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Most humans have two brain hemispheres. A dominant function of the right hemisphere is the creation of art. Below is the result of my right hemisphere's activity, assuming that I have a brain at all, as I've never seen it.

All the drawings are mine; the poems and writings are attributed to the respective authors.

Click on the images to enlarge.

Thine evil deeds are writ in gore,
Nor written thus in vain ---
Thy triumphs tell of fame no more,
Or deepen every stain:
If thou hadst died as honour dies,
Some new Napoleon might arise,
To shame the world again ---
But who would soar the solar height,
To set in such a starless night?

Weigh'd in the balance, hero dust
Is vile as vulgar clay;
Thy scales, Mortality! are just
To all that pass away:
But yet methought the living great
Some higher sparks should animate,
To dazzle and dismay:
Nor deem'd Contempt could thus make mirth
Of these, the Conquerors of the earth.
Lord Byron, Ode to Napoleon Buonaparte

Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer. Go some distance away because then the work appears smaller and more of it can be taken in at a glance and a lack of harmony and proportion is more readily seen.
Leonardo da Vinci

Veni, vidi, vici.
Gaius Julius Caesar

As we read the newspapers, we learn we are existing right now in a state of war. The individual wars may not be large and they are being fought far from here, but there is really only one war, that between those who would like the future to be, in the words of George Orwell, a boot grinding forever into a human face, and those who would like it to be a state of something we still dream of as freedom.
Margaret Atwood, The Writer's Responsibility (1981 essay)

Drawing Variations...

Mona Lisa, Mona Lisa
Men have named you
You're so like the lady with the mystic smile
Is it only cause you're lonely
They have blamed you
For that Mona Lisa strangeness in your smile

Do you smile to tempt a lover, Mona Lisa
Or is this your way to hide a broken heart
Many dreams have been brought to your doorstep
They just lie there, and they die there
Are you warm, are you real, Mona Lisa
Or just a cold and lonely, lovely work of art
Nat King Cole

Close ups of the drawing...

The marble not yet carved can hold the form of every thought the greatest artist has.
Michelangelo Buonarroti

Close ups of the drawing...

Portrait: The likeness of a person, painted, drawn, or engraved; commonly, a representation of the human face painted from real life.

"In portraits, the grace, and, we may add, the likeness, consists more in the general air than in the exact similitude of every feature.

Sir J. Reynolds

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed."

Albert Eistein

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
" 'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door;
Only this, and nothing more."

Ah, distinctly I remember, it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow, sorrow for the lost Lenore,.
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore,
Nameless here forevermore.


Edgar Alan Poe, The Raven

"You must not think you are committing suicide by adhering to nature and trying to picture it with exactness. In the beginning you must subject yourself to the influence of nature. After that you can turn back, motivate nature and perhaps make it more beautiful. But you must be able to walk firmly on the ground before you start tight-rope walking."

"I have always sought to be understood and, while I was taken to task by critics or colleagues, I thought they were right, assuming I had not been clear enough to be understood. This assumption allowed me to work my whole life without hatred and even without bitterness toward criticism, regardless of its source. I counted solely on the clarity of expression of my work to gain my ends. Hatred, rancor, and the spirit of vengeance are useless baggage to the artist. His road is difficult enough for him to cleanse his soul of everything which could make it more so."

"What I dream of is an art of balance, of purity and serenity devoid of troubling or depressing subject matter - a soothing, calming influence on the mind, rather like a good armchair which provides relaxation from physical fatigue."

Henri Matisse, talking about his art.

Poema I

Cuerpo de mujer, blancas colinas,muslos blancos, te pareces al mundo en tu actitud de entrega. Mi cuerpo de labriego salvaje te socava y hace saltar el hijo del fondo de la tierra.

Fui solo como un túnel. De mí huían los pájaros y en mí la noche entraba su invasión poderosa. Para sobrevivirme te forjé como un arma, como una flecha en mi arco, como una piedra en mi honda.

Pero cae la hora de la venganza, y te amo. Cuerpo de piel, de musgo, de leche ávida y firme. Ah los vasos del pecho! Ah los ojos de ausencia! Ah las rosas del pubis! Ah tu voz lenta y triste!

Cuerpo de mujer mía, persistiré en tu gracia. Mi sed, mi ansia sin límite, mi camino indeciso! Oscuros cauces donde la sed eterna sigue, y la fatiga sigue, y el dolor infinito.

Pablo Neruda, 20 Poemas de Amor y Una Cancion Desesperada


The voice that would reach you, Hunter, must speak in Biblical tones, or in the poetry of Walt Whitman. You are primitive and modern, simple and complex; you are one part George Washington and one part Nimrod. You are the United States, future invader of our naive America with its Indian blood, an America that still prays to Christ and still speaks Spanish.

You are strong, proud model of your race; you are cultured and able; you oppose Tolstoy. You are an Alexander-Nebuchadnezzar, breaking horses and murdering tigers. (You are a Professor of Energy, as current lunatics say).

You think that life is a fire, that progress is an irruption, that the future is wherever your bullet strikes. No.

The United States is grand and powerful. Whenever it trembles, a profound shudder runs down the enormous backbone of the Andes. If it shouts, the sound is like the roar of a lion. And Hugo said to Grant: "The stars are yours." (The dawning sun of the Argentine barely shines; the star of Chile is rising..) A wealthy country, joining the cult of Mammon to the cult of Hercules; while Liberty, lighting the path to easy conquest, raises her torch in New York.

But our own America, which has had poets since the ancient times of Nezahualcóyolt; which preserved the footprint of great Bacchus, and learned the Panic alphabet once, and consulted the stars; which also knew Atlantic (whose name comes ringing down to us in Plato) and has lived, since the earliest moments of its life, in light, in fire, in fragrance, and in love-- the America of Moctezuma and Atahualpa, the aromatic America of Columbus, Catholic America, Spanish America, the America where noble Cuauthémoc said: "I am not in a bed of roses"--our America, trembling with hurricanes, trembling with Love: O men with Saxon eyes and barbarous souls, our America lives. And dreams. And loves. And it is the daughter of the Sun. Be careful. Long live Spanish America! A thousand cubs of the Spanish lion are roaming free. Roosevelt, you must become, by God's own will, the deadly Rifleman and the dreadful Hunter before you can clutch us in your iron claws.

And though you have everything, you are lacking one thing: God!

Ruben Dario

Poema VI

Te recuerdo como eras en el último otoño. Eras la boina gris y el corazón en calma. En tus ojos peleaban las llamas del crepúsculo. Y las hojas caían en el agua de tu alma.

Apegada a mis brazos como una enredadera, las hojas recogían tu voz lenta y en calma. Hoguera de estupor en que mi sed ardía. Dulce jacinto azul torcido sobre mi alma.

Siento viajar tus ojos y es distante el otoño: boina gris, voz de pájaro y corazón de casa hacia donde emigraban mis profundos anhelos y caían mis besos alegres como brasas.

Cielo desde un navío. Campo desde los cerros. Tu recuerdo es de luz, de humo, de estanque en calma! Más allá de tus ojos ardían los crepúsculos. Hojas secas de otoño giraban en tu alma.

Pablo Neruda, 20 Poemas de Amor y Una Cancion Desesperada



IN clouds descending, in midnight sleep, of many a face in battle,
Of the look at first of the mortally wounded, (of that indescribable look,)
Of the dead on their backs with arms extended wide-
I dream, I dream, I dream.


Of scenes of nature, the fields and the mountains,
Of the skies so beauteous after a storm, and at night the moon so unearthly bright,
Shining sweetly, shining down, where we dig the trenches and gather the heaps-
I dream, I dream, I dream.


Long have they passed, long lapsed-faces, and trenches, and fields:
Long through the carnage I moved with a callous composure, or away from the fallen
Onward I sped at the time. But now of their faces and forms at night,
I dream, I dream, I dream.

Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass


To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to, 'tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep;
To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub;
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause: there's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life;
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely,
The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office and the spurns
That patient merit of the unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscover'd country from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all;
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprises of great pith and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry,
And lose the name of action.--Soft you now!
The fair Ophelia! Nymph, in thy orisons
Be all my sins remember'd.

William Shakespeare, Hamlet

Chapter 18: Should a Prince Remain True to his Word?

Everyone understands how praiseworthy it is for a prince to remain true to his word and to live with complete integrity without any scheming. However, we've seen through experience how many princes in our time have achieved great things who have little cared about keeping their word and have shrewdly known the skill of tricking the minds of men; these princes have overcome those whose actions were founded on honesty and integrity.

It should be understood that there are two types of fighting: one with laws and the other with force. The first is most suitable for men, the second is most suitable for beasts, but it often happens that the first is not enough, which requires that we take recourse to the second. Therefore, it is necessary for a prince to know how to act both as a man and as a beast. This was signified allegorically to princes by the ancient writers: they wrote that Achilles and many other ancient princes were given to be raised and tutored by the centaur Chiron, who took custody of them and disciplined them. This can only mean, this trainer who was half beast and half man, that a prince needs to know how to use either one or the other nature, and the one without the other will never last.

Niccolo Machiavelli, The Prince

© Jose Sandoval 2004-2009