Some glory in their birth , some in their skill ,

Some in their wealth , some in their body’s force,

Some in their garments, though new-fangled ill,

Some in their hawks and hounds , some in their horse ;

And every humour hath his adjunct pleasure ,

Wherein it finds a joy above the rest .

But these particulars are not my measure ;

All these I better in one general best . = in you (me )

Thy love is better than high birth to me ,

Richer than wealth , prouder than garments ‘ cost,

Of more delight than hawks or horses be;

And, having thee , of all men’s pride I boast-

Wretched in this alone, that thou mayst take

All this awayand me most wretched make.

The 91st sonnet of Shakespeare crowned me Emperor of Ethiopia , the Neguse-Negest of the World. ( The reason why I rejected the title of a Negus as not equivalent to the honour I deserve in being human and appreciating the respect I showed to nature in sacrifycing all my worldly interest in preference to nature’s glorious revelation , God rewarded me with a divine majesty and made me an Emperor ).

To celebrate my coronation Median invited me and 10 memebers of the Imperial Cabinet to Holland . We will be staying in a hotel with a view to the sea and a beach just like the one I had at Cala Ratjada , Spain . My Care-Takers (Betreuerinnen )Frau Klawitter and Frau Schloßarek will be travelling along with us. The journey to the sea will start on 1st.of April 2019 .


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Radio WDR just announced Heinrich Heine’s poem about the star falling from heaven . A Swan’s Lied composed by —based on Heine’s Star: Das Lied des schwarzen Schwanns.

Shall I call myself a black star simply because I was in Düsselldorf where Heine’s living quarters were free for tourists to see ? No doubt I was there . Last month I for strange reasons which are now no more strange, left my bed early in the morning and headed to the main train station. Unusual it was indeed that Düsseldorf should stand as the Final Destination . Düsseldorf and not Jerusalem is the Capital City of the World, I should say from a religious point of view, if this were not blasphemous. To make a long story short, I embarked the train . It was a fine weather , almost summer-like. Once in Düsseldorf I visited the home of Heinrich Heine and then the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein -Westfalen , Düsseldorf. There were postcards on display with no price-tags . I saw my favorite artist Paul Klee was among the chosen. I chose his ‘Garten nach dem Gewitter , 1932’ and two more postcards and regarding them as gifts of the museum I took steps to justify the temptation. I found none, not even ‘ don’t lead us to temptation , save us from evil . ‘ Wodefetenam atagban kekfu adnen inji .

I saw children playing in a sandbox. A moving sight. In German, Sandkasten , is an entire story. Early friendships which began im Sandkasten are infact rare but the romance of it, even to me who knows only street football ,is magical . It happened when I today walked through Westpark in Aachen a living quarter in South Aachen where I had a room of my own 30 years ago. I was a student then doing my Abitur at Aachen’s Kaufmännisches Gymnasium . Before I moved to Cologne I lived for 3 years in Aachen at Südstrasse 70 . Now I am 63 and almost all who drank with me at Be Bop and Dom Keller are dead. It feels strange to walk on streets you knew very well 30 years ago. Noone knows you though you feel you know everybody and everybody knows you. A feeling of nostalgia mixed with eternal youth which helps dilute the nostalgia. But then I cannot say nothing has changed in the last 30 years. While trying to remember what exactly has kept me here when the rest immigrated to America, to England to Paradise or back to Ethiopia ( not counting the dead of whom I don’t know where they went ) , while trying to remember this and the other mystery of life, I saw I have entered Westpark . Something has happened that stopped me from walking further: I saw children in sandkasten (Sandbox ) playing with sand . Life’s poesy. I stood watching them play. A doll , a chilldren’s doll of a shovel and a work of of filling a buckett taken as a doll’s work . Reminds me a theory of fiction which says a fiction is a doll’s world . A marriage between dolls, a work between dolls , the children as dolls like in a fiction which also is not real . I forgot the name of this theorist. Kendall Walton-Mimesis as Make-Believe.

The reference Henry James makes in ‘The Golden Bowl ‘ is, to Edgar Allan Poe’s ‘ The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym ‘, I found out.

” He remembered to have read as a boy a wonderful tale by Allan Poe …which was a thing to show by the way, what imagination Americans could have : the story of the ship-wrecked Gordon Pym …” Henry James The Golden Bowl

More fascinating than the discovery of the reference is the discovery of Henry James’s writing method. To find this out I began reading The Golden Bowl from the beginning. The very first sentence , ” The Prince has always liked his London , when it had come to him ; he was one of the Modern Romans who find by the Thames a more convincing image of the truth of the ancient state than any they have left by the Tiber. ” ibid.

The first sentence of a book tells a lot . Specially in philosophy. In a novel you never know what it is all about until you have read the whole book . But not in a novel of Henry James. Why ? Because his style is modern. What does this mean ? It means his style is not conventional. Let us stop here before my definition becomes circular. And concentrate on an other aspect than mere definition. The aspect of surprize which already began in the first sentence when the prince landed in ancient Rome standing on a bridge in London. The danger in this is that if you keep on surprizing the reader you pay for it in loss of consistency. Exactly this danger Henry James saw and calls it by name, ” The young man’s movements , however, betrayed no consistency of attention …”

At least by now I see Henry James’s motive. Why should he mention a problem of consistency already in the first page of the book ? Unless he found that he can’t go on surprizing us without being inconsistent. His method of writing must therefore find a solution to this problem of surprizing without arousing the suspicion that madness as a sign of degeneration when we believed it was all modern. He succeeded in this as all his numerous novels prove to which Joseph Conrad, Martha C.Nussbaum among others paid tribute.

The introduction to Ulysses notes Joyce’s method is not quite dadaist . Dada, if I remember right , is simillar to surrealism, the movement created by Andre Breton. I will make sure what exactly makes dadaism different from surrealism. In refering to the method of Ulysses as ” not quite dadaist ” is here understood ” that styles , like persons , are interchangeable. ” But what is meant in saying ” Only Joyce could have written Ulysses ;…” ? This is vague. Because any book could only be written by its author. Unless it is meant to say Ulysses is different. In that case what makes Ulysses different ? Take the opposite view, ” …anybody could have written it …” which is also put forward and even prefered. Explainning what is meant by ” …anybody could have written Ulysses, the introduction elaborates, ” If our words are scarcely our own …” How and when are our words not our own ? And what does it mean to say our words are not our own ? The answer is not kept secret. A suggestion Joyce is said to have made illuminates the mystery about writing words which are not our own. It is when the plot is not ours. It is borrowed. Joyce ” claimed to base much of his material on borrowings from the talkers of Dublin ; and took perverse pride in sharing with Shakespeare the boast of never having created a single plot. “

It makes sense now to say anybody could have written it . The method is you simply write anything . You don’t have to create a plot. This indeed is a discovery. And because nobody knows your intentions because you have no intention at all , what you write looks like it is something complicated. So complicated that nobody understands it. No plot implies no content to understand. That is why it is said Ulysses is not a novel. How can it be a novel when it has no single plot ? What is it then ? What else but a form ? Only Form. But form presumes content . Not when you deliberately avoid content. ” Joyce made his parodies the basis of a serious case against literature itself ” But why ?

A talk about Joyce’s being an anti-hero , explains this. If literature is a hero-worship, that is. ” If the structure of Ulysses is borrowed , the very language seems sometimes to develop at its own instigation , moving with a will of its own to which the author surrenders. ” Consistent with a ‘ novel’ without plot and a form without content.

A ‘ borrowed structure ‘ can then be only if language develops at its own instigation, with no intention of creating a plot . In this case I deliberately choose the word I intend to express what is in my mind. And here comes the question of meaning ?

If I said, give me that book and you gave me that book it is because what I uttered has a meaning. Otherwise you won’t understand what I said. But you understood as I see it in your action. And you understood because the words I said mean exactly that what I intended them to mean. I can also utter words without meaning. As Joyce does. You will break your head trying to understand what I said but only I know they have no meaning.

” In this respect , also, Ulysses anticipates the techniques of The Waste Land , whose subject is the inability of the modern world to create itself anew. ” ibid

” …and parody is the act of a trapped mind which , realizing that it cannot create anew takes its revenge by defacing the masterpieces of the past. ” ibid

These are enough hints towards the decoding of the code of silence I prefered to the noise of destruction which can only disturb the sound of silence. My method has a double purpose: It keeps me safe from the noise the world makes by turning it to beauty as ” Things base and vile holding no quantity love can transport to form and dignity” .

‘ The Golden Bowl ‘ the book by Henry James I have been searching in my private library and found today! I knew this book must be somewhere among my 500 books but couldn’t find it. Irritated at my failure I looked again …but this time systematically on all the shelves , I even took a ladder and like that reader in the painting who you see standing on the ladder with the book in hand (I forgot the name of the painter and the title of the painting ) , just like him I stood on the ladder and looked at the book . As it is my habit to write in the cover of a book , anything that struck me , here too I found something about a white curtain , ‘ The Great White Curtain ‘, has caught my attention. I have even noted the page , page 41, And so I lost no time in reading page 41. Not greatly to my surprize, I saw I have underlined the following sentence ” The state of mind of his new friends , including Mrs. Assingham herself , had resemblances to a great white curtain “. I need a context to understand and interpret this sentence. That I bought the book on January 5th., 2013 for 12 Euros at Mayersche Buchhandlung ( as the note on the cover shows ) is no clue and is not a context as such. But this gives a context, ” When they were so disposed as to shelter surprizes…” ibid

” The story of the ship-wrecked Gordon Pym , who, drifting in a small boat further toward the North Pole -or was it the South ? – than any one had ever done , found at a given moment before him a thickness of white air that was like a dazzling curtain of light , concealing as darkness conceals , yet of the colour of milk or snow . There were moments when he felt his own boat move upon some such mystery. …” He had never known curtains but as purple even to blackness -but as producing where they hung a darkness intended and ominous . When they were so disposed as to shelter surprizes the surprizes were apt to be shocks. ”

This is a great help in understanding James’s method of writing. We remember how Martha C. Nussbaum in her Love’s Knowledge searched for the best method of writing citing Henry James as a pioneer of a new method of writing. T.S Eliot claims in his essay on James Joyce’s Ulysses something like a scientific discovery to have been made by Joyce . I will find out what that discovery is, now that I have an access to modern fiction . Using surrealsm as a key. And how close or how far surrealism is to the deconstruction of Derrida’s Grammatologie .

Just to give you a taste of metaphysics as Aristotle practised it, ” On the other hand if there is absolute Unity and Being , their substance must be Unity and Being ; for no other term is predicated universally of Unity and Being , but only these terms themselves. ” Aristotle Metaphysics , III. iv 1001 a -1000 b

Take One as a symbol of Unity. Now analyse One. What else can you say about One other than it is Unity ? One more thing you can say about One, namely that One is. The ‘is ‘ in One is gives you the Being of One. So now you have One Is = Unity and Being.

This is not either-or but both.

Why Aristotle in talking of substance mentions Unity and Being is because as he said it himself these are the only predicates of Substance. “…their substance must be Unity and Being. ” Whose substance ? The substance of Unity and Being ?

Because this discussion stretches to Metaphysics 1000 b , I will take you there .

” But the hardest question of all to investigate , and also the most important with a view to the discovery of the truth , is whether after all Being and Unity are substances of existing things , and each of them is nothing else than Being and Unity respectively , or whether we should inquire what exactly Being and Unity are , there being some other nature underlyingthem. Some take the former , others the latter view of the nature of Being and Unity . Plato and the Pythagoreans hold that neither Being nor Unity is anything else than itself , and that this is their nature , their essence being simply Being and Unity. ” ibid