Saturday, November 24, 2012

Thanksgiving Desserts

Clockwise from left: Pumpkin Meringue Pie, Coffee Cake, Bombe Chocolate, Pumpkin Cheesecake, Pumpkin Love Cake, Fresh Berries, Chocolate Pretzels, Almond Tart with Figs, Pear-Almond Tart,  Rosy Caramel Apple Pie 
Pumpkin Love Cake
Rosy Caramel Apple Pie
Pumpkin Meringue Pie
[instagram: @foldedvictory]

Thursday, November 15, 2012

"Le Rat qui s'est retiré du monde" de Jean de La Fontaine

Les Levantins en leur légende
Disent qu'un certain rat, las des soins d'ici-bas,
            Dans un fromage de Hollande
            Se retira loin du tracas.
            La solitude était profonde,
            S'étendant partout à la ronde.
Notre ermite nouveau subsistait là dedans.
            Il fit tant, de pieds et de dents,
Qu'en peu de jours il eut au fond de l'ermitage
Le vivre et le couvert; que faut-il davantage?
Il devint gros et gras: Dieu prodigue ses biens
            A ceux qui font voeu d'être siens.
            Un jour, au dévot personnage,
            Des députés du peuple rat
S'en vinrent demander quelque aumone légère:
            Ils allaient en terre étrangère
Chercher quelque secours contre le peuple chat;
            Ratopolis était bloquée:
On les avait contraints de partir sans argent,
            Attendu l'état indigent
            De la république attaquée.
Ils demandaient fort peu, certains que le secours
            Serait prêt dans quatre ou cinq jours.
« Mes amis, dit le solitaire,
Les choses d'ici-bas ne me regardent plus:
            En quoi peut un pauvre reclus
            Vous assister? Que peut-il faire
Que de prier le ciel qu'il vous aide en ceci?
J'espère qu'il aura de vous quelque souci.»
            Ayant parlé de la sorte,
            Le nouveau saint ferma sa porte.

            Que désignai-je, à votre avis,
            Par ce rat si peu secourable?
            Un moine? Non, mais un dervis :
Je suppose qu'un moine est toujours charitable.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Goethe's Erlkönig

Wer reitet so spät durch Nacht und Wind?
Es ist der Vater mit seinem Kind;
Er hat den Knaben wohl in dem Arm,
Er fasst ihn sicher, er hält ihn warm.

Mein Sohn, was birgst du so bang dein Gesicht? —
Siehst, Vater, du den Erlkönig nicht?
Den Erlenkönig mit Kron’ und Schweif? —
Mein Sohn, es ist ein Nebelstreif. —

„Du liebes Kind, komm, geh mit mir!
Gar schöne Spiele spiel’ ich mit dir;
Manch’ bunte Blumen sind an dem Strand,
Meine Mutter hat manch gülden Gewand.“ —

Mein Vater, mein Vater, und hörest du nicht,
Was Erlenkönig mir leise verspricht? —
Sei ruhig, bleibe ruhig, mein Kind;
In dürren Blättern säuselt der Wind. —

„Willst, feiner Knabe, du mit mir gehn?
Meine Töchter sollen dich warten schön;
Meine Töchter führen den nächtlichen Reihn
Und wiegen und tanzen und singen dich ein.“ —

Mein Vater, mein Vater, und siehst du nicht dort
Erlkönigs Töchter am düstern Ort? —
Mein Sohn, mein Sohn, ich seh’ es genau:
Es scheinen die alten Weiden so grau. —

„Ich liebe dich, mich reizt deine schöne Gestalt;
Und bist du nicht willig, so brauch’ ich Gewalt.“ —
Mein Vater, mein Vater, jetzt faßt er mich an!
Erlkönig hat mir ein Leids getan! —

Dem Vater grauset’s; er reitet geschwind,
Er hält in Armen das ächzende Kind,
Erreicht den Hof mit Mühe und Not;
In seinen Armen das Kind war tot.


Who rides there so late through the night dark and drear?
The father it is, with his infant so dear;
He holdeth the boy tightly clasp'd in his arm,
He holdeth him safely, he keepeth him warm.

"My son, wherefore seek'st thou thy face thus to hide?"
"Look, father, the Alder King is close by our side!
Dost see not the Alder King, with crown and with tail?"
"My son, 'tis the mist rising over the plain."

"Oh, come, thou dear infant! oh come thou with me!
For many a game I will play there with thee;
On my beach, lovely flowers their blossoms unfold,
My mother shall grace thee with garments of gold."

"My father, my father, and dost thou not hear
The words that the Alder King now breathes in mine ear?"
"Be calm, dearest child, thy fancy deceives;
the wind is sighing through withering leaves."

"Wilt go, then, dear infant, wilt go with me there?
My daughters shall tend thee with sisterly care
My daughters by night on the dance floor you lead,
They'll cradle and rock thee, and sing thee to sleep."

"My father, my father, and dost thou not see,
How the Alder King is showing his daughters to me?"
"My darling, my darling, I see it aright,
'Tis the aged grey willows deceiving thy sight."

"I love thee, I'm charm'd by thy beauty, dear boy!
And if thou aren't willing, then force I'll employ."
"My father, my father, he seizes me fast,
For sorely the Alder King has hurt me at last."

The father now gallops, with terror half wild,
He holds in his arms the shuddering child;
He reaches his farmstead with toil and dread, –
The child in his arms lies motionless, dead.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Monday, November 5, 2012

"The Stolen Boat" from William Wordsworth's The Prelude

One summer evening (led by her) I found 
A little boat tied to a willow tree 
Within a rocky cave, its usual home. 
Straight I unloosed her chain, and stepping in 
Pushed from the shore. It was an act of stealth 
And troubled pleasure, nor without the voice 
Of mountain-echoes did my boat move on; 
Leaving behind her still, on either side, 
Small circles glittering idly in the moon, 
Until they melted all into one track 
Of sparkling light. But now, like one who rows, 
Proud of his skill, to reach a chosen point 
With an unswerving line, I fixed my view 
Upon the summit of a craggy ridge, 
The horizon's utmost boundary; far above 
Was nothing but the stars and the grey sky. 
She was an elfin pinnace; lustily 
I dipped my oars into the silent lake, 
And, as I rose upon the stroke, my boat 
Went heaving through the water like a swan; 
When, from behind that craggy steep till then 
The horizon's bound, a huge peak, black and huge, 
As if with voluntary power instinct, 
Upreared its head. I struck and struck again, 
And growing still in stature the grim shape 
Towered up between me and the stars, and still, 
For so it seemed, with purpose of its own 
And measured motion like a living thing, 
Strode after me. With trembling oars I turned, 
And through the silent water stole my way 
Back to the covert of the willow tree; 
There in her mooring-place I left my bark,-- 
And through the meadows homeward went, in grave 
And serious mood; but after I had seen 
That spectacle, for many days, my brain 
Worked with a dim and undetermined sense 
Of unknown modes of being; o'er my thoughts 
There hung a darkness, call it solitude 
Or blank desertion. No familiar shapes 
Remained, no pleasant images of trees, 
Of sea or sky, no colours of green fields; 
But huge and mighty forms, that do not live 
Like living men, moved slowly through the mind 
By day, and were a trouble to my dreams