It is only too sure that the disgusting carnage of our butcheries and kitchens

does not seem to us an evil.

Voltaire, We must take sides 1772



21:30: This evening, at the end of the first full summer day of the year – finally! – I leave the shutters on the courtyard side of the house open, this against my own habit, more so against the custom of the village. At night France closes up.

The curtain in front of door also remains open. Now and then looking up from my book, watching midsummer light slowly extinguish – a luxury after this utterly wasted spring.

22:10 pm: A Pink Dawn, my first full, newly hatched rose, suddenly seems to exude light from inside – like a candle just before it dies out, flickering with an extra effort.

Now, from my living room perspective, the rose has slowly become white. Only the new morning will give her colour once more.

22:30: While outside obscurity takes over, in the firmament of the door window a large, mysteriously blue star is beginning to show itself. On the very same spot, where that pink underwent her metamorphosis into a sheer white.



After some gazing at this miracle it turns out to be the newly purchased mosquito destroyer. Blasphemy – ‘tiny Auschwitz’ the thing has come to be called in the privacy of my inner mind’s room.

Sizzling, it is destroying stray mosquitoes, moths and flies, sending them off into another world.

This absurdity – a festively pimped up hussy, mirroring herself in the front door window.

Sierksma, La Roche 23.6 / 2016


Author: rjsiersk

Sierksma was born in Friesland, a 'county' in the northern part of the Netherlands with its own language which he does not speak and with an obstinate population to which he both belongs and does not belong. A retired Professor of Social Philosophy and Aesthetics, as a Harkness fellow he taught at Rutgers and Berkeley Universities in the USA, and at GUAmsterdam and TUDelft in the Netherlands. In 1991 he was awarded his PhD from Leiden University on the subject of 'Surveillance and Task: Labour Discipline between Utilitarianism and Pragmatism'. His books include Minima Memoria (1993), Lost View (2002 with Jan van Geest), and Litter Scent (2013). He has published poems and articles in Te Elfder Ure, Nynade, Oasis and the Architectural Annual. Half the year he lives in Haarlem, the other half he spends in la France Profonde, living ‘in his own words’ as the house out there was bought with the winnings from his essay Eternal Sin, written for the ECI Essay Prize (1993). In this blog, Sierksma's Sequences, written in English, he is peeping round his own and other people’s perspectives. Not easily satisfied with answers nor with questions, he turns his wry wit to a number of philosophical and historical issues. His aim in writing: to make parts of the world light up in his perspective - not my will, thine! Not being a thief, he has no cook, one wife, some children, one lover and three cats. The reader, interested in my writings on aesthetics, literature, and sociology, may want to open Academia.edu, where various pieces are published.

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