Respite

Respite
Tiger Swallowtail butterfly, sipping some nectar in my Rose of Sharon flowers

Introduction:

My photo
Current: Danbury, CT, United States
Welcome! A few years ago, I discovered an application that artists employ in their works to bring cultural awareness to their audiences. Having discerned this semiotic theory that applies to literature, music, art, film, and the media, I have devoted the blog, "Theory of Iconic Realism" to explore this theory. The link to the publisher of my book is below. If you or your university would like a copy of this book for your library or if you would like to review it for a scholarly journal, please contact the Edwin Mellen Press at the link listed below. Looking forward to hearing from you!

22 August, 2016

Thomas Paine and Revolutionary Consciousness: A Lesson for Twenty-First Century Readers

Thomas Paine differentiates between natural and civil rights of man, with the latter originating from the former. He interprets the aristocracy’s use of language as a means of establishing a sense of power. Echoing the consciousness of the eighteenth century philosopher, John Locke, Paine elucidates for his readers an emerging global consciousness in Rights of Man:

The progress of time and circumstances, which men assign to the accomplishment of great changes, is too mechanical to measure the force of the mind, and the rapidity of reflection, by which revolutions are generated:  All the old governments have received a shock from those that already appear, and which were once more improbable, and are a greater subject of wonder, than a general revolution in Europe would be now…. what we now see in the world, from the Revolutions of America and France, are a renovation of the natural order of things, a system of principles as universal as truth and existence of man, and combining moral with political happiness and national prosperity.[1]

Our politicians of the twenty-first century could do well to consider Mr. Paine's words. These fundamental beliefs authentically provide his readership with contrasting attributes of the narrow vision present in governmental hierarchy in contrast with those belonging to humanity in general. A correlation between humanity and nature formed the consciousness of revolutionary thought, which eventually fed into the elaborate (and beautiful) artistic,  musical, and literary expressions of romanticism. 








[1] Quoted in Foner 536-37.

19 August, 2016

My Dad and Singing the "Blues"

August 20th would have been my Dad's birthday.  Happy Birthday, Dad, where ever you are! (Our home was filled with Leos!) Thoughts of my Dad pop into my head today. Below is a poem about the irises that he brought to me many years ago. "They're your flower, Jeanne Iris. The blue matches the blue in your eyes and they bear your name." This was a significant statement, for my genetic 'flaw' of blue eyes had always made me the brunt of family jokes. Everyone else in my family had brown eyes. 

The second poem describes the first thing I experience in the morning. My favorite time of day is that moment when I first awaken, sometimes still dreaming, and I look out my window to a lovely little forest, night animals still calling to their mates, no human sound outdoors at all. It's just before dawn, and just after that 'darkest hour,' and for only a few minutes, everything is blue. 



Blue Iris
My Dad brought me some irises
one day
I planted them,
and when 'moving day' arrived,
those bulbs were dug up
brought along for the ride.
Now, every June, they appear
bearing memories of his smiles 
more vividly than the previous year
keeping his beautiful memory alive.
Now, as I strive
to achieve daily goals,
his voice rings clearly in my ear:
"You can be anything you want to be, my dear...
if you just persevere."  

© Jeanne I. Lakatos
********************************************

Just Before Dawn
Eyes open slowly.
Still, I walk along that lovely beach
and glance up to see a small village.
That same, intriguing dream,
now, it fades away
with the early morning mist.
 I feel a gentle, cool breeze
waft across my face
and turn my head
toward the choir of crickets,
still calling to their mates.
An owl wings its way
midst entangled branches,
eerily hooting through the blue.
My gaze reaches the maple tree
standing tall in this tableau
all blue, shades of blue, no other color
but blue. Everywhere!
Leaves, tree trunks, even the lone deer,
all blue.
It's no longer evening, not yet dawn.
Sky and sea are one magic hue.
The song of one bird greets me:
a prayer for the new day
in this tranquil moment of 
blue.

© Jeanne I. Lakatos

18 August, 2016

Back to School (or) A New Box of Crayons

Here I sit, at my desk, having finished writing my course syllabi for the incoming university students of the new academic year. Many thoughts are racing through my head right now. Hmmm... dilemma, which one do I choose? Okay, here goes.....



Back to School 
(or) 
A New Box of Crayons

There is nothing as sweet as the waxy aroma
of a brand new 64-count box of Crayola crayons
bought especially for that first day of school.
It has the crayon sharpener right on the box!
And oh, the most marvelous feeling:
sliding the very first crayon out of its sleeve.
Periwinkle Blue! Carnation Pink! Burnt Siena!

What does it mean, this little box of crayons?
Summer is over! Those lazy, creative days sitting
under the maple tree, dreaming of 'next school year'
are etched forever as summer memories,
and those encouraging messages 
from last June now come to fruition. 
New books, new shoes, new clothes,
New hope, new friends! Old ones, too, 
but now with new stories to share. 

Early autumn, with its cool breezes, 
whisks variegated leaves that dance 
among fallen, multi-hued apples:
Nature's fresh box of crayons
tossed with a sanguine force that energizes
each step toward the school's front door.
Like the rainbow after a summer rain,
kind smiles herald enlightenment
that radiates from a Teacher's love.

© Jeanne I. Lakatos

15 August, 2016

Anaphora Poetry

Below, is a poem written in the Anaphora poetic format. I took the photo in Dublin a few years ago at  an international street vendor competition. Observing this 'fairy' with the many children she attracted was magical.



For Giveness
Given 
from the heart,
given with humility,
given freely,
this gift of joy
is a given 
that another will 
give
passing the gift
forward.

© Jeanne I. Lakatos

09 August, 2016

Mathematical Sets

Venn Diagram photo from Google Images

Mathematical Sets
It all figures:
balanced equations
sets of added digits
occasionally subtracted
divided by common factors
multiplied by these too
percentages based on 
the configuration 
of a situated O
and its relation
to the point.

© Jeanne I. Lakatos

06 August, 2016

Mint Julep Iced Tea for a Summer Celebration




We are now in that dynamic aspect of the zodiac calendar known as Leo. Today, August 6, is my day! Hope you all get a big slice of my gorgeous birthday cake, settle down with a cool drink, and enjoy this sizzling August heat. 
Even though I was born and raised in Detroit, I lived in HOTlanta, Georgia for 12 years, so below is a little Southern recipe to quench your thirst. You need not add the bourbon if that’s not your cup of tea. ; ) 

Mint Julep Iced Tea

INGREDIENTS
8 mint leaves *
1 lemon, sliced *
1 lime, sliced *
1 cup bourbon
3 cups cold sweetened tea *
Cubed or crushed ice
* You can substitute Celestial Seasonings ‘Lemon Zinger’ tea, about 4 tea bags with 2 quarts of water in place of all these starred ingredients.

INSTRUCTIONS
Combine first 3 ingredients in a 2-quart pitcher, pressing with spoon to crush mint.
Stir in bourbon and tea. Add ice.  Makes 2 quarts.