31 January 2011

A Philosophy Poetry Challenge -With great prizes!

I've decided that enough is enough: there are a number of intellectual pursuits that I simply can't get my head around: calculus and pholosophy are two that spring to mind imediately. While 'm sure that I can overcome my calculus block on my own I fear that there is no chance that I will ever be able to sit down and read the works of Schopenhauer, Hegel, Nietzsche or Lacan...

Gems of knowledge such as this by Lacan are a mystery to me: A geometry implies the heterogeneity of locus, namely that there is a locus of the Other. Regarding this locus of the Other, of one sex as Other, as absolute Other, what does the most recent development in topology allow us to posit?

Unless I can get my head around this I fear that the likes of Slavoj Zizek and Jacques Derrida will simply remain tedious pricks with no more relevance to the world than Jordan.

I therefore need help to overcome this block. Readers are therefore asked to explain philosophical concepts in verse form. All forms of verse are acceptable but the shorter the poem, the better - Haikus are particularly welcome!

There will of course be prizes for the best poems. The winner will receive a copy of the collected novels of Flann O'Brien. Second prize is the Third Policeman on audio book (read by the actor who played Bishop Brennan in Father Ted!).. Also up for grabs are three copies of the Poor Mouth (The novel that gave this blog its name)

All you need do is leave your poem as a comment... or poems, - you can enter as often as you like! . Closing date is 31 January

310 comments:

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Anonymous said...

So Knatolee, you have obviously been lying in wait just to swoop when you saw the chance to get the 200th, and then with two comments to allow for any deletion by Jams. You are a crafty chick, but I'll get the 300th, maybe...

McCrapigall said...

Oh lookee see
and michty me
on 200 and more
ye have tae click tae move oer'
to a new page o' comments
and the new crap that foments
in minds that are frayed
by this comments parade.
Unless Jams flicks a settin'
for 300 comments us gettin'
and then we'd see all
wi nae clickin at all.

jams o donnell said...

More great entries. Calum I am glad you are posting for Claude. I got a message from her saying that she has been in hospital. Here's wishing her a speedy recovery

jams o donnell said...

And congratulations and thanks for making this to over 200 posts!

Ole Phat Stu said...

Who'd have thought
that philosophy and poetry
could cause 200 comments :-)
Indeed, who'd have thought?

Ole Phat Stu said...

Marilyn Chambers died?
She gave us all a hard time,
But it's still too soon :-(

jams o donnell said...

It is a pleasant surpise Stu!

Haha Stu! Did you look behind the Green Door?

McClaudeigall and McCrapigall said...

Calum posting for Claude?

Mistaken identity we'd say.

Get better soon Claude,
your wisdom is missed,
relax with fine wine,
but don't get too pissed.

(linguistic note. In UK pissed means drunk. We are told that in US it means annoyed. Not sure about Canada, but we use it in UK sense). Take care Claude.

jams o donnell said...

Oops sorry H!

Here;s wishing Claude a speedy recovery

CalumCarr said...

He writes so much I start to wonder
Why HI steals another's thunder
My long long line he had to plunder
God! He'll pay for this hellish blunder

Watch, watch, watch your back
Stop looking once and I'll attack
I'll hit your head a hammer's crack
You tweaked my poem, you took the flak

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Ach Calum, that would be so much better as plain prose, like this:

He writes so much I start to wonder why HI steals another's thunder. My long long line he had to plunder. God! He'll pay for this hellish blunder. Watch, watch, watch your back. Stop looking once and I'll attack. I'll hit your head a hammer's crack. You tweaked my poem, you took the flak, watch out HI, 'cos Calum's back!

Mcpishigall said...

If philosophy
means love of wisdom,
phobosophy must mean the opposite,
and sophistry, fallacious reasoning,
if used instead
would seem quite apposite.

jams o donnell said...

Go on Fight, FIGHT!

Anonymous said...

Poet-baiting is so unpleasant Jams, never mind philosopher-baiting. Your twisted mind would like to see Calum and me in a cage together spouting rubbishy rhymes at one another until one cried out in beaten and humiliated despair: "Ok, I give in, well done old chap, let's shake hands on that", wouldn't you? A degrading primitive and barbaric ritual, thank goodness it's illegal. Or are you going to set it up in a dingy dockland warehouse somewhere with big money changing hands? You'd even take photographs and peddle them online, wouldn't you? Sick.

McBilgeigall (also of "The Scottish School") said...

H.I. and Calum in a fight to the end
One will not break
and the other will not bend
Calum screams "dinae"
H. sqeals "don't"
But they keep spouting garbage
from their limitless font
The old men circle
screaming rhyme at bleeding ears
when Jams sets up a competition
it can only end in tears.
But as they fight away
Jams breaks off to say,
well done to all the winners
These fools are mere beginners.

jams o donnell said...

H I'll have you and Calum in the cage for the Ode-arama Rumble at the O2 Arena. Two go in and one comes out!

There will be laughs, there will be tears but one and only one will be crowned King of the Rumble!

Anonymous said...

Bring it on. Can we wear our kilts? Do we have to be bare chested and oiled? Can we have a beer between rounds?

Calum will probably say "Can we just not bother?"

jams o donnell said...

Kilts and oiled torsos? I will be able to charge double for tickets. I can up the purse to a fish supper and and a tin of Irn Bru for the winner!

Anonymous said...

Fish supper and Irn Brew...? You do know how to get a real fight out of brawling Scots :)

Anonymous said...

Oops, Irn Bru (a disgraceful error :) Truth is I never touch the stuff, but don't tell on me or I'll be run out of town and over the border.

Anonymous said...

I'll kill for a fish supper though. The problem is, I rather fear Calum will too. In fact, I rather fear Calum. But don't let him know.

jams o donnell said...

Haha the Irn Bru revelation goes into my blackmail file!
Tl you what You can have a nip of Talisker instead

Ole Phat Stu said...

Hae a braw Burns Nicht the nicht Jams.

jams o donnell said...

I'll do my best Stu!

Löst Jimmy said...

I see your blogpost date reads 31 January 2011, you've not gone and indulged in moderate time travel...if you can go back the way please share the knowledge.

As to a poem...

Cthulhu appeared from within cave
Its tentacles grabbed the campers
A poor victim got out the word save
Just before he pissed his pampers

er, sorry that's rubbish...

...i'll get my coat

Jams' Great Clone-son said...

If you scroll back far enough Jimmy you'll find Jams answered your comment in Summer 2009. He can do time travel, but it means he gets everything very mixed up

jams o donnell said...

Haha a fine effort Jimmy. The post is dated 31 January to keep it on the top of the blog. Well that's the official reason. H as usual tells the real and awful truth!

Great Clone-son said...

H tells the truth? H??

I am hurt now. He's not even family (unless you go back to the slime moulds).

By the way, you have forgotten my 2099 birthday present, but as usual I expect I'll get it at the big party in 1925.

jams o donnell said...

Fear not. I have got you the Dibromium reticlator from 3445. I will give it to you at the 1368 Birthday bash. Is that okay?

Great Clone-son said...

It arrived 5 minutes ago Great Clonefather. You must be getting mixed up again. And.... you know what the word verification is? It is "cutjams". Hmmm, with the reticlator? Where shall I cut?

jams o donnell said...

Go with your heart great clone son!

Lennie Late said...

Phil O'Sophie
the mixed up Irishman
walked like a woman
but dressed like a man
People would ask him
what Phil O'Sophie means
He said 'I aint got a clue,
but it aint what it seems.

jams o donnell said...

An excellent entry Lennie. Phil is just as confused as the rest of us!

Knatolee said...

H.i., mostly I never realized that when there are over 200 comments, you have to click on the "oldest-older" or "newer-newest" doohickey down at the bottom right, in order to open up the comments window to reveal "oldest-older" or "newer-newest" comments!

And we have until Monday to make it to 300...

Knatolee said...

Oh Jams, I am sorry to hear Claude has been sick. I have her mailing address so I will send her a card!!

Knatolee said...

In Canada, we use "pissed" to mean drunk and "pissed off" to mean annoyed, although sometimes people will say "pissed" to mean annoyed, because we've got that bloody great big monstrosity of a country just south of us, constantly influencing our culture!

Knatolee said...

PPS (I''m catching up!) Kilts and oiled torsos sound great, but what I really want is to see Calum and H. i. engaged in a serious bout of Jell-o wrestling.

Tom Freeman said...

Hi Jams, here’s a pair of limericks advocating and rejecting Cartesian mind-body dualism (1st-year undergrad stuff but that’s about all I can remember!):

A skeptical Frenchman did find
He couldn’t deny his own mind,
But his brain he could doubt
So he therefore ruled out
That the two things were of the same kind.

But Lois thought Clark was a clot,
While Superman surely was not;
So they differ, she’d claim,
And yet they’re the same –
So distinctness from thought can’t be got.

jams o donnell said...

Let's see if we can make it 300 Knat!

Pissed still means drunk here although your southern neighbour's cultural claws get everywhere!

Claude han an angioplasty. She sounds like she is drained but on the mend which is god news.

Jell-O wrestling? Ooh err Knat, I'll have tp charge treble for that one!

jams o donnell said...

Tom do not worry about them being sixth formish.. my own work barely makes nursery school! A fine effort o should I say efforts

Anonymous said...

A fine new entrant in Tom, I'd say.

And Knatolee, your jell-o wrestling fantasy is just sick... and if you really could view it I expect you'd actually be sick :). You'd probably be too busy laughing though, I suppose. Could it become a You-tube hit?

And Knatolee, again, you sound a tad pissed (I mean a bit pissed off) with your neighbours.

jams o donnell said...

With two hunks like you and Calum? You would be stars!

Anonymous said...

I am getting confused and may need to speak to my manager about the precise arrangements for this bout. Are me and Calum still meant to be screaming our poetry out at one another when wrestling in the Jell-o, and does that version also include the oiled torsos and kilts? I am up for the five star bout of poetry, oiled torsos, kilts, wrestling and Jell-o; but Calum has been very quiet recently. I think he's a scaredy pants (or scaredy no-pants if the kilts are to be worn traditionally).

Anonymous said...

And I'm beginning to think we should get the Monty Python team out of retirement to make this whole event and build up and sad sorry aftermath into a feature film. Any ideas for a good title? How could the necessary romantic touch be inserted? (Please no romance between me and Calum... "in the oily sweat of battle a bond was formed..." No please, nothing like that). So Titles? Oh, a first bid just came to me... "Hard Lard" (even captures the poetry, but others can do better, surely?).

jams o donnell said...

Oiled torsos and kilts while wrestling in Jello will up the purse to a large fish supper, a half bottle of Ben Dover, Slovenia's best selling paint thinner AND half a dozen lake balls. How does that grab you?

Hmm you had better be careful with a title like Hard Lard though H!

Anonymous said...

"Poetry in Commotion" then?

(word verification "tagox" Ha ha, Tag wrestling, but which one of us is the ox?")

Anonymuse said...

"Dim and Dimmer, who's the winner?"

bing said...

this is super cool!

haikus are a challenge indeed.. though i know this is a lame attempt i would be contributing, i share my first attempt in haiku some 6 years ago:

- Prelude to Lovemaking -

the dining table
a witness of your resolve
to make love tonight

- Further Prelude -

the space across
listens to the playfulness
the moment of love

- The Act -

the bed awaits, hushed
murmurs, sighs, cries of pleasure
after the prelude

- After the Act –

once again, the bed
watches both lovers, beaten
into a vortex…

i know it is not perfect. but this one is fun!

Anonymous said...

Now these are good Bing, and nobody has tackled the philosophy of love here - way too complicated for us :)

McGlumigall said...

Inspired by Bing's dinner table of love, I offer the dinner table of those (hopefully occasional) more awkward moments:

silence, but fork scrape
sideways looks and awkward gaze
a fight, or thaw awaits

Knatolee said...

H. i., I'm not sure I'd call that Jell-o thing my FANTASY! More like my evening comedy hour!!!

And yes, my southern neighbours, as a nations (I rather like many of the individuals!) do regularly piss me off!

Knatolee said...

Okay, here's what I want: Calum, H. insciens and Jams in a caged Jell-o wrestling match, and AS they are wresting, they must be screaming out philosophy haikus WHILE eating fine Canadian cheddar. Again, NOT my fantasy, but definitely my goal for a YouTube video!!!

Knatolee said...

And thanks for the update on Claude. I really hope to meet her in person the next time I'm in my hometown (which is her current town!)

jams o donnell said...

I am heartily glad that seeing Calum and H wrestling in Jello was not a fantasy... on the other hand their oiled and muscular torsos may turn a girl's head!

Alternatively it should be a huge YouTube hit!

jams o donnell said...

Bing Bravo, your haikus are superb. You have taken this challenge and produced something wonderful

McGlumigall.. such is life eh.. Perhaps this is our fate!

jams o donnell said...

Poetry in commotion.. I like it I will get the publicity going asap

Oh come on Anonymouse, What a way thing to call two such fine men!

Claude said...

Thank you all for your good wishes. I'm so pissed off with my inertia. I hope I can resume reading blogs and comments soon.

McClaudeigall said...

All Hail Queen Claude!
Her wisdom is back!
She looks and asks:
"Best you can do, is that?"
The plebs are quiet,
in awe of her grace,
but all are SO happy
to see her back in this place.

Claude said...

Alas!I'm not allowed to be pissed!

Anonymous said...

Knatolee: "WHILE eating fine Canadian cheddar."

Now that IS a weird touch.

Everything else sounds perfectly sensible.

I echo my fine colleague McClaudeigall, whom I know as if he were myself. Great to hear from you Claude. Sorry about calling you Claudia some way back in the comments. Identities can get confused in this blogging game sometimes.

McClaudeigall said...

Claude's been missed
but she can't get pissed
I hope she's fine
for just a little red wine
If that's too much
try mixed fruit tea
which really does taste
like wine to me.

(Word verification: "goodflog". Yes, I know I deserve it. Sorry. I'll try to be more sensible in future)

Claude said...

@ McClaudeigall - Merci!

I wish I could reply in kind
But slow and blurry is my mind.
Bonne nuit
Mon ami!

Claude said...

TWO HUNDRED AND SIXTY-FOUR!!!!

WOW! Jams...Going back to bed for another week...

McClaudeigall said...

Two hundred and sixty five noo Claude lassie. Is there nay end tae this crap?

When Claude gangs tae sleep
Are we gone until she peeps
Or there, all alang?

Knatolee said...

Yay, so good to see Claude back!

Francis Hunt said...

(with grateful acknowledgement to "Old Deuteronomy" by T.S. Eliot)

Epistemology


Epistemology’s been round a long time;
A discipline followed by many a mind.
It’s been pursued by Plato and Descartes and Quine,
Reformulated and often refined.
Epistemology’s questioned the soul
And more – I am tempted to say, everything;
For in asking just how we do know what we know
It resounds in our head with a colossal ring.
Je pense, donc je suis, or phenomenology,
Direct apprehension, or shadows on cave walls,
The learned philosophers croak: ‘Well, of all …
Things…Can it be…really!...No!...Yes!...
Ho! hi!
My mind’s eye!
My knowing’s uncertain, but I confess
I believe it is Epistemology!’

McBoozeigall said...

A thought provoking entry Francis. I'm more familiar with I-am-pissed-emology though. Hic.

McBoozeigall said...

Drink,
Think,
Drink
Thin?
Drink
Thi?
Drink
Th?
Drink
T?
Drink
?
Drink
?????

Francis Hunt said...

(One more inspired by Eliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats" - this time Macavity :-))

Ontology


Ontology’s a noble thing, the philosophy of being –
For it’s the study of essence, the science beyond seeing.
It’s the bafflement of Cambridge dons, and Wittgenstein’s despair:
For when the language’s analysed – Ontology’s not there!

Ontology, ontology, there’s nothing like ontology,
It dwells in metaphysical realms, refutes phenomenology.
It’s the joy of Martin Heidegger, makes Daniel Dennett stare,
For when the consciousness’s defined – Ontology’s not there!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
McBoozeigall said...

Ontology?
Shmology
Time to have
a holiday

Anonymous said...

Entropy -
it seems to say
whatever is here
will go away
whatever is hot
will soon grow cold
whatever is young
will soon be old

Anonymous said...

I removed that comment
cos I made an error
apologies for being
such a silly fella
I blame it on McBoozeigall's fumes
spreading through to my place
the more he consumes

Knatolee said...

More amazing entries since I last checked in! Nice work, lads.

Knatolee said...

We have but one day
to bring it to three hundred.
Can we? or Kant we?

jams o donnell said...

Claude! Welcome back I hope that you are one the mend. Not being able to get pissed can piss one off eh?

jams o donnell said...

Francis, Excellent stuff! I am beginning to wonder who to award prizes to.

McBoozeigall, sterling if alcohol soaked efforts
!

jams o donnell said...

H and Francis have kept up the momentum eh Knat?

This has been a resounding success!

McBoozeigall said...

If you can't
understand Kant
don't feel too glum
cos he can't understand thee,
as he's dead, you see?
says this drunken bum,
and thinkin' of what's to come,
we're all dead,
in the long run...
so pass the rum.

McCrapigall said...

Jams will need a month,
maybe broken by a rest,
to go through all the entries
and consider which are best.
Although perhaps not his intention
should he ponder an extension
for tho' the cup is nearly filled
should the flow of crap be stilled?
(Not that all of it is crap!
I'm just speaking for this chap,
and others I could name,
just playing silly games).
But all good things must end,
as philosophy would contend,
so while this game dies next day,
perhaps another game we'll play?

Rach said...

the nearest I'll ever get to understanding philosophy is reading Playto and a Platypus Walk Into a Bar!

Anonymuse said...

If you convert that into haiku format you may just win a prize Rach.

jams o donnell said...

Ah you are right it will take a while to divvy up the prizes McC!

jams o donnell said...

Rach, please come back and tell the joke!

Claude said...

As McBoozeigall says
Are we dead? Are we alive?
Shrodinger took a few days
With a cat, to this arrive.

In Jams'box, we're all packed up
Trying hard to well survive
I beg of him don't open up
Let the atoms thrive and thrive.

Anonymous said...

Queen Claude is getting back into her stride. It's good to see.

jams o donnell said...

Rach has advised that Plato.Platypus refers to this book:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Plato-Platypus-Walk-into-Understanding/dp/0143113879/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1296421245&sr=8-1

Sounds intriguing!

jams o donnell said...

Claude you are back and you are BAD!

Francis Hunt said...

One final offering, inspired (like my two earlier) by Mr. Eliot's Cats and dealing with various issues raised by Schrödinger according to a rather obscure school of medieval philosophy:

(for Claude :-))


The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter;
When Schrödinger put his inside of the box,
Whether living nine lives, or dead in the water,
A question of radioactive botox.
Duns Scotus, for his part, addressing the question,
Considered the naming of things, we suppose,
And with his reflections on formal distinction,
Inspired Mr. Ecco’s The Name of the Rose.

Claude said...

@ Jams -

Am I bad? My mother would say
Tis company you choose and keep.
With contrite heart, I weep and weep
Poor Jams for all of you I pray.

@ Francis -
I wondered about Umberto
Was it him, or did old Plato
Entered his soul, and with his toes
Nudged him with much nonsense echoes?

jams o donnell said...

Bravo Francis another Masterpiece!

Claude you are not wicked bad but superbad in the sense of being great!

Claude said...

I knew, Jams! I'm just having fun. I was also going to make a pun with Eco. I stopped just in time....Francis is magnificent!

Anonymous said...

With Francis and Claude, the cream (certainly some of it) rises to the top as things settle down at the end of a turbulent but enjoyable journey. I will be busy tomorrow, but hope to see some more cream flowing upwards to the top. It's been fun Jams.

Claude said...

HI - You were fun to be with. We started this whole thing and kept it going for a while, waiting for people to join in. I'm so glad many people entered the game with amusing and great comments. I think Jams is a genius!

Tom Freeman said...

There is some sterling work going on here!

Here's a quick haiku (aren't they all) about Hume's view of miracles:

Water into wine
Or just drunken witnesses:
Which is likelier?

Ole Phat Stu said...

Three hundred comments
Are something to think about
My philosophy

jams o donnell said...

H it ha been a whole lot of fun. Your contributions under so many guises have been wonderful.

It may be some time before I decide who wins what but expect a copy of the Poor Mouth at least!

jams o donnell said...

Tom that's excellent! Bravo!

jams o donnell said...

Claude it's been a great ride. It would have been nothing without you all!


Stu so many comments, a lot of fun and some thoughtful poetry. It has been a resounding success!

And this, the 300th comment of course!

Tom Freeman said...

Actually, on reflection, my miracle haiku would be much improved (for whatever that’s worth) like this:

Water into wine
Or wine into witnesses:
Which would you swallow?

Knatolee said...

Fabulous! You topped 300! Finished up by Tom's excellent haiku.

jams o donnell said...

Tom that is excellent!

It's been a roaring success eh Knat!

CalumCarr said...

Words from Calum on his last day
As blogger - not living - I say.
More sense from random keyboard flaying
Than grand thoughts and ideas conveying

______


Listen not to the words of the wordy
Nor the whisperings of a wee birdie
Act out from your heart
For change to kick-start
Build a life and a future more sturdy

jams o donnell said...

Calum I am sad to see that you have killed your blog. I hope that you will still be around

CalumCarr said...

Jams, I don't intend being around.

All the posts are available - other than Sunday's which was deleted - just not readily so.

Claude said...

Calum - I'm so grateful that you left the blog on. It gives me the joy to go and listen to the music posts again. I never tire of hearing good music, again and again. I was happy to see that your selections are still accessible on YouTube under the CalumCarr1 name. Many, many thanks!
Take care, dear Calum. See you again, I hope.

jams o donnell said...

Calum I am sorry to hear that you are leaving the blogosphere. I hope things go well for you. All the best!

Floyd said...

I have a haiku:
Lacan was a twat
mathemas my argie ass

jams o donnell said...

Haha amigo Argentino! A goof one o end proceedings!

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