use of the symbols and rhetoric of totalitarianism and nationalism. By exploring this aesthetic in terms of the social situation in which Laibach developed (1980s Yugoslavia), I want to map the overarching elements of Laibach's critiques of the interrelatedness of art and politics which are of continued importance for the situation today in the wars that followed the disintegration of Yugoslavia. While I view Laibach to be an important artistic movement in relation to the overall social structures of Europe, regardless of East-West divisions, for the purpose of this essay, I focus most specifically on the Balkan context and issues relating to war, politics, violence and art.

Laibach, 'During Session', 1987.Laibach's aesthetic strategy of staging "constructions" of violence and state power involves the manipulation of reactions of fascination and fear, seduction and repulsion and the subject's desire to remain a passive receptor, the role most commonly adopted by the the audience of entertainment. Laibach use well-known, recognizable symbols and rhetoric to lure the spectator into a preconceived assumption relating to the symbols and rhetoric found within Laibach's work. The German Fascist, Nazi element of Laibach's symbols are often the first to be recognized, to the extent that they are arguably some of the most easily identifiable components of Laibach's style. Within their earlier work especially, Laibach frequently incorporated images such as swastikas, the fascist leader berating or addressing the crowd, staging concerts resembling mass nationalistic rallies. LaibachKunst often appeared as thinly disguised reproductions of Nazi-Kunst. In the collective's biography, NSK, Laibach declare that their manipulations rely on the signs and techniques associated with "Taylorism, bruitism, Nazi Kunst and disco," (NSK, 18).

Taylorism reflects the industrial mode of production based on notions of mass production and efficiency. Bruitism is a reference to the artistic and philosophic movement which represents the exploitative relations within society in its most basic and brutal form. Nazi-Kunst exemplifies perfectly the interrelatedness of art and politics. Disco and "disco rhythm as a regular repetition [are] the purest, the most radical form of the militantly organized rhythmicity of technicist production, and as such, the most appropriate means of media manipulation," as explained on a spoken address from the album Rekapitulacija, 1980-1984.

Laibach use ideologically charged symbols which effectively function to address the subject's desire to belong to a community, most notably the nation. This desire, (often unconscious,) seeks symbols that represent points of identification within ideological systems. These symbols can often refer to problematic, totalitarian state systems, such as Nazism, Stalinism. The use of the German language and the choice of the German name "Laibach" further encourage an association with German fascism and Nazism. "Laibach" has taken on the German name of the Slovene capital city, Ljubljana, to recall specific historical periods and the traumas associated with these periods; the reign of the Austro-Hungarian empire, fascist occupation during the Second World War, essentially periods of occupation, resistance and/or collaboration. The members of the group chose the name "Laibach" for a youth movement aiming to manipulate art and ideology by means of industrial music with a single purpose in mind: to provoke the audience by inciting associations with past traumas.

Laibach, 'We are Clean', 1987.Laibach, 'Death for Death', 1982.In early 1983, as Laibach gained recognition and became much more visible within the former Yugoslavia, the use of the name "Laibach" was outlawed. Laibach were not allowed to appear in concert under the name "Laibach," but the band continued to perform concerts announced through posters invoking Kassimir Malevich's Suprematist image, the Black Cross. Radio announcers would discuss a concert to be given at a certain place and time, never announcing the band by name, but playing the music in the background during the announcement. By forbidding the use of the name, the state effectively recognized the communicative nature of the name and the presumed danger in its connotations. Laibach responded with the statement "our name might be dirty, but we are clean."

Although Laibach use rhetoric and symbols of Nazism, there is an inconsistency within their use that reflects a subtle play involved with an image or statement. Laibach play on the Third Reich's propaganda statement "one transmitter and a multitude of receivers," a reference to the manipulative potential of the mass media. Early on, Laibach declared themselves to be members of the first television generation, denouncing rock music as totalitarian in nature. They rejected the conventional belief in the revolutionary potential and freedom of rock music and the subcultures associated with it as a misrecognition of the continued dominance of the market economy and sanctioned outlets for the expression of energy and rage. Rather than changing much within the social structure, they hold that rock music invariably serves as a safety valve of acceptable rebellion which actually helps to preserve the dominant social structure.

In Laibach's view, rather than representing an arena of freedom and escape from ideology, pop music and rock and roll mirror the relations of domination and power within society. Laibach's references to totalitarian state power may refer to a different symbolic system, but rock and roll is the same phenomenon in terms of libidinal economy. In performance and rhetoric, Laibach celebrate the hero, the warrior, the male body, politics as spectacle, control and submission. The song "Ti, Ki Izzivas" ("You Who are Challenging") evokes the war hero, ready to die for the cause. In the background music, the music from the shower scene in Hitchcock's Psycho hints at the implications of psychotic fascination, the eroticization and libidinal investment in death and military heroism.


Ti, ki izzivas
vsaj ne sili v kritje;
to ni velikega poguma znak
Srcno stopi sam
v drvoprelitjein padi,

You, who are challenging
at least do not look for cover
It is no sign of great courage
Go out yourself, in manly fashion
to the slaughter - and die

Laibach adopted the military clothing and bombastic music in recognition of its power to hold sway over an audience. The expression of power and force at the concerts, symptomatic in the outer military appearance of the group, antlers and banners placed on stage, reflect the overarching theme of Laibach's work: the nature of power and the interconnectedness of politics, ideology and art.

Laibach, 'Decree', 1984.The swastikas found in much of Laibach's visual imagery are actually derived from a John Heartfield montage of four blades bound together to form a swastika with blood dripping from the blades. These images are direct references to John Heartfield's anti-fascist photomontages of the 1930s. Other uses are more difficult to decipher. In 1933, Josef Goebbels stated that politics is "the highest and most comprehensive art there is and we who shape modern German policy feel ourselves to be artists." This statement is juxtaposed with the Laibach statement, "[p]olitics is the highest and all embracing art, and we who create contemporary Slovene art consider ourselves politicians," (NSK, 48).

The mythical narratives created by nations to make sense of and revise their perceived relation to the past, present, and future constitute another element that is re-articulated in Laibach's work. One of the most developed national myths of post World War II Slovenia has been the myth of Slovenia as an inherently anti-fascist, anti-Germanic nation, having been the first region to successfully turn back fascist invaders in World War II. The elements of truth within this historical narrative are overshadowed by nationalistic fervor, which itself is very similar in structure to fascism. In the film on Laibach and NSK entitled Predictions of Fire (1995), the philosopher Rostko Mocnik explained that fascism persisted during Real Existing Socialism within Yugoslavia and continues to flourish because, "the confrontation with fascism was never really made on the symbolic level. It was clear for the rest of the Eastern Bloc that it couldn't happen, it was too close to the ways totalitarianism functioned there. While in Yugoslavia, I guess it happened for a perverted reason, namely, the real victory over fascism, the military victory blocked the symbolic continuation. People thought it was OK. 'We defeated the Nazis. We defeated the Quesnicks. We don't have to worry about them anymore.' And of course, the everyday fascism is always there without the Quesnicks and the Nazis."

Laibach's symbolic manipulation of particularly fascistic symbols and rhetoric challenged the notion that these ideas were not possible within, or a threat to, Yugoslavia. They exposed them in the everyday social sphere and brought back traumatic memories and associations. In their concerts, Laibach stage an assault on the audience and a frustration of its expectations, offering a Brechtian challenge to the desire for catharsis and entertainment. The audience is often forced to wait a lengthy time before the show begins. The lights are then turned on, often directly pointed at the audience, as though the audience were the true spectacle and subjecting its members to a sense of interrogation and expectation. After a long wait, there then begins a (usually taped) drum introduction or pounding instrumental techno rhythm. The result is increased expectation, agitation, growing crowd hysteria and anger. The continued loud rhythm produced by drums or synthesizers creates an effect similar to shell shock within the audience, preparing the audience for the "psycho-physical" assault of terror that is the Laibach "sound creation:" "Laibach practices a sound force in a form of systematic psycho-physical terror as socio-orgaizational principle in order to effectively discipline and raise a feeling of total adherence bond of a certain revolted and alienated audience which results in a state of collective aphasia, which is the principle of social organization." (Rekapitulacija, 1980-1984)

While the spectator can feel drawn to the performance as a whole as it is staged before him or her, he or she may also feel an uneasy sense of guilt in observing what Laibach puts forth as performance or entertainment. While s/he is caught up in the music, the experience is exhilirating. After the music stops, a sense of awkwardness spreads over the crowd. The awkwardness results from the spectator's realization that s/he has been deceived through a manipulation of his or her desire. This deception has resulted in an identification with an "undesirable" form of nationalism to which s/he had previously considered him/herself immune.

This deception reveals more about the audience's hidden desires than about the band's own intentions or personal beliefs. For people to be deceived, they must want to be deceived. Often the uneasy feeling is associated with pure anger, violently directed towards Laibach. To properly address the issue of desire, that is, the desire for a sense of belonging and community and within collective, national, ideological structures, desire has to be read not so much as a desire for pleasure or pleasurable experiences, but rather as a desire for fantasy. It is fantasy which structures our desires, providing meaning to our lives within the social body.

Laibach, 'Buy Victory', 1987.Within fantasy there is an object of fantasy, providing meaning through the subject's relation to the object of fantasy. The subject knows his or her role through processes of identification, whereby the subject is fortified through an identification with someone or some group other than him/herself. Similar relations of desire reflected through social relations provide a positive identification. Interpellation of the subject is the process by which an individual recognizes him or herself as a member of a community or group. Belonging to a group or community implies certain identity behavior and attitudes. In his essay "Ideology and the State," Louis Althusser explains that the nature of identity formation has a mirror - like structure. The specular quality of the subject's identity formation is double, itself reflecting the manner in which ideology functions and can be assured to function. Through the unconscious mechanism of an individual conforming him- or herself to belong, mirroring the attitudes and behaviors of the social body, the continuation of the system is ensured.

By making the means by which this function operates become obvious, the continuous repetition of identification and further fortification of the structure can be weakened or destabilized. Althusser concedes that for ideology to function properly, reality is necessarily misrecognized (méconnue) within the various forms in which the subject recognizes him or herself. Therefore, ideology has an inherent aspect of misrecognition and ignorance on the part of the subject. Laibach make the repetitive character of socially dominant power structures apparent and show the rituals of social identification and the desires associated with them to be senseless rituals followed in a necessarily non-reflective manner.

Longing to belong to the mass implies a desire for belonging within the ideological structure of a ruling system. Within the mass of the community, the individual can lose him or herself and feel euphoria through collective power. The song "Sila" ("The Force") addresses these feelings of collective euphoria oriented towards state power, unity and force.


Tempests are roaring over us.
Cities and bodies are burning!

We are shaken by delight.

The sounds of our speech are spreading
Wide over the fields,
A speech that is our prayer and our cry.

No, never again, you universal God,
Will you let our force be submerged,
For it is so infinitely sweet and profound...

We are shaken by delight!

Laibach, 'Free Yugoslavia', 1984.Laibach combines familiar negative symbols and rhetoric (swastikas, extreme violence, glorification of death) with equally familair, more neutral symbols and rhetoric (antlers, the command to love your fellow man) in what Slavoj Žižek terms an "inconsistent mixture, inconsistent bric-a-brac". In this manner, Laibach manipulate the sensation of both repulsion and fascination. In the early 1980s, Laibach assumed the outer appearance of state authority (quasi-military uniforms, discipline, perfection and order) to which most Yugoslavians were conscious of the appropriate level of patriotism and responsibility they were to feel as citizens.

Rather than assuming an apparently critical distance to thematize actual state corruption in comparison to its idealistic nationalistic rhetoric, Laibach represent the state where "[t]he state behaves as we do. This is a dialectic dialogue, traumatic for the people," (NSK, 60). Laibach reiterated the party line and followed all the ideological imperatives to their necessary conclusion. Rather than embodying an approriate level of patriotrism and loyalty, Laibach took it all too seriously, thereby overidentifying with the state. In so doing, they exposed the dangerous of what total devotion to state and nation imply far more effectively than parody or humor might appear to be able to effect. As with the prohibition of the name "Laibach," the state continually engaged Laibach, taking them seriously, in effect giving them the power they had to affect the structure of the state.

Laibach incorporated taped political speeches into their performances and recordings. Early on, in particular, the speeches of Marshall Josip Broz Tito were incorporated to thematize the Yugoslav natonalistic rhetoric of unity and brotherhood and the defense of the nation from external or internal threats. The song "Drzava" ("The State"), incorporates a quote spoken by Tito which proclaims: "We have shed a sea of blood for the fraternity and unity of our nations. We shall allow noone to inerfere or plot from within to destroy this fraternity and unity." The rhetoric of unity at any cost mixed with the lyrics "all freedom is allowed, authority here belongs to the people" results in a contradictory message:


The state is responsible for
The protection
And exploitation of the forests

The state is responsible for
The physical education of the people
Particularly of the youth
In order to raise the standard of national health,
And defense potentials

It is becoming more and more lenient
All freedom is allowed

Here belongs to
The People!

In The Spoils of Freedom (Routledge, 1994), Renata Salecl addresses just such a contradiction within the structure of self-management in the former Yugoslavia. The collision of the rhetoric of unity with ideas of plurality in self-managment as developed in the 1970s resulted in "[s]omething which, at first glance, seemed to be just another empty phrase from the self-management vocabulary, ...[which] suddenly turned out to generate a multitude of interpretations and thus to mark a site of radical contingency....So an apparently surplus syntagm became the point at which the system began to fracture. This is the point where elements, which had until then formed the ideological structure, now achieved independence and began to function as 'floating signifiers' awaiting new articulation, (61, 62)." Laibach were actively involved in the manipulation and rearticulation of these 'floating signifiers.'

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Laibach incorporated speeches in their concert performances which had been written and performed by the representative of NSK's Department of Pure and Applied Philosophy . These discourses reworked speeches by Slobodan Milosevic performed in a mixture of the Serbian and German languages. Neville Chamberlain's words of appeasement to Adolf Hitler on the issue of his annexation of lands to the east of Germany were used to conclude the speech given in Belgrade, 1989. Images of war and destruction were projected onto screens with the symbol of NATO superimposed over most of the images.

These speeches, given in 1989 in both Belgrade and Zagreb, served to succinctly predict and warn of the coming wars in the Balkans and the rhetoric which would later accompany the concentration camps and ethnic cleansing. Nationalistic fervor within Serbia was provoked and controlled by Serbian television broadcasting of war time footage from the Second World War which portrayed Slovenia and Croatia as Nazi sympathizers and collaborators. The war footage was musically accompanied by the Serbian military march from World War I about military advances along the river Drina .

During the NATO tour, Laibach performed in Sarajevo, a city destroyed by the war in the Balkans, and performed its version of the war march, "Mars on River Drina," at the National Theater in November, 1995. Laibach performed this song, which thematizes the horror of war ("Mars" denoting both the god of war and "march") and the manipulation of national memory and trauma to garner the support of the military, while the heads of the various splinter states of the former Yugoslavia signed the Dayton Peace Accord which would allow NATO troups into Bosnia.

In the early performances, Laibach incorporated an overidentification with the totalitarian state structure of the former Yugoslavia. Current Laibach manifestations and cultural productions continue to combine a strict adherence to discipline and state authority, but now also engage the fundamentalist religious ritual which has increasingly become a primary cause of violence within the Balkans. During the Jesus Christ Superstars tour, the lead singer dressed more like Jesus with long hair and a beard, with a large cross necklace. This Christ-like appearance is, on the outside, much different from the shaved head and military uniform of previous tours. The other band members dressed in black with priests' collars during the Jesus Christ Superstars tour, in contrast to their usual bare chests or brown shirts and black ties. Either "uniform," representing religious or political devotion, serves to ground the critique, providing a cultural referent.

Laibach have always embodied elements which manifest the inconsistent mixture which is their aesthetic. The fanaticism that Laibach has presented in performance has always been regarded as suspect by whichever group was represented or connoted through the cultural referent. In the early manifestations of Laibach as a supreme totalitarian organism, the entire organization of Laibach and NSK was regarded suspiciously, especially by the state, which incriminated itself in its criticism of Laibach. By categorizing Laibach's behavior and rhetoric as dangerous and a threat, the state was defining its own behavior and rhetoric as dangerous and a threat. More recently, the shift towards religious themes has met with disapproval from the church and its representatives in Slovenia.

In staging acts of violence and in constructing a new state, (the virtual state of NSK), Laibach draw attention to these contradictions. The performances of Laibach and overall existence of the state of NSK can be seen as a complete rejection of the artistic strategies of irony, cynical distance and disengagement from actual political circumstances, in favor of an overidentification with the trappings of power and force. Laibach's attitude is to take ideology more seriously than it is prepared to be taken by its subjects. In so doing, Laibach draw attention to the negative implications of any ideology when pushed to its logical conclusions. The songs confront the listener with the ugly underbelly of state force such as in "Smrt za Smrt," ("Death for Death").

nailing criminals
alive to trees
cruelly torturing
gouging out eyes
cutting off ears and tongues
crushing their limbs
piercing biceps
their bound hands
thread through their open wounds

all criminal families killed

some specialists
for executing quilty women
and children
with pocket knives

death for death
death for death
death for death


The political arena of the Balkans has changed since this song was written in the early 1980s, but the primary issues regarding the nature of power remain the same. The images of "Death for Death" have a disturbing similarity to reports coming out of Kosovo, although they speak to an earlier period of war and death.

Laibach critique the method through which national symbols and rhetoric are used to demonize an "Other" and legitimize violence in the name of honor, unity and brotherly love. The similarities of Slobodan Milosovich's tactics to Laibach's aesthetic are unsettling. Rather than serving as an indictment of the danger in Laibach's imagery and messages, it should be a wake up call and confirmation of the important message still contained with Laibach's work. As they have explained before, "LAIBACH in itself is not a danger; the true danger resides in people, it is implanted in human beings like the age-old fear of punishment, and from it the earthly seed of evil stems. Our evil is its projection, so we are a danger to those who in themselves are dangerous," (from online interviews).

The distinction to be made is that Laibach manipulate symbols and rhetoric to destabilize rather than fortify subject positions and the power of ruling apparatuses through the exposure of their inconsistencies and pluralities. Laibach's invocation of force, violence and the aestheticization of power can be read in terms of encouraging reflection by inciting feeling of fear and aggression that lack an enemy against which to vent those feelings. This is quite distinct from the nationalist rhetoric which blatantly portrays a scapegoat and enemy as the hindering factor to a nation's success, wholeness and unity.

In the film Predictions of Fire, (1995), Slavoj Žižek explains the more effective potential of Laibach's performance. Rather than providing any answer as to where they stand, Laibach function as a question mark, forcing the individual concerned about Laibach's messages or the potential danger of misunderstanding or misinterpreting them to answer his or her own question: "What is at stake in their act is precisely to return this question back to ourselves, to ask ourselves. We have there a certain performance. How do we stand towards them? They are not the answer, they are the question. They are a big question mark on stage. We must answer it."

Laibach has stated that "[o]ur mission at this moment is to make your Evil lose its nerves," (NSK, 54). It is through the radical exposure of the inconsistencies of ideologies and nationalism that Laibach encourage a reworking of the "floating signifiers" that circulate within both the political and aesthetic arenas. Rather than representing a tragic, static social condition that has outlived itself, Laibach provide a glimpse at a means to effect change. It is this contingency that suggests potential social change. By functioning as a question to the audience, Laibach are challenging us to recognize the opportunities, reject cynicism and engage with what is out there.

António Damásio

terça-feira, 26 de janeiro de 2010

José Miguel Silva


My rock & roll friend
The Go-Betweens

Eu estava na Lavandeira a espera do César
que me prometera 10 gramas para as 6,30
quando um desgraçado me trouxe a notícia
de que o Artur fora encontrado em casa
com a morte a correr-lhe nas veias.
Oh terríveis 6 horas da tarde, eu tinha
na manhã seguinte um exame de Estética
e a questão era responder para que serve
a arte, se não impede a mudança,
se não faz que estejas aqui ao pé de nós
a ouvir o último dos Go-Betweens.
Não serve para muito, serve apenas
para escudar uma sombra, para escorar
as lágrimas, para que a morte não seja
a penúltima a rir.

Vista para um pátio
Seguido de
José Miguel Silva
Relógio d´Água


domingo, 17 de janeiro de 2010

António Ramos Rosa

Casa de sol onde os animais pensam

erguida nos ares com raízes na terra
ampla e pequena como um pagode
com salas nuas e baixas camas
casa de andorinhas e gatos nos sótãos
grande nau navegando imóvel
num mar de ócio e de nuvens brancas
com antigos ditados e flores picantes
com frescura de passado e pó de rebanhos
ó casa de sonos e silêncios tão longos
e de alegrias ruidosas e pães cheirosos
ó casa onde se dorme para se renascer
ó casa onde a pobreza resplende de fartura
onde a liberdade ri segura

António Ramos Rosa
de Voz Inicial(1960)


José Gomes Ferreira

Entrei no café com um rio na algibeira

Entrei no café com um rio na algibeira
e pu-lo no chão,
a vê-lo correr
da imaginação...

A seguir, tirei do bolso do colete
nuvens e estrelas
e estendi um tapete
de flores
a concebê-las.

Depois, encostado à mesa,
tirei da boca um pássaro a cantar
e enfeitei com ele a Natureza
das árvores em torno
a cheirarem ao luar
que eu imagino.

E agora aqui estou a ouvir
A melodia sem contorno
Deste acaso de existir
-onde só procuro a Beleza
para me iludir
dum destino.

José Gomes Ferreira


Robert Frost

Fire And Ice

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.

Robert Frost


W. H. Auden

As I Walked Out One Evening

As I walked out one evening,
Walking down Bristol Street,
The crowds upon the pavement
Were fields of harvest wheat.

And down by the brimming river
I heard a lover sing
Under an arch of the railway:
"Love has no ending.

"I'll love you, dear, I'll love you
Till China and Africa meet,
And the river jumps over the mountain
And the salmon sing in the street,

"I'll love you till the ocean
Is folded and hung up to dry
And the seven stars go squawking
Like geese about the sky.

"The years shall run like rabbits,
For in my arms I hold
The Flower of the Ages,
And the first love of the world."

But all the clocks in the city
Began to whirr and chime:
"O let not Time deceive you,
You cannot conquer Time.

"In the burrows of the Nightmare
Where Justice naked is,
Time watches from the shadow
And coughs when you would kiss.

"In headaches and in worry
Vaguely life leaks away,
And Time will have his fancy
To-morrow or to-day.

"Into many a green valley
Drifts the appalling snow;
Time breaks the threaded dances
And the diver's brilliant bow.

"O plunge your hands in water,
Plunge them in up to the wrist;
Stare, stare in the basin
And wonder what you've missed.

"The glacier knocks in the cupboard,
The desert sighs in the bed,
And the crack in the tea-cup opens
A lane to the land of the dead.

"Where the beggars raffle the banknotes
And the Giant is enchanting to Jack,
And the Lily-white Boy is a Roarer,
And Jill goes down on her back.

"O look, look in the mirror?
O look in your distress:
Life remains a blessing
Although you cannot bless.

"O stand, stand at the window
As the tears scald and start;
You shall love your crooked neighbour
With your crooked heart."

It was late, late in the evening,
The lovers they were gone;
The clocks had ceased their chiming,
And the deep river ran on.

W. H. Auden





Alex Cherry

Etiquetas: ,

sexta-feira, 15 de janeiro de 2010

António Osório


E o defunto poderá, como se fosse um
deus, fazer tudo quanto o seu coração

Livro dos Mortos, cap. CI (1480 a. C.)

Sede da segunda vida. Oxalá encontre,
oculto, um caminho de saída.
Alguém restitua o coração
e em paz permaneça, real, incessante.
Possa um deus antigo, não destruído pelo fogo,
conferir a forma de um lótus
plenamente aberto e ver-me,
sob chuva impiedosa, em esplendor de pureza.
Não, nunca confundir-se com os deuses,
combatem entre si e perecem
como ninhos serpeantes de vespas.
Nem com o falcão, que nasce
e se oculta por cima das montanhas.
Oxalá no ciclo das metamorfoses
seja, depois de lótus, uma andorinha
que leve a treva cativa nas suas asas
e entre em minha casa, na estrebaria
de Cristo e busque o alimento
entre a floresta, o céu e as searas dos pósteros.
Que não tenha eu nome, próximo mistério.
Sede de outra vida. Oxalá a morte
me sepulte no voo interminável da infância,
seja eu filho de mim mesmo,
um recém-nascido órfão e ressuscite meus Pais
E cessem de dirigir-me súplicas,
lavem neste manancial de lágrimas
o ombro e se ajustem à fúria cortante dos ventos
Possa a memória não perder
a sua purificante laringe, volte, sílaba
a sílaba, aos primeiros instantes,
eu imobilize os seus precipícios,
reviva, ouça, me olhe sem espanto,
sem procurar alguém que deva ou não absolver
a juventude seja o único amuleto
e todo o mal saia, pela raiz,
do sarcófago celeste.
Que não seja um ser rodeado de muralhas
um solitário destruído na sua solidão,
o meu túmulo floresça
e jamais emane iracundo odor.
Oxalá eu possa tranquilizar os meus vermes

António Osório
O Lugar do Amor
Círculo de Poesia
Nova Série
Moraes Editores


quarta-feira, 13 de janeiro de 2010

Worst Music Video EVER

terça-feira, 12 de janeiro de 2010

Le rayon vert

ÉRIC ROHMER est parti.

domingo, 10 de janeiro de 2010

Jaime Rocha


A seda e os seus barcos
o vestido que cobre as arestas da cidade
e esconde o mais belo solstício do corpo.

Esse silêncio
os últimos espelhos de um museu
uma arte devoradora de palavras.

Quando vejo esses tecidos
a pele cai-me
as colinas abrem-se
como carne dentro do fogo.

As máscaras deslizam
pelo chão de terra.

Jaime Rocha
A Perfeição das Coisas


Giuseppe Ungaretti

Versa, 21 de Maio de 1916

Pródigo em vagalumes foi o coração
acendeu-se e apagou-se
de verde em verde
o soletrei
Com as minhas mãos plasmo o solo
inundado de grilos
submisso idêntico
Bem-me-quer mal-me-quer
de margaridas
liguei-me à terra ressequida
como um crespão
na haste retorcida do espinheiro alvar
me prendi
feito um espinho
como o Isonzo
esfaltado de azul
na cinza do saibro
descoberto pelo sol
e me transformo
num voo de nuvens
Por fim à rédea solta
o solitário ser angustiado
não mede mais o tempo com o coração
não tem tempo nem lugar
é feliz
Tenho em meus lábios
o beijo de mármore

Giuseppe Ungaretti
Vida de um Homem
Texto bilingue
Tradução do italiano por
Luís Pignatelli.
Hiena Editora


Gabriela Mistral


Canto o que tu amavas, minha vida,
porque vens e me escutas, minha vida,
porque lembras o mundo em que viveste,
canto ao cair da tarde, minha sombra.

Não quero emudecer, ó minha vida.
Como sem este grito me acharias ?
Que sinal me declara, minha vida?

Eu sou a que foi tua, minha vida.
Nem esquecida, nem lenta, nem perdida.
Vem ao cair da noite, minha vida,
vem e recorda o canto, minha vida,
se lembras a canção já aprendida
e o meu nome recordas neste dia.

Espero por ti sem prazo e já sem tempo.
Não temas a neblina, a noite, o aguaceiro.
Vem sempre, com carreiro ,ou sem carreiro.
Chama-me onde estiveres, ó minha alma,
e anda ter comigo, companheiro.

Gabriela Mistral
(Santiago do Chile, 1954)
Antologia Poética
Selecção, tradução e apresentação de
Fernando Pinto do Amaral


John Squire On The Culture Show

sábado, 9 de janeiro de 2010

John Harris - It's an illusion Part 1/5

The french roast


domingo, 3 de janeiro de 2010


Tibet, um dos últimos representantes da "idade de ouro" da banda desenhada belga, morreu durante a noite na sequência de uma embolia pulmonar, segundo informou a televisão belga RTBF.

Nascido em 1931 em Marselha, França, Gilbert Gascard foi viver para a Bélgica com a família quando tinha cinco anos. Aos 16, começou a trabalhar nos estúdios da Disney em Bruxelas, para o "Mickey Magazine", e aí conheceu André-Paul Duchâteau, futuro director da revista "Tintin".

Entrou para equipa desta revista em 1950, onde criou Chick Bill, uma fábula com animais que tinha por cenário o faroeste norte-americano. O cowboy - que ganhou forma humana a partir da terceira aventura - protagonizou 69 álbuns publicados a partir de 1954.

Em 1958, Tibet criou, com argumento de Duchâteau, o jornalista Ric Hochet, a personagem mais conhecida da dupla. Publicaram cerca de 70 álbuns desta série.

O nome artístico de Gilbert Gascard foi criado pelo irmão mais velho que, com um ano e meio de idade, não conseguia pronunciar Gilbert.



fernanda garrido

sábado, 2 de janeiro de 2010

Nancy Sinatra Bang Bang