Sunday, February 27, 2005

Only Connect

So, lately I've been checking israel news daily. This is fairly unusual for me, but for a while there, it looked liked big things were about to happen. Shame about the terrorism. Today, I read this on haaretz:

The cabinet on Sunday approved Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's proposal to increase by 40 percent stipends allotted by the government to yeshiva students aged 23 and up. The move will not affect the state budget, as at the same time, the government will decrease stipends allotted to yeshiva students under the age of 23.


In other news, I went to a hooka bar last night, and smoked some tabacco. That's about as exciting as it sounds. I also finally saw "Sideways", which was quite good, but not astoundingly amazing (Giamatti is better in American Splendor, which you might want to see if you like that sort of thing.) Had a pretty dreadful shabbos (nothing dramatic, just nothing went well) after a pretty dreadfull erev shabbos (work stuff, ask me if you care.)

I haven't posted poetry in a while, so here's Coleridge's "Kubla Khan." This poem is way, way, way too much.

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.

So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round:
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.

But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted
Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!
A savage place! as holy and enchanted
As e'er beneath a waning moon was haunted
By woman wailing for her demon-lover!
And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,
A mighty fountain momently was forced:
Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst
Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,
Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher's flail:
And 'mid these dancing rocks at once and ever
It flung up momently the sacred river.
Five miles meandering with a mazy motion
Through wood and dale the sacred river ran,
Then reached the caverns measureless to man,
And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean:
And 'mid this tumult Kubla heard from far
Ancestral voices prophesying war!

The shadow of the dome of pleasure
Floated midway on the waves;
Where was heard the mingled measure
From the fountain and the caves.
It was a miracle of rare device,
A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice!

A damsel with a dulcimer
In a vision once I saw:
It was an Abyssinian maid,
And on her dulcimer she played,
Singing of Mount Abora.
Could I revive within me
Her symphony and song,
To such a deep delight 'twould win me
That with music loud and long
I would build that dome in air,
That sunny dome! those caves of ice!
And all who heard should see them there,
And all should cry, Beware! Beware!
His flashing eyes, his floating hair!
Weave a circle round him thrice,
And close your eyes with holy dread,
For he on honey-dew hath fed
And drunk the milk of Paradise.

Have a good week everybody.

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