Huntington Avenue, Boston, June 2017
a detail of Diego Rivera's 1940 mural The Marriage of the Artistic Expression of the North and of the South on This Continent (also known as the Pan-American Unity mural), currently at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
detail of a fresco from a garden room, normally in the House of the Golden Bracelet in Pompeii, temporarily at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco as part of the special exhibit Last Supper in Pompeii: From the Table to the Grave
I have no idea which species this rather prehistoric-looking plant belongs to, as it sprang up in my yard unplanted by me (the prehistoric look mostly comes from the trunk, here unseen, but the total effect is like something decorating a dinosaur diorama)
I was actually in a museum this week, for the first time in nearly a year and a half, so this detail of a mosaic panel from the House of the Geometric Mosaics in Pompeii comes from Last Supper in Pompeii: From the Table to the Grave, on view at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco through 29 August. This astonishing tableau is one of the treasures of the exhibit, as demonstrated by its many manifestations in the gift shop, and no wonder: not only are the very tiny stones arranged to give an accurate depiction of each of the many species shown, but each fish also expresses a surprising amount of personality, an attribute not usually thought of in connection with sea life.
Mr Bloom could easily picture his advent on this scene – the homecoming to the mariner's roadside shieling after having diddled Davy Jones –a rainy night with a blind moon. Across the world for a wife. Quite a number of stories there were on that particular Alice Ben Bolt topic, Enoch Arden and Rip van Winkle and does anybody hereabouts remember Caoc O'Leary, a favourite and most trying declamation piece, by the way, of poor John Casey and a bit of perfect poetry in its own small way? Never about the runaway wife coming back, however much devoted to the absentee. The face at the window! Judge of his astonishment when he finally did breast the tape and the awful truth dawned upon him anent his better half, wrecked in his affections. You little expected me but I've come to stay and make a fresh start. There she sits, a grass widow, at the selfsame fireside. Believes me dead. Rocked in the cradle of the deep. And there sits uncle Chubb or Tomkin, as the case might be, the publican of the Crown and Anchor, in shirtsleeves, eating rumpsteak and onions. No chair for father. Boo! The wind! Her brandnew arrival is on her knee, post mortem child. With a high ro! and a randy ro! and my galloping tearing tandy O! Bow to the inevitable. Grin and bear it. I remain with much love your brokenhearted husband, W. B. Murphy.
The sailor, who scarcely seemed to be a Dublin resident, turned to one of the jarvies with the request:
– You don't happen to have such a thing as a spare chaw about you, do you?
And once again, happy Bloomsday to my mountain flowers.
Six Lions in a Forest, by the Master of the Death of Absalom: I saw this pen-and-ink drawing at the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC on a 2017 trip, but it is normally found at the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam