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April 15, 2005

Ah, the Simurgh! who is this wondrous being?

Who, one fated night, when time stood still,
Flew over China, not a single soul seeing?

The Pointy birds go pointy, pointy,
Annoint my head, annointy nointy

Cor, you don't do things by halves, do you, quid?

I ♠* quidnunc.


O marvelous, delectable links! O clever and mighty Q-kid!

By mystery wrapped in feathers
my heart is stirred!

To confess my ignorance, I had formerly assumed the simurgh was the same as the roc, but I gather from these links the two are not identical.

Thank you for this handsome and fascinating post, quidnunc!

An essay that includes the Simurgh, Borges, Dante, Grover from Sesame Street, and Tyler Motherfucking Durden.

I do so love the Internets. I wish there were more of them.

[this be just dandy]

May a monstrous bird convey a thousand golden bananas to you...

Golden quidnunc: simian treasure!

See here now, all this highfalutin' fawning. Why it's just silly, that's what.

*reads links*

I . . . I humbly apologize for my insouciant insolence. All praise be to Quidnunc for rockin' tha hizzy til we're all freakin' dizzy!

"Why should there be enmity between us and the powers of darkness or powers of darkness and those of the light? There is only love!"


This is perhaps the single best post I've seen on MoFi. I visited all the links and was sorry there were no more. A splendid job, quid kid!

I'd just like to clarify one thing for anyone who reads the "wondrous" link all the way to the end (which I highly recommend -- it's a great story). When you get to the sentence:
And from that time, Hirmiz Shah abandoned all things (jazz) and left the world and went into the wilderness and became a darwish.
it's helpful to know that "jazz" is not what you think it is, it's a word in a Semitic language, probably Arabic (though there's a lot of Aramaic in the story, like Melka d Anhura 'the King of Light'), related to the Arabic verb j-z-' 'divide, separate'; in other words, jazz is the original Mandean term for the practice of abandoning all things. Nothing to do with Louis Armstrong.

OK, I'm off to Mount Kaf now!

Mount Meru...

Many paths,
same mountain.

Thirty, made pure by their sufferings, reach the great peak of the Simurgh. At last they behold him; they realize that they are the 5imurgh, and that the Simurgh is each of them and all of them.

"w00+!!!1" They all cried in unison, "7h1r7y b1rD5 pwnz jooo!!1!!eleven! teh 6r1ffn 15 teh n00b!!!111!!!"

Why thanks, y'all!

I was particularly hoping languagehat would turn up, as I've been missing him from round these parts. I even searched his incredible blog for "simurgh" and was shocked to find no mention - though perhaps now he'll post an entry about jazz ;)

Awesome post quidnunc!

I love the fact that the Simurgh is related in the "being" link to Grover in The Monster at the End of this Book.

That roolz. the Purple People Eater a Simurgh?

the Simurgh, Borges, Dante, Grover from Sesame Street, and Tyler Motherfucking Durden

That's gonna make for one trippy novel. Quite a post!

They fight crime.

Glorious glorious stuff, quiddy. Many thanks and many (((((.

I even searched his incredible blog for "simurgh" and was shocked to find no mention

It won't happen again: Here ya go.

Here's a gorgeous illustration from Conference of the Birds (in the stupendous Islamic Collection of the Metropolitan Museum, which I highly recommend to anyone in or visiting NYC -- not only is it great material well displayed, but it's relatively unpopular, so you'll have it mostly to yourself).

There are some nice pictures on this Russian page, and here's a contemporary image.

Because the simurgh could heal anything with its touch, medical enterprises are often called by its name.

*bestows feathers all round*

Hail to thee, blithe Quidnunc!
Bird thou never wert,
That from Heaven, or near it,
Pourest thy full heart
In profuse strains of unpremeditated art.

apologies to Percy

Here ya go ...

WOAH! Thirty bananas for this amazing fellow!

We are all Quidnunc. Quidnunc is all of us.

The butterfly, a cabbage-white,
(His honest idiocy of flight)
Will never now, it is too late,
Master the art of flying straight,
Yet has -- who knows so well as I? --
A just sense of how not to fly:
He lurches here and here by guess
And God and hope and hopelessness.
Even the acrobatic swift
Has not his flying-crooked gift.
-- Robert Graves, "Flying Ctooked"

It is that dream

It's that dream we carry with us,
That something wonderful will happen,
That it has to happen,
That time will open,
That the heart will open,
That doors will open,
That the mountin will open,
That wells will leap up,
That the dream will open,
That one morning we'll slip in
To a harbour that wer've never known.

-- Olav H. Hauge, trans. Robert Bly

As the full moon rises...

As the full moon rises
The swan sings
In sleep
On the lake of the mind.

-- Kenneth Rexroth

I live my life in growing orbits

I live my life in growing orbits
which move out over the things of the world.
Perhaps I can never achieve the last,
but that will be my attempt.

I am circling around God, around the ancient tower,
and I have been circling for a thousand years,
and I still don't know if I am a falcon. or a storm,
or a great song.

-- Rainer Maria Rilke, trans Robert Bly

The bell is full of wind
though it does not ring.
The bird is full of flight
though it is still.
The sky is full of clouds
though it is alone.
The word is full of voice
though no one speaks it.
Everything is full of fleeing
though there are no roads.

Everything is fleeing
towards its presence.
-- Roberto Juarroz from Sixth Vertical Poetry trans W.S. Merwin

Open House

I work as hard as I can
to have nothig to do.

Birds climb their rich ladder
of choruses.

They have tasted the top of the tree
and they are not staying.

The whole sky says,
Your move.
-- Naomi Shihab Nye


Your absence has gone through me
Like thread through a needle.
Everything I do is stitched with its color.
-- W.S. Merwin

The beautiful thing is starting toward me
I being son of the sun
The white-shell bead horse is starting
toward me
From the center of the sun's home
it is starting toward me
It eats out of the white-shell basket
The dark clouds' dew streams from it
as it starts toward me
The pollen from the beautiful flowers
streams from its mouth
as it starts toward me
Wit its beautiful neight it calls as it starts
toward me
Soft goods of all sorts are attached to it
as it starts toward me
Hard good sof all sorts are attached to it
as it starts toward me
It shall continue to increase without fail
as it starts toward me
It shall be beautiful of it as it starts
toward me
It shall be beautiful behind as it starts
toward me
Good and everlasting one am I
as it starts toward me.
-- traditional, Dineh

The Rose of Time

when the watchman falls asleep
you turn back with the storm
to grow old embracing is
the rose of time

when bird roads define the sky
you look behind at the sunset
to emerge in disappearance is
the rose of time

when the knife is bent in water
you cross the bridge stepping on flute-songs
to cry in the conspiracy is
the rose of time

when a pen draws the horizon
you're awakened by a gong from the East
to blow in the echoes is
the rose of time

in the mirror there is always this moment
this moment leads to the door of rebirth
the door opens to the sea
the rose of time
-- Bai Dao

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