Poem of the day

Sommernacht
by Gottfried Keller (1819-1890)

Es wallt das Korn weit in die Runde,
Und wie ein Meer dehnt es sich aus;
Doch liegt auf seinem stillen Grunde
Nicht Seegewürm noch andrer Graus:
Da träumen Blumen nur von Kränzen
Und trinken der Gestirne Schein.
O goldnes Meer, dein friedlich Glänzen
Saugt meine Seele gierig ein!

In meiner Heimat grünen Talen,
Da herrscht ein alter schöner Brauch;
Wann hell die Sommersterne strahlen,
Der Glühwurm schimmert durch den Strauch:
Dann geht ein Flüstern und ein Winken,
Das sich dem Ährenfelde naht,
Da geht ein nächtlich Silberblinken
Von Sicheln durch die goldne Saat.

Das sind die Bursche, jung und wacker,
Die sammeln sich im Feld zuhauf
Und suchen den gereiften Acker
Der Witwe oder Waise auf,
Die keines Vaters, keiner Brüder
Und keines Knechtes Hilfe weiß –
Ihr schneiden sie den Segen nieder,
Die reinste Lust ziert ihren Fleiß.

Schon sind die Garben fest gebunden
Und schön in einen Kranz gebracht;
Wie lieblich flohn die stillen Stunden,
Es war ein Spiel in kühler Nacht!
Nun wird geschwärmt und hell gesungen
Im Garbenkreis, bis Morgenduft
Die nimmermüden, braunen Jungen
Zur eignen schweren Arbeit ruft.

Poem of the day

Little Billee
by William Makepeace Thackeray (1811–1863)

There were three sailors in Bristol City
Who took a boat and went to sea.

But first with beef and captain’s biscuits
And pickled pork they loaded she.

There was guzzling Jack, and gorging Jimmy,
And the youngster he was little Bil-ly.

Now very soon they were so greedy,
They didn’t leave not one split pea.

Says guzzling Jack to gorging Jimmy,
I am confounded hung-ery.

Says gorging Jim to guzzling Jacky,
We have no wittles, so we must eat we.

Says guzzling Jack to gorging Jimmy,
O gorging Jim, what a fool you be.

There’s little Bill as is young and tender,
We ’re old and tough—so let’s eat he.

O Bill, we’re going to kill and eat you,
So undo the collar of your chemie.

When Bill he heard this information,
He used his pocket-handkerchee.

O let me say my Catechism
As my poor mammy taught to me.

Make haste, make haste, says guzzling Jacky,
Whilst Jim pulled out his snicker-snee.

So Bill went up the main-top-gallant mast,
When down he fell on his bended knee.

He scarce had said his Catechism,
When up he jumps: ‛There’s land I see!

‛There’s Jerusalem and Madagascar
And North and South Ameri-key.

‛There’s the British fleet a-riding at anchor,
With Admiral Napier, K.C.B.’

So when they came to the Admiral’s vessel,
He hanged fat Jack and flogged Jim-my.

But as for little Bill, he made him
The Captain of a Seventy-three.

legal, smegal says the administration

The fact that this undoubtedly violates international law means nothing. Nonetheless, I expect the courts to strike this down. Not that Trump can’t do, he just can’t do it by executive order. Under current law, you can be denied asylum if you are found to be “firmly resettled” in a third country. See 8 CFR §208.15 for the definition of firm resettlement. The administration could change this regulation but to do so, they would have to use the procedures set forth in the Administrative Procedure Act. Alternatively, Congress could change the law by legislation. Since this is unlikely to hold up in court, I take it that this is just another piece of red meat thrown to Trump’s base to keep them happy.

The new rule breaks US laws written by Congress and international treaties the US adopted decades ago.

Poem of the day

Love Between Brothers and Sisters
by Isaac Watts (1674-1748)

Whatever brawls disturb the street,
⁠      There should be peace at home:
Where sisters dwell and brothers meet,
⁠      Quarrels should never come.

Birds in their little nests agree;
⁠      And ’tis a shameful sight,
When children of one family
⁠      Fall out and chide and fight.

Judicial activism (not that we should complain)

In the summer of 1990, I studied the law of the European Community (as it was then known) at a program in Brussels. The lecturer on European environmental law was an official from the European Commission. At a Q&A session afterward, he was very candid when asked about global warming (as it was then known). He said that upcoming elections in the UK and US made immediate action politically impossible but assured us that, once those elections were past, the issue would be dealt with. Boy, was he wrong! If it had been, this case would never have been brought and we would all be better off today.

Dutch ruling could trigger similar cases worldwide with citizens taking their governments to courts to make them act on climate promises

Poem of the day

Satisfied
by Mary Baker Eddy (1821-1910)

It matters not what be thy lot,
      So Love doth guide;
For storm or shine, pure peace is thine,
      Whate’er betide.

And of these stones, or tyrants’ thrones,
      God able is
To raise up seed—in thought and deed—
      To faithful His.

Aye, darkling sense, arise, go hence!
      Our God is good.
False fears are foes—truth tatters those,
      When understood.

Love looseth thee, and lifteth me,
      Ayont hate’s thrall:
There Life is light, and wisdom might,
      And God is All.

The centuries break, the earth-bound wake,
      God’s glorified!
Who doth His will—His likeness still—
      Is satisfied.

When sorrows come, they come not single spies

“Climate change, when layered onto a mix of economic instability, violence and weak governance, can become fuel — a threat multiplier that could aggravate Honduras’ vulnerabilities, leaving people little choice but to flee. Already, immigration analysts note that roughly half the adults apprehended at the U.S. border work in agriculture, underscoring the precarious nature of their lives at home.”

Farmers in rural Honduras and Guatemala are living on the edge of hunger, not knowing if the next harvest will come.

Game of the week

This week’s game is a little different in that it ends with a problem to be solved (solution in comments). It features a top grandmaster against a (relative) fish, who holds his own in a see-saw game and even stands better when he overlooks a tactic. Can you spot it?


Do you see the winning move?

Poem of the day

La Marseillaise
by Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle (1760-1836)

                  I

      Allons, enfants de la Patrie!
      Le jour de gloire est arrivé.
      Contre nous de la tyrannie
      L’étendard sanglant est levé! (bis)
      Entendez-vous dans les campagnes.
      Mugir ces féroces soldats?
      Ils viennent jusque dans vos bras
      Égorger vos fils, vos compagnes!
Aux armes, Citoyens! formez vos bataillons!
Marchons (bis), qu’un sang impur abreuve nos sillons.

                  II

      Que veut cette horde d’esclaves
      De traîtres, de rois conjurés?
      Pour qui ces ignobles entraves.
      Ces fers dès longtemps préparés? (bis)
      Français! pour nous, ah! quel outrage!
      Quels transports il doit exciter
      C’est nous qu’on ose méditer
      De rendre à l’antique esclavage!…
Aux armes, Citoyens! etc.

                  III

      Quoi! des cohortes étrangères
      Feraient la loi dans nos foyers!
      Quoi! ces phalanges mercenaires
      Terrasseraient nos fiers guerriers! (bis)
      Grand Dieu!… Par des mains enchaînées
      Nos fronts, sous le joug se ploiraient!
      De vils despotes deviendraient
      Les maîtres de nos destinées!…
Aux armes, Citoyens! etc.

                  IV

      Tremblez, tyrans! et vous perfides,
      L’opprobre de tous les partis.
      Tremblez!… Vos projets parricides
      Vont enfin recevoir leur prix. (bis)
      Tout est soldat pour vous combattre.
      S’ils tombent nos jeunes héros,
      La terre en produit de nouveaux
      Contre vous tout prêts à se battre.
Aux armes, Citoyens! etc.

                  V

      Français! En guerriers magnanimes
      Portez ou retenez vos coups.
      Épargnez ces tristes victimes
      À regret s’armant contre nous. (bis)
      Mais le despote sanguinaire!
      Mais les complices de Bouillé!
      Tous ces tigres qui sans pitié
      Déchirent le sein de leur mère…
Aux armes, Citoyens! formez vos bataillons!
Marchons (bis) qu’un sang impur abreuve nos sillons.

                  VI

      Amour sacré de la Patrie,
      Conduis, soutiens nos bras vengeurs!
      Liberté! Liberté chérie,
      Combats avec les défenseurs. (bis)
      Sous nos drapeaux, que la Victoire
      Accoure à tes mâles accents ;
      Que tes ennemis expirants
      Voient ton triomphe et notre gloire.
Aux armes, Citoyens! etc.