“As poets and as readers we are both the users and the transmitters of this lexicon. Today we need to keep adding not subtracting meaning, remembering not forgetting, to connect ourselves to the chain that ultimately joins all cultures.”
Welcome to Lexicon
Unlike Ludwig, Sophia, in whose memory this site is maintained, did not accept “remaining silent” as a viable intellectual option—not because she thought ultimate meaning any more expressible than did Wittgenstein, but because she thought the battle was necessary.
Heroic, doomed to failure, absolutely essential.
Love is most nearly itself When here and now cease to matter. TS Eliot, East Coker, Four Quartets
Poetry Prize Update It is planned that Sophia’s prize will be up and running again next year. There will be a slightly different format, but a similar emphasis. Culture is a living organism. It needs the rich soil of history in order to unfold its potential. “Know thyself,” was the injunction inscribed at Delphi (it is, as Sophia notes in Kaddish, "…the one wise thing the Delphic woman said”), but we cannot truly know ourselves without understanding the network of influences that have made us. The full flowering of creativity is necessarily grounded in this knowledge. As the ancient Greeks
July 30th –Table Reserved
Poetry on the Hill As part of the Maleny Celebration of Books this year a poetry reading took place under the majestic native fig tree on the hill at the Maleny precinct. Sponsored by Unity Water (who carefully tend the Obi Obi Creek which runs through the precinct), and organised by the intrepid Fiona Dempster, the event was a successful newcomer to the Celebration. (Thanks are well and truly due to Jim Soorley of Unity Water and to Fiona for ensuring the event ran so smoothly, and so successfully.) Along with the other poets whose work was featured (Angela Gardner,
The Ripples section of Sophia’s website is designed to highlight the various creative endeavours inspired by her life and work. Recently we added the following items. Others are to follow. Elegy for Sophia by Gershon Maller: http://sophianugentsiegal.com/sophias-elegy/ The website: http://sophianugentsiegal.com/the-phoenix/ Fiona Dempster's impress of Sophia's poem: http://sophianugentsiegal.com/with-the-eye-of-beauty-a-commission-for-sophia/ I say your name: http://sophianugentsiegal.com/i-say-your-name/
The Phoenix One of the things that has been notable since the construction of Sophia’s website has been the number of people who have commented on how lovely it is. “The website is beautiful”, they say. Yes, it is. I think so too—and I want to place here my thanks to Katie White from Phoenix Design for bringing conception to reality. Katie was asked to create a platform that had a lovely clarity, so evoking Sophia herself, whose thought was like a room filled with light. In this way, the website itself has become one of those "ripples" of Sophie's
With the Eye of Beauty: A Commission for Sophia Sophia believed in the power of beauty, and she found it in complex thought, in the spiritual clarity of moral choice, in the discipline of loving another, in the physical beauty of nature, and in the perilous but wonderful battle with impermanence which is art. Sophia loved art with a passion. Ever since that first trip to Italy when she was 4, works of art had had a powerful resonance for her. She enjoyed going to galleries, loved art books, and was knowledgeable about art history across civilisations. In fact, appreciating
Happy Birthday, Will The world’s a stage, Will . . . and you’re still a headline act. Happy birthday, old friend. I think these would make you laugh… Atkinson & Laurie and Whitmore and Wynn
Easter Sunday Thus, taking a body like our own, because all our bodies were liable to the corruption of death, He surrendered His body to death instead of all, and offered it to the Father. This He did out of sheer love for us, so that in His death all might die, and the law of death thereby be abolished because, having fulfilled in His body that for which it was appointed, it was thereafter voided of its power for men. This He did that He might turn again to incorruption men who had turned back to corruption, and make
Good Friday—Crucifixion Easter is the holiest festival in the Christian calendar. Steeped in compelling reminders of the presence of suffering and of the ineradicable human capacity for evil which all too often ends in such suffering, the story of Easter is one with which modernity, in its relentless “pursuit of happiness,” has become increasingly uncomfortable. Yet it is Easter that holds Christianity’s deepest truth. Death, St Paul tells us, is “the last enemy”—and it is death whose final and utter defeat is symbolised in the Easter narrative. Every year, at Pesach, Jews celebrate not just the freeing of the Jewish