Sunday, 1 July 2012

A Dream within a Dream


It was my birthday yesterday.  I’ve now completed the first year of my second quarter century.  My goodness, I’m getting old!  I had a great time, so much so that I’ve still not fully recovered.  This is just a brief post to thank people for the numerous messages I got, directly, by email or on Facebook.  There are so many that it would take me at least a week to thank everyone personally.  You know how valued you all are, how important you are to me. 

I’m now twenty-six; I have at last attained the age of reason!  Not so Ana the Imp; she is only three years old, but, my goodness, what a path she has travelled in such a brief time.  I look back over past milestones with a sense of achievement.  I had something to say and I think I’ve said it reasonably well, in my own direct, caustic and inimitable fashion. 

I would like to thank all past contributors, those who have taken the time and made the effort to add their own views.  I hate censorship so I publish almost everything, agree with me or not.  In fact I really do not mind disagreement.  What I will not and cannot publish is direct attacks on myself or other contributors.  Oh, yes, I have had them aplenty, including death threats from PETA animal rights fanatics – these have come after blogs about hunting and fur.  I’ve had people denouncing to me as an imperialist, a Nazi, a fascist, a gay basher, blah de blah de blah.  One even called me an Illinois Nazi.  Illinois?  Your guess is as good as mine! 

Yes, I admit to my own prejudices – I simply can’t stand the ignorant, the stupid and the second rate.  I suppose I did these people a favour in not publishing, in that their incoherent and spluttering words said so much more about them than about me. 

It’s all been great fun.  I write because I have to and because there are things that have to be said.  I rather see myself as a Donna Quixote, tilting fruitlessly, perhaps, at the windmills of modern life, the giants of ignorance with which we are all beset.  I owe my outspokenness in large measure to my parents and grandparents, my father’s father in particular, who taught me that silence is simply not an option.  I could never have lived in places like Stalin’s Russia or Hitler’s Germany, places where silence offered the only refuge.  I speak, I write, therefore I am. 

So, on we go.  The cycles get faster; time moves inexorably forward.  I think I may very well be entering a new state of existence, that the chrysalis is set to open once more.  I was Clio the Muse, I am Ana the Imp.  Soon I may be something else altogether. 

Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow-
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand-
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep- while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream? 

31 comments:

  1. Hi Ana!
    Happy birthday! - one day late :-)
    I'm glad I discovered you and your excellent blog back in 2010, and it wouldn't be a stretch to say that your blogging style was one of my early influences in this medium.

    I'm sure another commenter will fill you in on the "Illinois Nazis" comment, but in case they don't it's a reference to the American Comedy Movie, The Blues Brothers. The title characters are delayed by a traffic am caused by a Illinois Nazi Party rally. One of the Blues Brothers says wryly, "I hate Illinois Nazis..." amid proceeds to nearly run them over, forcing them to jump off a bridge into the water below. :-)
    -Jay

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    1. Ah, Jay, thank you so much. That's one mystery solved! Thanks also for your good wishes. :-)

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  2. Congratulations to your parents, well done, this world is a far better place with your presence, Imp of great worth, Carry On!. Look up Skokie Illinois for the Nazi reference.

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  3. Happy birthday, Ana. In the transition from pure excitement of first discovery to the realization that a full life requires a certain amount of plain hard work at something you believe worthwhile, I hope you always retain something of the enfant terrible. Take the time to play; there will always be more than enough work to last a thousand lifetimes. If possible, make your work your play, and your play your work. Somehow, I don't think you will find that too difficult!

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    1. You understand me very well, Calvin. :-)

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  4. Happy birthday Ana for yesterday.
    I enjoy your writing immensly. But i've always been a sucker for an intelligent woman.

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  5. Ana, A very Happy Birthday to you, albeit belatedly!

    Wish I was 26.........

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    1. AH, WhW, when I was in my teens I always wanted to be older. Now I've reached a stage in my life when I rather wish time would slow down just a tad. :-)

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  6. "Illinois Nazi" - my guess would be that this is a "Blues Brothers" quote. It's many years since I saw the film but I vaguely remember the Blue Brothers expressing a dislike of "Illinois Nazis" and using their car to disrupt one of their parades.

    We could do with something equally pithy for the social parasites (mainly but not exclusively left-wing) who believe the world owes them a living and who do nothing but whine and complain....

    Anyway, Happy Birthday for yesterday!

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    1. WG, yes, thanks. You and Jay (bibliophilica above)have arrived at the right conclusion!

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  7. Happy Birthday Ana, I hope you had a great time. The barometer of truth is often the reaction one gets from the sick element. If you metamorphose that is all well and good. The Imp may be young but she is wise beyond her years.

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    1. Richard, my dear friend, you are most kind. :-)

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  8. Thanks for posting this poem, I love Poe. Glad you have a happy birthday. From one with the end of the second quarter in sight, I hope you have many more!

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    1. And thank you too, Joe, my newest friend. :-)

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  9. I really love it that you speak your mind. It's always good to stand by and speak about the things that you strongly believe in. Not many people do this and I really admire you for that. Disagreements obviously shouldn't matter, but as you said ignorance is something that gets difficult to stand.

    I'm glad that i found your blog and got to know you (even though it's been just a few days).

    And you shouldn't worry about age. Your intelligence and charm are going to keep you young forever. :)

    Happy Birthday once again ... have a wonderful life ... lots of love *: :)

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    1. You are very kind, Saif. I'm glad you found it too. :-)

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  10. Hey - many congratulations Ana. I don't always agree with what you write, but it's a damn good read, so may your next 25 be as opinionated as the first(!)

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    1. That's one thing you can be sure of, CWB. Heaps of thanks! Hey, how boring life would be if we all agreed with one another. Agree or not, I'm so glad you take an interest. :-)

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  11. Oh, somewhat belatedly I fear, but very many happy returns to a fine writer and thinker, and enemy of cant!

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    1. Thanks, Dominic, belated or not. :-)

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  12. I love the way you write, it's fab ! I hope you had a wonderful birthday, and keep writing with all barriers down. Not many have the courage to do so.

    http://myfroley.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks, My Froley, your encouragement is very much appreciated. :-)

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    2. The pics on your blog make me feel hungry!

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  13. Happy Birthday, Ana. Keep on punchin'. This ol' world needs all the common sense it can get.

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    1. You and I shall punch together, Bob. :-)

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