Jean Metzinger: Soldier at a Game of Chess

jean metzinger 1915

(Soldat jouant aux échecs, or Le Soldat à la partie d’échecs)
An infantryman at a game of chess. Said to be a self-portrait because he’s smoking a cigarette…


Pre-Raphaelite Gone Wrong

The Death of the Grave-Digger, Carlos Schwabe (1895)

Angel as Shadow,
Angel Wings as Scythes


Giacomo Balla – The Spell is Broken



(The other Futurists…) Giacomo Balla, 1920 – The Spell is Broken

Ed Burra: The Tea Shop, 1929

The Tea Shop 1929

Strange goings-on in a Rye teashop – they’re not like this nowadays…

Blake – Francesca da Rimini, Canto V


Commedia Canto V – the whirled souls.


bellefleurThis I know, the symbol is the gateway to delusion,
Blurring to deceiving smoke
The border between fact and error.
Making havoc in the brain’s fine algebra,
By symbol, the fantastic structure is made too strong,
Too firm a palace against sad reality.

She has been kidnapped from her usual world of glitter and luxury, and now her narrative strides to one completion that has always been possible. The international star known as Bellefleur is depicted in the course of her murder by a mysterious assailant.
Continue reading “Bellefleur”

Hedy Lamarr’s Tuna Salad Recipe


One evening, Olivia de Havilland prepares — with great concern to adhere to the strict instructions on the tin, even to the extent of using her reading glasses — Hedy Lamarr’s Marine Fresh™ Skipjack Tuna Salad recipe, and finds it not good.

Lettuce, hard-boiled egg, apple, celery.
Cardboard, she reckons, multiply. As tasteless as. Redolent of. A symphony in. Nutritional value: cardboard.

Being unpersuaded by the bright endorsement of her peer.
Obvious, isn’t it — works fine on the great unwashed.

Cyd Charisse speaks out:—
For my part, I too have always found Hedy Lamarr’s Marine Fresh™ Skipjack Tuna Salad rather cold and lacking in any spritz, brio or zing. Nowhere near as good as Gene Tierney’s Royal Albacore Tuna Salad recipe, lovely with tomatoes and olives, and maybe a few string beans. Oh yes, perfection on a plate.
Continue reading “Hedy Lamarr’s Tuna Salad Recipe”

In Parkland (Preview)


The morose poet Mayakovsky sits down next to her,
And, just so that she cannot mistake his intentions, says:
—I do not exist.
Ok, she can cope with that.
—But you’ll have an orange juice… or a coffee, won’t you? You look like you need something.

The magic hour. He watches the bumbling carp in the dark green, ornamental, artificial pond.
The moths hitting the surface tension.
He notices the sun’s oblique ray and shifts himself slightly, such that it now comes in over his left ear — more raffish — although, since he and the woman are on the same bench, identically facing, the effect is rather lost.

After he has watched enough:
—You know what I’m going to bring you, don’t you, says Mayakovsky. What my message is going to be.

—I do, says the woman.
—So should I bring it yet?
—I think you should get something, there’s a cafe, it’s only a kiosk, but I’d be happy to…
It’s a false-start, he knows he must recover the situation quickly or lose the opportunity.
—It’s not really hunger, it’s more melancholy. I have medication for it.
He reaches over with his lips and kisses her.
Continue reading “In Parkland (Preview)”

The 24 Deaths of MH – Part 3

sunsetHe just expired in his sleep.
It’s common knowledge, almost to a truism. His heart gave out, his lifestyle; he had the heart of an eighty-year-old by the end.
Had he survived the first attack, they probably could have fixed him up.
He might have done a few puff pieces about his reformed character, my days of excess are over, et cetera.
Should have looked after myself more, should have looked ahead.
The Journalist spoke to the Pathologist, as they are together, sipping gin slings and watching the sunset.
—I really can’t tell you any more about it than this…
Then, with him slyly winking, which brought them firmly together, metaphorically, which threw out an offer of future conspiracy between them. Feelers, putting out.
—Except that’s the official story.
Continue reading “The 24 Deaths of MH – Part 3”