fruitful thinking

There are certain things we take for granted in life.

Like the fact that certain fruit – cherries, apples, oranges, peaches etc. – are more or less round; and the fact that others – lemons, mangoes, kiwi fruit, strawberries – aren’t. And that there are fruit like plums that can be round or not, and others, like pears, that are so special and specific that they have their own shape name: pear-shaped.

Sometimes the things we take for granted are in fact not true.
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navigational skills

Although I am a frequent user of public transport, it’s been a long time since I travelled any distance by car. Recently, though, on a trip to Galicia’s Costa da Morte, I spent many hours as passenger – and navigator – in a rental car.

I like maps and have a reasonable sense of direction, so I don’t actually regret declining the GPS option, but it certainly wasn’t all plain sailing: much of the time was spent juggling a road map, which seemed to show nothing smaller than an A road, a trail map, which showed all the tourist routes – many of which turned out to be suitable only for walkers, and Google maps on a phone that was having trouble connecting to the local network.
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transcreation II

Last week, in the post Coast to Coast, I briefly mentioned transcreation. For those unfamiliar with the term, it’s a portmanteau word derived from translation and creation.

Translation is seldom easy and, depending on your definition of the word, translation of poetry may be considered impossible: should you focus on form or content? on sound, on patterns of metre or rhyme, or on meaning?
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missing days

Although I was alert enough to remember the Chinese New Year a few weeks ago and make a semi-relevant post, my mind has been full of the general rubbish and rubble of life and I seem to have missed a lot of “days” recently: St David’s Day, International Book Day, World Wildlife Day, International Women’s Day, and no doubt at least a handful of others.

So here are some daffodils for St David’s:
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binge

Apparently Monday was Blue Monday – the most depressing day of the year, when the weather is lousy, the days are still too short and we are all despairing over having failed to keep our New Year resolutions.

I don’t make resolutions – which is probably the best way not to break them – but I do recognise that for me this last week has little to do with healthy eating, exercise, diets or other good habits that people tend to adopt at this time of year.
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success and enchantment

In the last few days, I’ve been hankering for an English version of the expression Feliz salida y entrada, which the Spanish use in the days leading up to New Year. It just doesn’t really have an equivalent in English.

When you speak two languages, the second one changes your world view and gives you access to all kinds of expressions and ideas that you didn’t realise existed when you were limited to your mother tongue.
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not my idea

I reckon I started writing poetry some fifty years ago.

Since then, there have been periods when ideas have flowed thick and fast. There have also been times when I have forgotten about poetry, perhaps for years on end.

And then there have been times when I have not forgotten about poetry, but it seems to have forgotten about me.
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