regretting the earth

“Do you know a cure for me?” Why yes,” he said, “I know a cure for everything. Salt water.” “Salt water?” I asked him. “Yes,” he said, “in one way or the other. Sweat, or tears, or the salt sea.” ― Karen Blixen, Seven Gothic Tales

It pisses me right off when I’ve been for my sunrise beach walk and the day goes to hell anyway. I mean, honestly, it’s bs. I wake early, I exercise, I photograph and identify stuff, I get fresh air…. I go home and potter about (because I’ve reached the age where doing that and using that word to describe it fits) and then something happens or doesn’t happen and I’m slammed



into the abyss again.


So I had therapy yesterday, which was really good, not least because she forgot about last week’s cognitive errors homework (so did I). She asked me really focused and specific questions and somehow it felt good, but tbh I can’t actually remember why now. Gotta love bipolar brain eh. This week I’m supposed to think about how Dog is like me. So far I’ve come up with the fact that we are both wonky and that we whine and growl a lot. A good start methinks. After that, I had lunch with a friend I haven’t seen in far too long (my fault) and then coffee with another friend nearer home. A good day and a remarkably sociable one, I have extremely good taste in friends.


I have another little instalment in the neighbour saga for you too. It’s her birthday tomorrow, which I’d completely forgotten (I’m worse than useless at remembering birthdays, it’s not a new thing) and her daughter invited me to a braai at her place. My heart sank (and since it’s already made of lead, that’s saying something) and to cut a very long and boring account of two conversations short, I am very pleased to announce that I’m not going to the braai. I got through it diplomatically too. What I haven’t told you (because I forgot) is that I’m waging war by the poisonous and devious means of never, ever being negative about the douchebag of a bf, and only ever allowing myself a very small display of wounded something or other. Idk, that sentence got away from me somewhat. There shall be no conflict, for I abhor conflict (unless I can just chuck a fragmentation grenade at it and skedaddle). I’ve mellowed a fuckload in my middle years. I could’ve saved myself the aggravation today if only I’d just said, “tomorrow? Dammit, I already have plans.”


It was, at least, a truly lovely morning on the beach. The visiting dog leaves on Monday, which is going to hurt like hell, but there you go.

Regretting the Earth (Le regret de la terre), Jules Supervielle

One day, we shall say: ‘That was the time of sunlight,
Remember how it illumined the slightest twig,
The old woman as brightly as the astonished girl,
How it gave a colour to things as soon as it fell,
Kept pace with the galloping horse; halted with him.
It was the unforgettable time when we were on Earth,
Where sound resulted if something was dropped,
We looked about with the eyes of connoisseurs,
Our ears comprehended every nuance of air
And when a friend’s footsteps approached we knew,
We gathered a flower or picked up a polished pebble.
That time when we could never take hold of smoke,
Ah! That’s all our hands know how to take hold of now.’


If I could imitate Piaf’s accent, I would sneer supercilliously now, jab the air violently with a cigarette on an outrageously long cigarette holder and in my sexiest and throatiest voice, I would snarl, “me, I regret everything.” I wouldn’t mean it, but there’s no room for compromise in melodrama. It’s a beautiful poem isn’t it?


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battlescarred, bright, bewildered, bent, blue & bipolar

43 thoughts on “regretting the earth”

  1. It’s too long to quote the poem but Robert Frost’s wall mending neighbour had a point when he insisted that “good fences make good neighbours”. You already have a fence, but it seems like neighbour’s bf doesn’t think it’s high enough. Let him build one around her house… oh I suppose he has metaphorically done that but it is her fault too for handing him the metaphorical stones. I’m so sorry this situation pissed on your good day. If you are inclined to pull out your cigarette holder and belt out “Non, je ne regrette rien” from your stoep, don’t forget to wear your slinkiest Edith Piaf gown too. That’ll learn ’em!

    Seriously, this situation sucks but it’s J’s loss. Hold your head high, my dear friend. xxox

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Love it homie!!! Frost is one my all time life cronies, up there with Eliot and Wordsworth and the best of them, sweet peasant John Clare, who spent the last thirty years of his life as a A Bipolar Casualty in a lunatic asylum in the English countryside writing the greatest most spontaneously lovely despairing lost fierce insanely lonely often straight up psychotic rambling tender words of emotion while supporting his nicotine habit by sitting on the portico of All Saint’s Church in the late afternoons to scribble love sonnets for schoolboys for pinches of tobacco. So, yes, BEST, educated himself by candlelight after long days dying in the serf-peasant-killing-field. Was very happy as a young boy and young man! Brain borked anyway…. Frost, yes! But not the one they teach in school. Not the miserable sentimentalism of Birches. This! From a late poem, after the suicide of a son and the death of a baby, in rueful acknowledgement of what our hearts ache SO MUCH FOR.

      Here are your waters and your wastering place

      Drink and be whole again beyond confusion.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Thanks lots my friend – next time you’re here I’ll haul out the gown as you can dress up as whoever you’re going to be, and we can sneer imperiously in their direction from the stoep.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s a beautiful poem. It’s my youth. And the smoke of my now. Love me some Dinesen, too. Need to reread Out of Africa. Hell of a writer. I think of her all lonely and regal in America, writing on, living with her ghosts.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Sometimes we (South Africans) take the piss somewhat, by acting all misty eyed and saying Aaaahfrica or I had a farm in Aaaahfrica. Love her too though, very much – and not least for that quote. You’re a true Romantic eh? Me too.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I used to say the same thing! Was my ex’s favorite movie and book. Ahhhfica. Yep, the last romantic. Burning up my fuel up here, alone. But s’okay, life turns, the leaves turn, see my way again.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. All these erudite, eloquent commenters are hard acts to follow!!!! My Dog!

    I did read the entire poem (which I don’t usually do because I dislike most poetry) and I was impressed….

    Sorry to be so meh – it has been that kind of evening….
    Off for canine therapy.

    On a totally separate note, reading this article might entertain us – I just found it on the “Memoir” tag w/WordPress Reader. I immediately thought of you – it’s just what our world needs, wouldn’t you say? ;)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think I’ve still got about four scientology escapee memoirs loaded up to read, and I’ve already read a handful. Idk why I do it.

      You should always read the poems I post, I have utterly and magnificently exquisite taste in poetry *ducks for cover*

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You so silly.

        You read $$$$ escapee books the way I read my psychic medium/afterlife/NDE stuff.

        I’m (too) fascinated with the afterlife – I always have been interested, but now I am more than ever because of my Dad.

        It’s an escape to read about the subject since so many afterlife anecdotes are about a better, easier existence than the crazy shit found here. Evidently there’s no mention of bipolar-related suffering over there or wherever “there” is, and I l***reallly**** like that.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Nah, I didn’t go. Fuck that. And as far as time zones are concerned, oddly enough were pretty much on the same one, give or take an hour for daylight spendings and savings, for half the year.


      1. Ah! Good, that helps. I’m sure it was for the best not to go, what is the point… when people start to forsake you ’cause you’re different it may feel like you’re missing out at first, until you realise you’re really not. But you know this better than me.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. It took me a long painful time to come to that conclusion. With my “emotional issues” it has always been very very hard to let go of people, especially knowing how our interchange or relationship “could” have been. Knowing what they could do for me and what I could do for them, and them not seeing it… it caused me to think of suicide more concretely and more often than anything else. It has only been a relatively recent dawning that actually, people do have all these potentials avenues they could walk, and some indeed would fit very very nicely with us, even for short times, and you think “why not just let them happen!?”, but they just don’t. For whatever reason, often they don’t, or turn away from that path and choose another. It took me quite a bit of mind bending to finally see them as they actually were, on that new path, and realise “hmmm, I actually don’t like you that way”. The old person you knew is gone. You mourn them, they are gone, you let them go.
            From my late mum, to a superficial acquaintance at my daughter’s school, it applies to a hell of a lot of people I’ve come across in my life. Your neighbour in particular reminds me of quite a few people.
            Don’t let her get to you, if you can.

            Liked by 1 person

  4. Grumble and moan. Beeps hates it when people take the high road. And that you certainly have. I would NOT be able to hold it together like that. Suck-ola that doing it takes such a toll on you. I still want to go psycho bipolar on them and become that screeching, red faced woman they end up calling the cops on.

    And sweetie, you’re not a ghost even tho they’re making you feel like one (I’ll add my thanks for the poem here). You’re flesh a blood, a thinking, feeling person your neighbor is negating through her silent acceptance of her bf’s behavior. Screw them. Take the high road, by all means, but screw them! Do not take their bullshit onto yourself. Hugs.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. As much as I’d love to be my friend Blahpolar’s Greys alien -worshipping neighbor ;)
      it’s best that I’m not because I’d go over there and bust out a can of whup-ass!

      Blah is a GEM, a friend of the highest degree!!!!!!! I know the whole thing is a mess, especially as Blahpolar’s mother factors significantly into the history, but to be treated in such a way is so-not-cool, it’s colder than the temperatures found anywhere on this planet.

      I know Blah needs our encouragement and we’re here for you!!!
      I remain incredibly proud of you for being a class-act and not badmouthing the Anal Crevice a.k.a. the Orc “Vrong”!

      Courtesy of:

      Here are his other names:

      Dear Anal Crevice,
      If you were a Hobbit, your name would be Perugrin Mudruffin
      and if you were a (male) Man, your name would be Vir
      and if you were an Elf, your name would be Delerion
      and if you were a Dwarf, your name would be Heran
      and if you were an Orc, your name would be Vrong
      Your nearest Tavern might be called The Dragon’s Hoarde
      and your sword would be called Dulalus

      Liked by 2 people

          1. If you were a Hobbit, your name would be Raelonna Broadbeam
            and if you were a (female) Man, your name would be Haessi
            and if you were an Elf, your name would be Gidë
            and if you were a Dwarf, your name would be Ysaenoic
            and if you were an Orc, your name would be Pridish
            Your nearest Tavern might be called The Ent Tent
            and your sword would be called Althais

            :-D Cool!

            Liked by 1 person

    2. Hahaha oh beeps, fear not, the only time I ever take the high road, it’s either it’s either pompous outrage, or I’m trying to serve my own purpose. In this case, I just didn’t want to go near the twat. Apparently the bf got v drunk at the party, I heard some cheerful bellowing when they got back, he was calling my dog, who just stood and did her best bass growl.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Rofl me too. Do a Google search for hikikomori, but ignore the “young adult” part of the equation, because they’re seeing it in ages up to 60 now. It doesn’t apply in the West, but it’s interesting.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I read the Wikipedia def about self isolating. It did not say anything about the mess and lack of ability to fix it. I will have to go beyond wikipedia….it is often lame anyway.

        I think there is some kind of catch 22 effect that happens…at least in my brain….once I think of a solution there is something that counters is…..there is one big thing that seems to be at the heart of mine….I could write it out but I would do it on the bipolar blog because I specifically set that blog up to write about more personal brain issues….I have been neglecting….or running away from…..writing about personal things and mental pain…..Maybe later I will write in there.

        I got paranoid….or I was correct about someone cyber stalking me….right at this moment I can see rational evidence that someone was stalking me…but as far as I can tell it was my ex and his proxies and I believe they have lost interest in me now… has been a few months…..So we will see
        Actually maybe I will close that blog to public and make it password or invite or however that works….then I would not worry about the cyber stalking…because I cannot write about things that could be used against me that way

        Liked by 1 person

          1. It is interesting. Depression and self isolation are seen differently by different cultures but always are misunderstood by the mainstream in the culture.

            I think that people compartmentalize health. There is a lack of understanding of the whole person and health as having to do with the entire person.

            Ancient chinese medicine had the idea of the body systems being interrelated and also related to emotional and mental health. Yet modern medicine sees that as ancient ideas that have been advanced past.

            Liked by 1 person

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