Feline Friday


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The Epistemology of Loss

“The Ball Poem”


John Berryman

What is the boy now, who has lost his ball.
What, what is he to do? I saw it go
Merrily bouncing, down the street, and then
Merrily over—there it is in the water!
No use to say ‘O there are other balls’:
An ultimate shaking grief fixes the boy
As he stands rigid, trembling, staring down
All his young days into the harbour where
His ball went. I would not intrude on him,
A dime, another ball, is worthless. Now
He senses first responsibility
In a world of possessions. People will take balls,
Balls will be lost always, little boy,
And no one buys a ball back. Money is external.
He is learning, well behind his desperate eyes,
The epistemology of loss, how to stand up
Knowing what every man must one day know
And most know many days, how to stand up
And gradually light returns to the street,
A whistle blows, the ball is out of sight.
Soon part of me will explore the deep and dark
Floor of the harbour . . I am everywhere,
I suffer and move, my mind and my heart move
With all that move me, under the water
Or whistling, I am not a little boy.
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not all those who wander etc. etc.

If you visit TBTP on a regular basis, you are likely aware that I am a big J.R.R. Tolkien fan. I really like the style of these reissues of The Lord of the Rings trilogy published in the US by HMH last month. The covers were designed by Christopher Moisan with illustrations by Swedish illustrator Johan Egerkrans. The cover of The Return of the King  in particular is reminiscent of classic pen and ink fairy tale illustrations of the early 20th century.




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Another Reason To Envy Norwegians

Norway has some of the globe’s most scenic geography, one of the world’s highest standards of living, and a genuinely happy populace, and now they also have these amazing passport’s too. Norway’s new passports were developed by creative agency Neue and recently released. You can check-out the new documents using the new documents here.

Aside from a design that makes the passport safer, the passport also has details from Norwegian nature used both as a background illustration and a security element.

When the pages of the passports are placed under UV light, the reproduction of the Norwegian landscape will change from day to night, with, among other things, beautiful northern lights and clouds.


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The Five-Minute Museum

British filmmaker and animator Paul Bush‘s  short film The Five-Minute Museum is a mindboggling tour through the history of Western Civilization at breakneck speed. The stop motion trip carries the viewer through the cultural history of civilization by way of six European museum collections. Filmed mainly with stills that flash by at a rate of 24 per second, Bush groups objects similar together. You don’t have to be a museum or history geek to enjoy this crazy, and sometimes humorous, journey. In the first short film clip below, Bush explains his process as introduction to The Five-Minute Museum.

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What type of reader are you


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Here Stood Mayakovsky

The Brooklyn Bridge literally loomed large in my Brooklyn family’s history for a century, so I was intrigued when I stumbled upon this impressive limited edition volume. The accordion-fold book Brooklyn Bridge with a poem by the 20th century Russian poet Vladimir Mayakovsky  and original woodcuts by Canadian printer and book designer Glenn Goluska . The award-winning book artist translated, designed, composed, and printed the book in 1985 in Metroblack type on dampened mold-made Rives paper at his imprimerie dromadaire in Toronto in an edition of 75 copies signed by the artist. The poem was composed by Mayakovsky during a three-month visit to the United States in 1925. Goluska produced the edition as a belated celebration of the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge in 1883.




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We’re All Mad Here

I maintain the firm belief that we can never have enough new editions of Alice in Wonderland, especially illustrated versions. So, I was happy to see the Pushkin Press has issued a very special Alice that features the marvelous artwork of the brilliant Dutch illustrator Floor Reider. I haven’t had the opportunity to lay my hands on a copy IRL as of yet, but the photos that I’ve seen convince me that it is a worthy edition. Here’s a sample an a short video for now:

This new edition contains the texts of both Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel Through the Looking Glass in a beautiful, clothbound flipped book – illustrated throughout in glorious color. Floor Rieder’s gorgeous drawings are an original and fresh imagining of Alice’s topsy-turvy world. Out now from Pushkin Children’s, this clothbound edition is a must for any Alice fans, and the perfect Christmas gift for all. https://pushkinpress.com/books/alices…

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Bookstores make you feel


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Take a (long) hike

Many years ago, I hiked the fabled Appalachian Train. Well, actually I only day hiked on a few sections of the 2190 mile (3500 kilometer) mountainous trail, but technically one could argue that I did in fact hike the Trail. Even though I have never been an intrepid thru- hiker, I do try and do day hikes whenever I travel in wilderness places such as Alaska, Iceland, Canada, and New Zealand. A few years ago, I even did some hiking in Colorado.

The beautiful film below by Croatian filmmaker and thru-hiker Nikola Horvat is a stunning documentary about hiking the Colorado Trail entitled “Why (Do I Hike).” The award-winning 23-minute film incorporates gorgeous footage of the Colorado Rockies and a narrative about the thru-hiking experience.

Horvat shot the film during a 2019 Colorado Trail thru-hike. It features interviews with people he met along the way. “Why (Do I Hike) “is divided into five segments: The first four deal with the key factors that motivate long-distance backpackers (Nature, Time, Community, and Mental Health, respectively), while the Final Chapter synthesizes Horvat’s conclusions.

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