Jacques Brel's Best Wishes for the New Year, 1968

Jacques Brel, 1929-1978 

 I wish you an endless list of dreams, and the furious desire to make some of them come true. 
I wish you to love what must be loved and to forget what must be forgotten.
 I wish you passions, I wish you silences. 
I wish you bird songs at dawn and chidren’s laughter. 
I wish you to respect people’s differences, because the value and merit of each often
 remains to be discovered. 
I wish you to refuse a stalemate, or the indifference and negative vertues of our time. 
And I wish you never to renounce the search, adventure, life, love, because life 
is an incredible adventure and no reasonable human being must renounce it 
without putting up a tough fight. 
I wish you most of all to be yourself, proud and happy, 
because happiness is our true destiny.

 Jacques Brel 
on January 1 1968 (Europe 1 radio)

Alphabetarion # Defense | Paul Nizan, 1931

Merikokeb Berhanu, Untitled XXXII, 2017

 “The time will come when the mind will no longer fear the things it believes in; 
then man will be ashamed to have remained on the defensive for so long.”

Paul Nizan, Aden Arabie, 1931


Queen of Greenwich Village | Clara Tice (1888-1973)

Nickolas Muray , Clara Tice with Her Dog, 1924

Clara Tice (22 May 1888 – 2 February 1973) was an American avant-garde illustrator and artist, 
who spent most of her life in New York City, United States. Because of her provocative art and 
public appearances, she was seen as representative of bohemian Greenwich Village and thus 
known as "The Queen of Greenwich Village."

Clara Tice, Luxurious Bed, 1915
Clara Tice, Cocktail Shaker, n.d.
Clara Tice, Pretty Sofa, n.d.
 Clara Tice, 1888-1973                                Clara Tice, n.d.    

Even more than her drawings of nudes, Tice’s adventurous wardrobe changed the conservative 
attitudes of her day.  Tice was among the first to advocate wearing short dresses and rolled-up
 stockings, although she warned anyone who was willing to listen that women were misguided 
in trying to attract men on the basis of their appearances alone.  
“Brains [and] the ability to do things.” she declared, “are the things that attract a man.” 
It may have been precisely these qualities that drew  her to the attention of Marcel Duchamp
whom she probably met in September 1916 at a fancy dress ball, where she won first prize
 and Duchamp, who served as one of the judges, was awarded the booby prize. 

Through Duchamp, Tice visited the home of Walter and Louise Arensberg, who opened their
 art-filled apartment on West 67th Street in Manhattan to nearly nightly gatherings of New 
York’s most celebrated and vanguard artists and writers.  Tice participated in the 1917 
Independents Exhibition, showing one of her dancing nudes and a drawing of a 
nude with cat.  

She also contributed a portrait of Edgard Varèse Composing to the second and last issue 
of The Blind Man, a journal organized by Duchamp and his friends to defend Fountain, 
the readymade urinal submitted to the exhibition by Duchamp (under the pseudonym R. Mutt)
 that was refused from display by the hanging committee.

 Clara Tice, n.d.                                                                                       Clara Tice, 1924
Clara Tice, Zebra mother and baby

During the 1920s, she illustrated about a dozen books with her erotic images, these are nowadays
 expensive collector's items. In 1940, her own book called ABC Dogs was published. It is a 
children's book in which each letter of the alphabet is represented by a dog breed whose 
name starts with the same letter. This publication sparked renewed interest in Tice and 
her art. She also worked on her memoirs, which she never completed.

Clara Tice, Black Puma, Hippopotamus, Dog and Her Pups, Giraffe and Elephant Frolicking
 Clara Tice, n.d.    
Clara Tice and her dog, 1916                 Clara Tice in medieval costume and riding a horse, 1916

Alphabetarion # Notes | Georges Simenon, 1942

Harry Brockway, detective Maigret

“Maigret never took notes. If he had a propelling pencil in his hand 
and a paper in front of him, it was only to make doodles that had 
no connection with the case.”

Georges Simenon, The Judge's House, 1942

Stereosc2pe + Christmas tree | London, 1938-2021

Admiring the Christmas tree in St. Paul's Cathedral, London, 1938                                                      Liliane Lijn - Temenos, London, 2021

Love Letters | Ernest Hemingway to Marlene Dietrich, 1950-1955

Ernest Hemingway and Marlene Dietrich

‘I can’t say how every time I ever put my arms around you, I felt that I was home.
 Nor too many things. But we were always cheerful and jokers together.’  

Ernest Hemingway to Marlene Dietrich, 1951

Marlene Dietrich & Ernest Hemingway, 1938

"Dearest Marlene:
 I always love you and admire you and I have all sorts of mixed up feelings about you […]  
please know that I love you always and forget you sometimes as I forget my heart beats. 
But it beats always.”

Ernest Hemingway to Marlene Dietrich, Aug. 12, 1952

The novelist and the femme fatale met on a French passenger liner in 1934. Hemingway
 was returning from an African safari with his second wife. Dietrich was traveling back 
to Hollywood after visiting relatives in Nazi Germany on one of her last trips home.

“Marlene Dietrich told the story later of how they actually met,” says Sandra Spanier, 
the editor of the "Letters of Ernest Hemingway." 

“[Dietrich] came into the dining room of the ship, and asked to join a group of people.
 And when they stood up, she realized there were 12 people at the table and she would
 make 13. And so she started to excuse herself. That’s when Ernest Hemingway appeared.
 He said he didn’t mean to intrude but he’d be glad to be the fourteenth person at the table.”

Dietrich and Hemingway went on to have an intense, flirty correspondence until the author 
killed himself in 1961, though they reputedly never slept together. Spanier describes their 
love as “platonic.”

“They claimed the timing was never right for the two of them to get together, 
but they were very intimate friends,” she says.

Spanier says they talked about their families, their work and their feelings about life and about 
each other. “They even had a fantasy scheme,” Spanier says, 
“that they would open a nightclub together one day. She would be the singer,
 and he would be the bouncer.”

Hemingway imagines the nightclub act in one of his racier letters to the actress, dated Aug. 28, 1955.

Ernest Hemingway to Marlene Dietrich, Aug. 12, 1952 letter 

Hemingway's letters to Dietrich are affectionate and playful. He signs his letters “Papa” and 
refers to her as “my little Kraut” or “daughter.” Spanier says Hemingway referred to
 most younger women that way.

Spanier believes Hemingway and Dietrich bonded over their experiences in World War II. 
Hemingway was a war correspondent and Dietrich entertained the troops in USO shows. 
“They both felt the war very intensely. And after the war, they had this feeling that 
they had been through something together and they were both tough people.”

For example, in a letter from June 27, 1950, Hemingway tells Dietrich:
 “We indestructibles should keep good contact. I am an old indestructible 
and you are a young one. But we know different from the others.”

He goes on to say, 
“Toi et moi have lived through about as bad times as there ever were. I don't mean just 
wars. Wars are Spinach. Life in general is the tough part. In war all you have to do is not 
worry and know how to read a map and co-ordinates.”

During the 1940s, Spanier says Dietrich and Hemingway would hang out at the Ritz hotel
 in Paris, after Hemingway had famously “liberated” the bar with the Allied troops. Once, 
at the Ritz, Hemingway gave Dietrich a poem he had written about death. “During the war,” 
Spanier says,
 “[Hemingway] attached himself to an infantry unit where 67 men had died in a 
24-hour period. He was heartbroken and wrote a long poem about that. And he 
asked Marlene Dietrich to read this poem in the Ritz bar and reportedly everyone
 had tears in their eyes including her.”

Spanier says Hemingway and Dietrich’s relationship made perfect sense, in a way. 
“They were both strong personalities. They both had to contend with their own celebrity
 and carve out a private space. And I think they saw that in each other and respected 
that in each other.”

Dietrich’s daughter, Maria Riva, goes a step farther. In her biography, Riva writes, 
''For my mother, Hemingway was the dashing War Correspondent in the turned-up-collar
 raincoat; the Hunter, shotgun cocked, standing strong in the path of a charging rhino; the 
Lonely Philosopher of the bleeding hands clutching his fishing line. … Whoever he
 visualized himself being, she accepted and believed in,'' she continues. ''She, the
 infatuated fan to all his fantasies, adored him and was convinced that she was the 
best friend he ever had. He adored her for being intelligent as well as beautiful, 
basked in her effusive adulation with shy pride.''

Ernest Hemingway to Marlene Dietrich, Aug. 12, 1952 letter 

Dearest Kraut :

Thanks very much for the good long letter with the gen on what you found wrong. I don’t know
 anything about the theater but I don’t think it would occur to me, even, to have you introduced 
even to me with strains of La Vie En Rose. Poor peoples.

If I were staging it would probably have something novel like having you shot onto the stage, 
drunk, from a self-propelled minnenwerfer which would advance in from the street rolling 
over the customers. We would be playing “Land of Hope and Glory.” As you landed on the stage
 drunk and naked I would advance from the rear, or from your rear wearing evening clothes and 
would hurriedly strip off my evening clothes to cover you revealing the physique of Burt Lancaster
 Strongfort and announce that we were sorry that we did not know the lady was loaded. All this 
time the Thirty ton S/P/ Mortar would be bulldozing the customers as we break into the Abortion
 Scene from “Lakme.” This is a scene which is really Spine Tingling and I have just the spine for
 it. I play it with a Giant Rubber Whale called Captain Ahab and all the time we are working on 
you with pulmotors and raversed (sic) cleaners which blow my evening clothes off you. You are
 foaming at the mouth of course to show that we are really acting and we bottle the foam and sell
 it to any surviving customers. You are referred to in the contract as The Artist and I am just 
Captain Ahab. Fortunately I am crazed and I keep shouting “Fire One. Fire Two. Fire Three.” 
And don’t think we do not fire them. It is then that the Germ of the Mutiny is born in your 
disheveled brain.

But why should a great Artist-Captain like me invent so many for so few for only air-mail
 love on Sunday morning when I should be in church. Only for fun, I guess. Gentlemen, crank
 up your hearses.

Marlene, darling, I write stories but I have no grace for fucking them up for other mediums. It was
 hard enough for me to learn to write to be read by the human eye. I do not know how, nor do I 
care to know how to write to be read by parrots, monkeys, apes, baboons, nor actors.

I love you very much and I never wanted to get mixed in any business with you as I wrote you 
when this thing first was brought up. Neither of us has enough whore blood for that. Not but 
what I number many splendid whores amongst my best friends and certainly never, I hope, 
could be accused of anti-whoreism. Not only that but I was circumcised as a very early age.

Hope you have it good in California and Las Vegas. What I hear from the boys is that many
 people in La Vegas (sic) or three or four anyway of the mains are over-extended. This is very
 straightgen but everybody knows it if I know it although I have not told anyone what I’ve heard 
and don’t tell you. But watch all money ends. Some people would as soon have the publicity of 
making you look bad as of your expected and legitimate success. But that is the way everything
 is everywhere and no criticism of Nevada or anyone there. Cut this paragraph out of this letter 
and burn it if you want to keep the rest of the letter in case you thought any of it funny. I rely on 
you as a Kraut officer and gentlemen do this.

New Paragraph. I love you very much and wish you luck. Wish me some too. Book is on page 592.
 This week Thursday we start photography on fishing. Am in charge of fishing etc. and it is going 
to be difficult enough. With a bad back a little worse. The Artist is not here naturally. I only wrote
 the book but must do the work as well and have no stand-in. Up at 0450 knock off at I930. This 
goes on for I5 days.

I think you could say you and I have earned whatever dough the people let us keep.

So what. So Merdre. I love you as always.



Alphabetarion # Dot | Don DeLillo, 1997

Roy Lichtenstein

 “A photograph is a universe of dots. The grain, the halide, the little silver things clumped
 in the emulsion. Once you get inside a dot, you gain access to hidden information, you 
slide into the smallest event. This is what technology does. It peels back the shadows 
and redeems the dazed and rumbling past. It makes reality come true.”

 Don DeLillo, Underworld, 1997

Winter | Photos by Jacques Henri Lartigue, 1913 - 1925

Jacques Henri Lartigue, Storm at Nice, 1925
Jacques Henri Lartigue, Storm at Nice, 1925
Jacques Henri Lartigue, Chamonix, 1914
Jacques Henri Lartigue, Chamonix, 1914
Jacques Henri Lartigue, Ski jumping competition, St. Moritz,1913
Jacques Henri Lartigue,Saint M oritz, 1913
Jacques Henri Lartigue, Paris, 1916
Jacques Henri Lartigue, St Moritz, 1913
Jacques Henri Lartigue, Francis Pigueron, Bois de Boulogne, Paris,1916
Jacques Henri Lartigue, Chamonix, 1920
Jacques Henri Lartigue, St Moritz, 1913

Francis Pigueron, Chamonix,1918

“Photography to me is catching a moment 
which is passing, and which is true.”
 Jacques Henri Lartigue, 1894-1986


The Book & the Movie: The End of the Affair | Graham Greene, 1951 / Edward Dmytryk, 1955

Graham Greene, 1904-1991                                                           The End of the Affair, 1951 - first edition

“A story has no beginning or end: arbitrarily one chooses that moment of experience from 
which to look back or from which to look ahead.”

“The sense of unhappiness is so much easier to convey than that of happiness. In misery we seem
 aware of our own existence, even though it may be in the form of a monstrous egotism: this pain
 of mine is individual, this nerve that winces belongs to me and to no other. But happiness
 annihilates us: we lose our identity.”

Graham Greene, The End of the Affair, 1951

Edward Dmytryk, The End of the Affair, 1955

“It's a strange thing to discover and to believe that you are loved when you know that 
there is nothing in you for anybody but a parent or a God to love.”

“I had to touch you with my hands, I had to taste you with my tongue; 
one can't love and do nothing.”

“I have loved no part of the world like this and I have loved no women as I love you. 
You're my human Africa. I love your smell as I love these smells. I love your dark bush
 as I love the bush here, you change with the light as this place does, so that one all the
 time is loving something different and yet the same. I want to spill myself out into you
 as I want to die here.”

“When I tried to remember her voice saying, 'Don't worry,' I found I had no memory for
 sounds. I couldn't imitate her voice. I couldn't even caricature it: when I tried to remember
 it, it was anonymous - just any woman's voice.
The process of forgetting her had set in. We should keep gramophone records
 as we keep photographs.”

Graham Greene, The End of the Affair, 1951

Edward Dmytryk, The End of the Affair, 1955

“Insecurity is the worst sense that lovers feel; sometimes the most humdrum desireless
 marriage seems better. Insecurity twists meanings and poisons trust.”

“Yesterday I went home with him and we did the usual things. I haven't the nerve to put them
 down, but I'd like to, because now when I'm writing it's already tomorrow and I'm afraid of 
getting to the end of yesterday. As long as I go on writing, yesterday is today and
 we are still together”

“There are times when a lover longs to be also a father and a brother: 
he is jealous of the years he hasn't shared.”

“I had never known her before and I had never loved her so much. 
The more we know the more we love, I thought.”

Graham Greene, The End of the Affair, 1951

Edward Dmytryk, The End of the Affair, 1955

“I measured love by the extent of my jealousy.”

“You needn't be so scared. Love doesn't end. Just because we don't see each other...”

“We can love with our minds, but can we love only with our minds? Love extends itself all 
the time, so that we can love even with our senseless nails: we love even with our clothes,
 so that a sleeve can feel a sleeve.”

Edward Dmytryk, The End of the Affair, 1955

“I became aware that our love was doomed; love had turned into a love affair with a beginning 
and an end. I could name the very moment when it had begun, and one day I knew I should 
be able to name the final hour. When she left the house I couldn't settle to work. I would 
reconstruct what we had said to each other; I would fan myself into anger or remorse. 
And all the time I knew I was forcing the pace. I was pushing, pushing the only thing I loved 
out of my life. As long as I could make believe that love lasted I was happy; I think I was even
 good to live with, and so love did last. But if love had to die, I wanted it to die quickly. It was
 as though our love were a small creature caught in a trap and bleeding to death; I had to shut 
my eyes and wring its neck.”

“Eternity is said not to be an extension of time but an absence of time.”

Edward Dmytryk, The End of the Affair, 1955

“Sometimes I get tired of trying to convince him that I love him and shall love him for ever. 
He pounces on my words like a barrister and twists them. I know he is afraid of that desert 
which would be around him if our love were to end, but he can’t realize that I feel exactly
 the same. What he says aloud, I say to myself silently and write it here.”

“I’m not at peace anymore. I just want him like I used to in the old days. I want to be eating 
sandwiches with him. I want to be drinking with him in a bar. I’m tired and I don’t want 
anymore pain. I want Maurice. I want ordinary corrupt human love. Dear God, you know 
I want to want Your pain, but I don’t want it now. Take it away for a while and give it me 
another time.”

Graham Greene, The End of the Affair, 1951

Deborah Kerr -  The End of the Affair, 1955

“I want men to admire me, but that's a trick you learn at school--a movement of the eyes, 
a tone of voice, a touch of the hand on the shoulder or the head. If they think you admire 
them, they will admire you because of your good taste, and when they admire you, you 
have an illusion for a moment that there's something to admire.”

“Indifference and pride look very much alike, and he probably thought I was proud.”

“As long as one suffers one lives.”

“So much in writing depends on the superficiality of one's days. One may be preoccupied
 with shopping and income tax returns and chance conversations, but the stream of the 
unconscious continues to flow undisturbed, solving problems, planning ahead: one sits down
 sterile and dispirited at the desk, and suddenly the words come as though from the air: the
 situations that seemed blocked in a hopeless impasse move forward: the work has been done 
while one slept or shopped or talked with friends.”

Graham Greene, The End of the Affair, 1951

The End of the Affair, 1955

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Writers: Graham Greene(novel) / Lenore J. Coffee (screenplay)
Cinematography: Wilkie Cooper
Stars: Deborah Kerr, Van Johnson, John Mills


Alphabetarion # Rich | Leo Perutz, 1953

Baccarat, blue opaline, ovoid covered Bowl, mid-19th century 

 “ They say he’s so rich that he 
spreads sugar on his honey.”

 Leo Perutz, By Night Under the Stone Bridge, 1953

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