Ancient Spell

I came across this story about a spell written on an Egyptian tomb which may be the world’s oldest Semetic text.  The whole thing is cool, but I especially love that “Believing that some snakes spoke the Semitic language of the
Canaanites, Egyptians included the magic spells in inscriptions on two
sides of the sarcophagus in an effort to ward them off.”

Why yes, it makes perfect sense that some snakes would speak the Semitic language of the Canaanites.  How else could Eve have understood the serpent in the Garden?

I tease, but I also wonder.

There’s a theory that the story of the expulsion from the Garden is about Yahweh’s ascendancy over a goddess, possibly Ishtar, to whom the tree of Knowledge and the serpent would have been sacred.  This theory goes something like this–the two creation myths in the Bible are not incompatible.  All gods got together and created men and women and then set about focusing on the men and women who they would claim as their own, tight focus in on the protagonist of our story, Yahweh, and his folks.

Other gods work as teams, but Yahweh wants to be the only god of his people.  Fine, except that there are other gods around, using the same land with their people nearby.  So Yahweh has to make a rule–do what you want, but stay away from this (or these, depending on if you read the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and the Tree of Life as the same or different trees) tree (leaving unspoken, “because it belongs to that goddess and hanging out at that tree might accidentally run you into her”).

And yet, if you read it this way, your heart almost breaks for Eve.  Here she is, faced every day, with God coming into the Garden in the cool of the evening, looking, as He does, like a man, like Adam.  And there, near the Tree that is forbidden to them, a Sacred being visits that she resembles.  That impulse, to see yourself as truly belonging to the Universe and not just an afterthought hastily scraped together out of bone and mud, it’s compelling and understandable.

Did I have a point?  I can’t remember.  The Tylenol is kicking in.

It’s just that there’s something compelling to me about the serpents that speak the same language as the Semetic people, but I can’t quite put my finger on it. 

The Headache

This morning, as Mrs. Wigglebottom and I were walking around the neighborhood, we heard this sound, like a dog squealing in terror as its muzzle is crushed under the weight of some mad man’s boot.

In that moment, you have to decide, will I investigate what is clearly a horrid scene or will I keep walking?

Before we had to make up our minds, I figured out that the sound we were hearing was the train, slowly scraping its wheels against the track, not quite able to gain traction as slick metal slid past slick metal.

It was a relief, let me tell you.  But that unsettled feeling, of barely escaping witnessing something terrible, has stuck with me all day.  And now, a headache has sliced up through my head and across my eyeball.  It hurts to look at things.  It hurts to shut my eye.

I have only two Tylenol left.

I hope it’s enough 


A Sonnet in Honor of Lynnster

Of course I miss Magniloquence.  She can’t

comment, which makes me sad and makes the talk

around here more dull, almost like a trance

overtakes us, so we mull Peter Faulk

Instead of fighting about important

things.  But that’s not all.  Let’s look to the right.

‘Really old stuff at Blogger.’  Oh why can’t

all my blogging be in one place?  I’d fight

to have just one complete Tiny Cat Pant

Instead of a pair of tiny blog legs.

A blog should be whole like the sun or your

underwear, all in one place, found by Megs*

and screamed over in outrage and terror.

Oh, Lynnster, if you do find a way to

Make my blog whole, I’ll holler “woo hoo-oo!”





*Ivy, sorry to bring your daughter into this, but I had to have something to rhyme with legs.

State of the Union

You know, the thing that annoys me, no, that really pisses me off is that listening to Bush is that half of what he says makes perfect sense. I’m willing to buy that there are two religious factions in Iraq, one supported by Al Qaida types, the other by Iran. Both of whom hate each other but also hate us. Okay, wow, nuanced discussion of difficult problems.

And then he immediately starts talking about our enemy, the terrorists. To use a baseball analogy, he seems to be suggesting that everyone who plays the Rangers is the Chicago White Sox.

Also, I’m eager to hear what folks think of this idea of civilian reserves. Is this a mercenary corps? And he’s talking about enlarging the military. Where will these extra military folks come from? I was unaware that we were lowering the standards for people to enlist because those folks were just beating down the doors. So, I’ll be curious to see what folks think of this.

And did anyone else have a good snicker when Bush was talking about how healthcare decisions are best left up to doctors and patients?

I know I did.