“A Single Wand of Rusted Quince”: On the Visionary Poetry of Bohuslav Reynek

Mike Tate / LA Review of Books

First this:

A single wand
of rusted quince,
furred red-blonde,
wonder of scents

Forehead fragrant.
A cordial kiss.
Perfume flagrant —
the heart feels this.

Followed by this:

One may strain to read the first lines of “Quince on the Table” as covert political commentary on idealism turning to tyranny, with the “rust” serving as a dangerous, poisonous analogue to the deepest red of the new communist flag.

I once read that poetry freed words of their definitions, effectively unbounding meaning from semantics and causing all language to be both full of meaning while also being without it. There’s a zen to processing poetry with this in mind, and it’s not a state that I have found easy to achieve.

Giants Add Another Face of Another Franchise

Jeff Sullivan / Fangraphs

I read this entire thing and I’m not really sure why.

2017: Two Cents

Reverse Shot staff / Reverse Shot

Reverse Shot consistently has the best takes with regard to the filmic arts. They’re considerate, lyrical and erudite. Every year, they do several retrospectives with each serving a slightly different purpose; this one is the freest of structure, with no agenda other than, well, the critics’ Two Cents on the year.

Read it.

The RIO Monad

Michael Snoyman / FP Complete

I’m in the process of prototyping some asynchronous IO stuff at work right now, and although it will not ultimately be in Haskell, I have found that when prototyping things, using Haskell results in a concise and well-typed interface. the RIO monad, which is effectively ReaderT a IO (), is a thing I’d like to refactor for.

Secondly, in regards to choosing Haskell for protoyping, it forces you to begin a project with its intial roots sowed in correctness. Even (especially?) when the final product will not be written in Haskell. In a paper called Total Haskell is Reasonable Coq, the authors posit that the translation from a total Haskell program, that is a program with no partial functions, to a Coq proof was trivial. In fact, they wrote a tool which extracts a total Haskell program to a Coq proof. While a total program is a pretty elusive and mysterious beast, there are always critcal sections of a progam that must be total, because otherwise it would fail to serve its purpose. Having a priori proof that these sections are correct before a line of production code is written is invaluable, and when prototyping in Haskell, you get this for free.