“Life isn’t long enough for love and art.”
–from THE MOON AND SIXPENCE by W. Somerset Maugham
Based on the life of Paul Gauguin, The Moon and Sixpence is W. Somerset Maugham’s ode to the powerful forces behind creative genius. Charles Strickland is a staid banker, a man of wealth and privilege. He is also a man possessed of an unquenchable desire to create art. As Strickland pursues his artistic vision, he leaves London for Paris and Tahiti, and in his quest makes sacrifices that leave the lives of those closest to him in tatters. Through Maugham’s sympathetic eye Strickland’s tortured and cruel soul becomes a symbol of the blessing and the curse of transcendent artistic genius, and the cost in human lives it sometimes demands. READ an excerpt here: http://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/…/the-moon-and-sixpence-…/
There are countless lures in our lives or it may be that our lives are made of lures. Mine is the sea. I hear its song all over the year and like Ulysses’ sailors I am not wise enough to deafen my ears. I am trapped into its blue.
The sea knows things and is a cure. For loneliness, grief, unhappiness and love, as Mr. Somerset Maugham wisely put:
“You know, when one’s in love,’ I said, ‘and things go all wrong, one’s terribly unhappy and one thinks one won’t ever get over it. But you’ll be astounded to learn what the sea will do.
Well, love isn’t a good sailor and it languishes on a sea voyage. You’ll be surprised when you have the Atlantic between you and Larry to find how slight the pang is that before you sailed seemed intolerable.”
―W. Somerset Maugham, The Razor’s Edge
So when one’s in love, get on a boat… I cannot help but love Somerset’s magic realism.
I illustrate with pictures from my short May holiday in the Ionian.
Nowhither = to or toward no place.
“Some of us look for the Way in opium and some in God, some of us in whiskey and some in love. It is all the same Way and it leads nowhither.”
― W. Somerset Maugham, The Painted Veil
Art by Rafal Olbinski.
Have an axe to grind = to have a strong personal opinion about something that you want people to accept and that is the reason why you do something.
I have an axe to grind about fairness…
Or as dear Somerset (Maugham) used to say: “It is unsafe to take your reader for more of a fool than he is. ”
What I have learned in business is to always dress up the truth in the most beautiful words I can muster.
When you paint like this, words are speechless…
By Julius von Klever.
“The common idea that success spoils people by making them vain, egotistical and self-complacent is erroneous; on the contrary, it makes them, for the most part, humble, tolerant and kind. Failure makes people bitter and cruel.”
– W. Somerset Maugham
As for me, success is tiptoeing to where you can touch the stars and the moon.
Art by Rafal Olbinski.
Coffee and Somerset for me …
W.Somerset Maugham- 25 January 1874 – 16 December 1965.
Uncanny observer of human nature and my personal trainer and influencer:
“It was a night so beautiful that your soul seemed hardly able to bear the prison of the body.”
“Irony is a gift of the gods, the most subtle of all the modes of speech. It is an armour and a weapon; it is a philosophy and a perpetual entertainment; it is food for the hungry of wit and drink to those thirsting for laughter…”
“The faculty for myth is innate in the human race. It seizes with avidity upon any incidents, surprising or mysterious, in the career of those who have at all distinguished themselves from their fellows, and invents a legend to which it then attaches a fanatical belief. It is the protest of romance against the commonplace of life.”
“All the words I use in my stories can be found in the dictionary—it’s just a matter of arranging them into the right sentences.”
– His stories are as simple and as beautiful as cherry blossoms in the moonlight.
Art by Kaii Higashiyama.