Author Archives: JMN

About JMN

I live in Texas and devote much of my time to easel painting on an amateur basis. I stream a lot of music, mostly jazz, throughout the day. I like to read and memorize poetry.

The Nays of Texas Are Upon It

“Knowing truth is important. Right and wrong are truth, not feelings. And they are the same for everyone. Our creator is the source of the rules for right and wrong and they come from his character.” (Member of the public … Continue reading

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Breaking: Poetry in the Air?

Working head of state one day, gone the next. Sic transit gloria. An adoring contingent of Great Britain has lately felt its feelings in splendid public fashion for a queen whose reign exceeded average life expectancy in most of the … Continue reading

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What He Simply Tries to Do

“In his view, painting and drawing are exactly the same difficulty and take roughly as long as each other.” (William Feaver, art critic and one of Auerbach’s regular sitters) Asked whether he has learned something new about his face, [Auerbach] … Continue reading

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One Good Pareidolia Deserves Another

Rocky debate swirls around a squiggle on the “fingerlike menhir” at the entrance to the Dolmen of Guadalperal in Spain. (See Opposite a vaguely anthropomorphic shape etched on the menhir’s side lies the squiggle. Angel Castaño, a philologist, believes … Continue reading

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The Dolmen Tells the Wind, ‘Hard Weather Ahead’

A megalithic archaeological site has been exposed by drought in Spain. Some 2,000 years older than Stonehenge, the Bronze Age sepulcher was deliberately flooded in 1963 as part of a rural development project. Like the skeleton of an extinct sea … Continue reading

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Wipe It Off, Gray Lady

Free expression isn’t just a feature of democracy; it is a necessary prerequisite. (Editorial Board, “Censorship Is the Refuge of the Weak,” New York Times, 9-10-22) No big deal. Just a nicety of style, a peccadillo none but the persnickety … Continue reading

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Tohu Bohu in the Land of Steak Frites

“We have to change our mentality so that eating a barbecued entrecôte is no longer a symbol of virility… If you want to resolve the climate crisis, you have to reduce meat consumption, and that’s not going to happen so … Continue reading

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Asked and Answered

“The American press is infatuated to the point of intoxication with ‘democracy,’ ” [Buchanan] wrote in 1991. To make his point, he compared the Marine Corps and corporations like IBM to the federal government. “Only the last is run on … Continue reading

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Chasing Command: The Kicker

Statistic: Forty-nine of the 50 highest-scoring players in American football history are kickers. “And the first ball comes off my foot like a rocket, and then the next one and the next,” he says. “I just felt like I had … Continue reading

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Romancing ‘Gilgamesh’s Snake’

The transliterations bracketed below are mine. In them, tā’ marbūṭa is ẗ, and I show the lām of the article as assimilated to a following solar letter. For example: [‘ayyuhā-s-sayyidu] instead of [‘ayyuhā-l-sayyidu]. My character set, contrived to avoid digraphs, … Continue reading

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