The Sensual World of Polish Poet Anna Świrszczyńska

Anna Świrszczyńska, also known as Anna Swir wrote poems in direct, evocative language that spoke passionately and directly to the heart. She wrote affectionately about the female body, love, pain, loneliness, terror, war, childbirth, child-rearing and the passing of time. She focused a lot on the flesh – its elasticity and potential while young, alongContinue reading “The Sensual World of Polish Poet Anna Świrszczyńska”

Eight words in Polish that have no English equivalent

Around ten years ago now I tasked myself with learning Polish. Not for shits and giggles or just to challenge myself but for the very practical reason of being able to communicate with my partner’s family who live in Poland. It was a hard slog and some even consider Polish to be the hardest ofContinue reading “Eight words in Polish that have no English equivalent”

Book Review: The Book of Life by Alesha Sivratha

Alesha Sivartha’s enigmatic 1898 book The Book of Life: The Spiritual and Physical Constitution of Man, combines mysticism, sociology, theosophy, art and culture into a unique philosophy. Other than the obscure and bewildering ideas in this book, the illustrations and diagrams of the human body, mind and spirit are otherworldly and amazing. Sivartha was a manContinue reading “Book Review: The Book of Life by Alesha Sivratha”

Book Review: The Signature of All Things

Genre: Historic fiction Publisher: Penguin Random House Rating: 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 *No spoilers Elizabeth Gilbert is best known for her world-wide best-selling autobiography Eat Pray Love which was about her own journey of self-discovery, spirituality and travel. This girl’s own adventure was music to the ears of many young women who were already embarkingContinue reading “Book Review: The Signature of All Things”

Ancient word of the day: Algorithm

The ancient Muslim empire in the city of Baghdad was the birthplace of the word (and the concept of the) algorithm. In the year 820 AD, a Persian genius named Muhammed ibn Musa al-Khwarizmi created the concept of the algorithm and algebra in an ancient book called Kitab al-Jebr. The book Kitab al-Jebr (later latinisedContinue reading “Ancient word of the day: Algorithm”

My All Time Favourite Top-Ten Non-Fiction History Books

Here’s a collection of some of the non-fiction I have reviewed in the past, ranked as a top ten. The subject matter and time periods vary, but I really like the history of medicine, psychology, symbolism, medieval history, animals and more. 1. The Book of Symbols by the Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism (ARAS)Continue reading “My All Time Favourite Top-Ten Non-Fiction History Books”

People make things to express their need (or fear) of connection

“It seems funny to think that healing or coming to terms with loneliness and loss, or with the damage accrued in scenes of closeness, the inevitable wounds that occur whenever people become entangled with one another, might take place by means of objects. It seems funny, and yet the more I thought about it theContinue reading “People make things to express their need (or fear) of connection”

Book Review: One Good Turn by Kate Atkinson

Genre: Fiction, Thriller, Mystery. Rating: ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ Publisher: Black Swan Publishing *No spoilers. Set in Edinburgh during the height of the Edinburgh Festival, this is a mystery where various characters are intertwined and nested together in a complex and entertaining way. It begins with a road-rage incident that is witnessed in the CowContinue reading “Book Review: One Good Turn by Kate Atkinson”

Ancient word of the day: Uncanny

The ancient word of the day is Uncanny. This is the feeling of encountering a landscape, person or object that is both frightening and unsettlingly dissonant. Freud coined a similar word for this “unheimlich”— which is to say, eerie and both homely and unhomely. I’m sure you would be able to recall some uncanny encounters,Continue reading “Ancient word of the day: Uncanny”

Book Review: Two Sisters: Unsolicited Advice to my Daughters by Małgorzata ‘Googie’ McCabe

A beautiful compendium of universal wisdom that’s simple, wise, soulful and timeless. I fell in love with this book as soon as I saw it. The illustrations and words are by my wise and kind friend Googie McCabe who wrote this book for her two beloved daughters, as a way of healing and dealing withContinue reading “Book Review: Two Sisters: Unsolicited Advice to my Daughters by Małgorzata ‘Googie’ McCabe”