Month: May 2019

May 31, 2019

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Listen to me in silence (Isaiah 41.1). 8.00 am: A communion. We suffer most when unable to comprehend the purpose of either our own or other people’s distress. Apparently meaningless affliction or loss is so hard to bear. Thus, we should never cease to ask: ‘Why?’ While an answer may not be immediately forthcoming, it may yet be discoverable in…
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May 30, 2019

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9.00 am: The weather was peculiarly apposite: sullen-grey and indifferent to suffering – like on the day after my paternal grandmother died. And life goes on in a stupid way, still, thereafter. I turned DOC files into PDF files, reduced 100% to 30%, aggregated marks, and entered them on tables. There was an end to it in sight, however. 11.00…
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May 29, 2019

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How is the gold become dim (Lamentations 4.1). 6.30 am: I awoke, showered, breakfasted, and dispatched various domestic jobs before settling to the morning’s communion. I addressed a necessary corrective. In the maelstrom of daily stresses and strains, it’s easy to drift from these moorings. The psalmist presents not just a series of divine commendations, but the testimony of a…
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May 28, 2019

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7.00 am: Showered. 7.45 am: Following breakfast, I pressed on (quite literally) with what remained of the ironing. (Socks and other delicates would be coupled and sorted at the close of the evening.) Ironing can be a contemplative activity. As I flattened the terrain of tea towels, t-shirts, and trousers, my mind unfolded ideas and wistful hopes, and smoothed-over problems…
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May 27, 2019

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Yesterday afternoon was absorbed by ironing. I’ve been a believer in this purgatorial chore ever since a female college friend, in the early 1980s, remarked to me that I looked as though I slept in my shirts. 7.15 am: Breakfast, and a period of reflection on some of the emotional undercurrents that’ve flowed through my life during the past years.…
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May 25, 2019

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I love tomorrow (Conrad Roberts, ‘Inamorata’). 7.30 am: I’m a weak and inconstant man. But I have it; it doesn’t have me. (‘Keep telling yourself that, buddy!’, my ‘muse’ whispered.): 8.15 am: A little house work. 8.30 pm: A little email catch-up. Bank Holiday weekends don’t stem the flow of incoming mail. 9.00 am: On, then, with postgraduate marking. One…
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May 23, 2019

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8.00 am: A communion. ‘The Lord upholds all who are falling, and raises up all who are bowed down’ (Psalm 145.14–16). There’re times when either falling or bending under the weight of some heavy burden seem to be our prevailing condition. 8.30 pm: Off to School for the second and last day of third-year painting assessments. Dr Forster and I haven’t begun…
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May 22, 2019

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Leave me now.Leave me nowHope is gone,All my time’s run out.(Moby, ‘Hope is Gone’) 5.15 am: I awoke; my mind racing. Since it was in gear, I returned to my desk and pushed on with those feedback reports that I’d not completed yesterday evening. 7.00 am: Showered: 8.00 am: A phone call from the family on the day of my…
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May 21, 2019

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6.00 am: I awoke, and failed to return to sleep: But who could’ve resisted such a lovely early-summer day. ‘Up, boy!’: 6.15 am: Showered. 7.45 am: A communion. 8.30 pm: Today began my assessment of the undergraduate exhibition and postgraduate show. Henceforth, what was art is now, also, the assessable response to the aims and objectives of the modules. This…
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May 20, 2019

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Frail as summer’s flower we flourish,Blows the wind and it is gone.(Henry Francis Lyte, ‘Praise, My Soul, The King of Heaven’ (1834)) Over the weekend, my mother-in-law passed away after a short illness. She was 89 years of age, and the best mother-in-law anyone could have wished for. Even in her middle and late years, she was still a young…
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