All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace

This is the title of the 1967 poem by Richard Brautigan and of course that is the name of the great three-part documentary by Adam Curtis. If you haven’t watched it, please do yourself a favour and take a look.

All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace

by Richard Brautigan

I’d like to think (and
the sooner the better!)
of a cybernetic meadow
where mammals and computers
live together in mutually
programming harmony
like pure water
touching clear sky.

I like to think
(right now, please!)
of a cybernetic forest
filled with pines and electronics
where deer stroll peacefully
past computers
as if they were flowers
with spinning blossoms.

I like to think
(it has to be!)
of a cybernetic ecology
where we are free of our labors
and joined back to nature,
returned to our mammal brothers and sisters,
and all watched over
by machines of loving grace.

The Elephant’s Journey

It has taken me almost a year to be able to face reading the adventures that Solomon the elephant experienced in his travels from Lisbon to Vienna. It Has not been because it is about an elephant, or due to the story itself. It was because as I started reading the book a year or so ago, I heard the news that its author had died. I had since then, consciously or not, avoided reading anything by Dom José Saramago. I just couldn’t… Maybe it is now time to come to terms with it.
Wait for me Solomon, wait for me…

Jus Primae Noctis

Castelo feudal
Image via Wikipedia

El señor feudal era un hombre alto, delgado y anguloso, de modales refinados. Los recién casados lo miraron azorados, con un pavor no exento de respeto.

“Vengo a reclamar mis derechos – dijo el señor suavemente -. La primera noche me pertenece”. Los aldeanos no se atrevieron a replicar. El blanco caballo sin jinetes que se encontraba junto al barón piafó. El soldado que lo sujetaba de las riendas le acarició el percuezo para calmarlo.

El señor feudal sonrió. “Vas a venir conmigo al castillo, pichoncito – dijo -: verás que te va a gustar”. Acto seguido obligó a su corcel a dar la media vuelta y se alejó en dirección al fuerte señorial, no sin antes haber hecho una seña a sus guadias.

Los soldados sujetaron al novio y lo montaron en el caballo blanco. La novia se quedó llorando en la aldea.

Manuel R. Campos Castro