The Art of Tetman Callis

Some of the stories and poems may be inappropriate for persons under 16

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Entries from May 2014

Praise the ammunition and pass the lord

May 31st, 2014 · No Comments

“Preparations for war, which are recommended by the most misleading of adages as the best way of ensuring peace, on the contrary create first of all the belief in each of the adversaries that the other desires a rupture, a belief which brings the rupture about, and then, when it has occurred, the further belief […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust · Politics & Law

Filling the gone god hole

May 30th, 2014 · No Comments

“The event that Nietzsche called ‘the death of God’ — less metaphorically, the collapse of Christian faith as a living factor in the lives and psyches of most people in Europe and the European diaspora — left an immense void in our collective life, and a great many people went looking for some secular equivalent […]

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Tags: Jessa Crispin · Lit & Crit

Who could you be now?

May 29th, 2014 · No Comments

“It is as difficult to present a fixed image of a character as of societies and passions. For a character alters no less than they do, and if one tries to take a snapshot of what is relatively immutable in it, one finds it presenting a succession of different aspects (implying that it is incapable […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Nursing the wound

May 28th, 2014 · No Comments

“The disgraced ambassador, the under-secretary placed suddenly on the retired list, the man about town who finds himself cold-shouldered, the lover who has been shown the door, examine, sometimes for months on end, the event that has shattered their hopes; they turn it over and over like a projectile fired at them they know not […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Lovebots for boys

May 27th, 2014 · 2 Comments

“The ideal woman has the earning powers of a CEO, breasts like an inflatable doll, no hips at all and the tidy, hairless labia of an unviolated six-year-old. The world gets harder and harder.” – Hilary Mantel, “Some Girls Want Out”

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law

The Reverend Dr. King

May 26th, 2014 · No Comments

“One who breaks an unjust law must do so openly, lovingly, and with a willingness to accept the penalty.” – Martin Luther King, Jr., “Letter from Birmingham Jail”

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Tags: Martin Luther King · Politics & Law · Verandah

Statement of intent

May 25th, 2014 · No Comments

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Tags: Verandah

The Reverend Dr. King

May 25th, 2014 · No Comments

“An unjust law is a code that a numerical or power majority group compels a minority group to obey but does not make binding on itself. This is difference made legal. By the same token, a just law is a code that a majority compels a minority to follow and that it is willing to […]

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Tags: Martin Luther King · Politics & Law · Verandah

The Reverend Dr. King

May 24th, 2014 · No Comments

“How does one determine when a law is just or unjust? A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law, or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of St. Thomas Aquinas, an […]

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Tags: Martin Luther King · Politics & Law · Verandah

The Reverend Dr. King

May 23rd, 2014 · No Comments

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly.” – Martin Luther King, Jr., “Letter from Birmingham Jail”

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Tags: Economics · Martin Luther King · Politics & Law · Verandah

Sing it!

May 22nd, 2014 · No Comments

“I wondered whether music might not be the unique example of what might have been—if the invention of language, and the formation of words, the analysis of ideas had not intervened—the means of communications between souls. It is like a possibility that has come to nothing; humanity has developed along other lines, those of spoken […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Gardening on the page

May 21st, 2014 · No Comments

“The first task—and thrill—for the writer is to surprise himself with his own imagination, and relay that surprise to the reader. Whether that’s done on the syntactic level or by having the protagonist forget to wipe his feet is up to the writer and the story he’s conjuring out of nothing. What’s important is that […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Terese Svoboda

6 x 6 x 2

May 20th, 2014 · 2 Comments

“Plots are as cheap as dirt, all of them variations on Jack in the Beanstalk or Cinderella. It’s the language, the emotion, the point of view that make a plot seem brilliant, the way the writer reveals what’s been withheld.” – Terese Svoboda, “To Plot or Not”

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Terese Svoboda

It’s out there somewhere, keep looking

May 19th, 2014 · No Comments

“Everything is arranged in this life as though we entered it carrying a burden of obligations contracted in some former life; there is no reason inherent in the conditions of life on this earth that can make us consider ourselves obliged to do good, to be kind and thoughtful, even to be polite, nor for […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Take two of these every day

May 18th, 2014 · No Comments

“Nature scarcely seems capable of giving us any but quite short illnesses. But medicine has developed the art of prolonging them.” – Marcel Proust, The Captive (trans. Moncrieff and Kilmartin)

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Tags: Economics · Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

A Dog by the Ears

May 17th, 2014 · No Comments

A story of mine called “A Dog by the Ears” was published last October in Robot Melon Issue 13. I have posted it slightly to the right as you face your computer monitor, in the sidebar called Previously Published Stories.  

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Tags: Previously Published Stories · Words

Cheaper by the dozen

May 17th, 2014 · No Comments

“What is more usual than a lie, whether it is a question of masking the daily weaknesses of the constitution which we wish to be thought strong, of concealing a vice, or of going off, without offending other people, to do the thing that we prefer? It is the most necessary means of self-preservation, and […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

If you believe in magic

May 16th, 2014 · No Comments

“Most people in the industrial world believe in progress the way that peasants in the Middle Ages believed in the wonder-working bones of the local saint. It’s an unquestioned truism in contemporary culture that newer technologies are by definition better than older ones, that old beliefs are disproved by the mere passage of time, and […]

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Tags: Economics · Jessa Crispin · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law

Shadowtime

May 15th, 2014 · No Comments

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Tags: Verandah

Running in every family

May 15th, 2014 · No Comments

“Humanity is a very old institution. Heredity and cross-breeding have given insuperable strength to bad habits, faulty reflexes. One person sneezes and gasps because he is passing a rosebush, another breaks out in a rash at the smell of wet paint; others get violent stomach-aches if they have to set out on a journey, and […]

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Tags: Economics · Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

That’s what makes it exciting

May 14th, 2014 · No Comments

“Beneath any carnal attraction at all deep, there is the permanent possibility of danger.” – Marcel Proust, The Captive (trans. Moncrieff and Kilmartin)

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

I’ll wrassle ya fer it

May 13th, 2014 · No Comments

“Masculinity is, as a word, make-shift, and as a practical concept, uselessly broad, and wide open to opportunism and disingenuity. May infants make a claim to masculinity? Probably not, but everybody else can. Confidence and strength, both of mind and body, a willingness to pay a great price in defense of something nominally outside the […]

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Tags: Economics · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law

Alien Lovestock

May 12th, 2014 · No Comments

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Tags: Verandah

Does it hurt yet?

May 12th, 2014 · No Comments

“It is often simply from lack of creative imagination that we do not go far enough in suffering. And the most terrible reality brings us, at the same time as suffering, the joy of a great discovery, because it merely gives a new and clear form to what we have long been ruminating without suspecting […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Not now that we know of those who shall here remain nameless (but they leave tracks as they pass)

May 11th, 2014 · No Comments

“Just as we do not possess that sense of direction with which certain birds are endowed, so we lack the sense of our own visibility as we lack that of distances, imagining as quite close to us the interested attention of people who on the contrary never give us a thought, and not suspecting that […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Topsy and the turvies

May 10th, 2014 · No Comments

“The rule among the human race—a rule that naturally admits of exceptions—is that the reputedly hard are the weak whom nobody wanted, and that the strong, caring little whether they are wanted or not, have alone that gentleness which the vulgar herd mistakes for weakness.” – Marcel Proust, Sodom and Gomorrah (trans. Moncrieff and Kilmartin)

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Hold it right there

May 9th, 2014 · 2 Comments

“It’s impossible to escape yourself in writing a book; all the darkness or the beauty or fineness inside you will find its way out. Even a writer who’s willing to be inauthentic will be revealed, because the work will feel inauthentic to the reader.” – Averil Dean (interview with Erika Marks at On Writing, Publishing […]

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Tags: Averil Dean · Lit & Crit

Morph was my name

May 8th, 2014 · No Comments

“We passionately long for there to be another life in which we shall be similar to what we are here below. But we do not pause to reflect that, even without waiting for that other life, in this life, after a few years, we are unfaithful to what we once were, to what we wished […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Eat me

May 7th, 2014 · No Comments

“Theories and schools, like microbes and corpuscles, devour one another and by their strife ensure the continuity of life.” – Marcel Proust, Sodom and Gomorrah (trans. Moncrieff and Kilmartin)

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Tags: Economics · Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust

Under its own spell

May 6th, 2014 · No Comments

“If habit is a second nature, it prevents us from knowing our first, whose cruelties it lacks as well as its enchantments.” – Marcel Proust, Sodom and Gomorrah (trans. Moncrieff and Kilmartin)

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Marcel Proust