ewippermann's blog

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Bright Star

I want to get
older with you
read in
bed with you
every night
like tonight
we've got
time but
that bright star
looking through
our dark window
the reflection
more beautiful
than this what
happens when
the water's too
tired to clean
our human shores
the air too
thick to see
stars caught in
fall trees'
capillaries
choking
well I'll be
listening
to your
tender breath 
I'll be more
steadfast than
that nightlight 
sleep sound to
your soft fall
and swell
dreaming of 
waking with
you of
waking
with you. 

 

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Poem for Our Youth

We're old
enough to know
we're young,
this winter's snow
shining far as
we can see
which isn't far
but sure is
beautiful.
Nothing is
as pure as this 
and it isn't.
However we walk
soft this solstice 
through our mother's
bare forests
whiter than our
mind before dreams.  
The sky darkens
early and our
parents sleep.
I hold your
hand and
we go bravely
into that
sweetness. 

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Waking

up with the wide
end of an August morning
you turned into the

warm sheet of sun
brushing your cheek --

whatever god is

I found it in your 
flushed breath when with
a close-eyed smile you

folded me into your sleep
and I fell deep in the
glow of your collarbone

a ridge of yellow 
rustling birch a susserous 
that murmured dream

in the amber below
the canopy of your hair --

god it was there.

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venedig, 1986

(Venedig, Gerhard RIchter 1986)


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Delhi

Look at us hiding on the roofs!

Atop hotels and restaurants lining
the square looking at
each other's blanched faces 
looking at
the street
below: 

souped crowds 
rickshaws and bikes
bellowing through the smoking
trash that I 
feel is all our fault

and the cows, just
eating it

beside the hawkers' 
cries, 

       a woman
in yellow, a glimmer
hair so neatly
plaited
is weaving in
the thick
throngs
and out
and out
finding no
one's eye 

especially
not mine
on the roof
watching.

 

 

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Metaphors We Live By: Conceptualizing Through Metaphor

Metaphor as a term is rarely taken out of the context of rhetorical and figurative language, and is overwhelmingly viewed as a product of language, an imaginative linguistic output. In Metaphors We live By, George Lakoff and Mark Johnson provide a rebuttal of this two-thousand-year-old fallacy, and argue that the use of metaphor is inherent in cognition and perception, and that the nature of our conceptual system is entirely metaphorical.

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Drugs: Sophisticated Placebos?

Pharmaceutical companies have been grappling with the placebo effect since the 1950s, when its surprising powers were discovered. As long as a patient is under the assumption that he or she is receiving a drug, a sugar pill or saline injection can alleviate illness and cure disease—sometimes, with close to the same level of efficacy as the actual drug. The science behind the placebo is shaky, and there are studies being conducted, but what seems to be of more concern to scientists is the placebo’s detriment to drug trials. Martin Enserink, in Science, discussed in his report on the placebo the recent failure of a new drug by Merck, MK-869, an antidepressant.

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A Philosophy to Match the Science

Sociologist Marvin Bressler said that the “dogged preservation of age-old religious belief systems ‘encourages decent men to tremble at the prospect of ‘inconvenient’ findings that may emerge in future scientific research. This unseemly anti-intellectualism is doubly degrading because it is probably unnecessary’” (Ellerman). The majority of religions or organized spiritual systems have had to fight against the findings of science, but the most Buddhists have embraced new research; the methods and modes of Buddhist practice are even shown to have a very firm neurological effect.

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A Ubiquitous Universal Grammar

Neurocognitive linguistics offers an approach to linguistics which focuses on identifying the cognitive processes by which the brain acquires and uses language, the operations that underlie the language function, and the physical structures in the brain that account for language. Language acquisition represents the immense difficulties linguists have in explaining and proving assertions from the scarce linguistic data available today. Every cognitively normal child is able to, and if exposed to other speakers definitely will, develop and learn a language natively. This is because language is not a learned skill, but an instinct.

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