A moment of light and shadow, color and line, up and down, sky and lake, what appears and what appears reflected, all seem to hinge on the surface of the water or the surface of the air, take either one, and by taking one breath and falling up or leaping down, two worlds exchange places–the … Continue reading Bruichladdich Octomore Masterclass 8.2 With A Tasting Of King Crimson 1973 And 1974 Varietals And Plenty of Nosings From Andrew Jefford, Carl Jung And Ian Richardson Reciting William Blake.
We’re told where we’ll end up. In the warehouse surrounded by oak barrels aging smoked, fermented and distilled barley. We’ll gather in a half circle facing our tour guide as she tells us what’s about to pass our lips. Crossing through doorways, entering rooms and worlds we usually don’t see, usually don’t walk into and … Continue reading Turning And Turning In The Ardbeg Labyrinth, While Mulling Over Psychoanalysis And Alchemy, Distillation And Nuages, Yeast And An Equation, Pacific Northwest Forests And Weird Sisters, W.B. Yeats’ Visions, Haggis And Neeps, And Finally A Snake Devouring Its Own Tail Grooving To Funkadelic.
Four mile trip from Port Ellen to Ardbeg distillery. We’re walking from our cottage northwest of the town, so add another half mile. We start in pastureland bordered by conifer plantations. Sheep graze outside the window in the morning, and further on cattle graze and gaze. Smell of pine resin, manure and sea salt as … Continue reading Walking To Ardbeg With The Beekeeper’s Apprentice, Words From A Whirlpool, Scattered Cows And Sheep, And Egill Skallagrímsson’s Drinking Toast.
Water, grass, thistle and stones. Rocks. Arriving on Islay means close quarters with quartzite, limestone, slate and shale with many cresting intrusions called sills of metamorphic rock abundant through the southeastern part the island known as Kildalton. As Andrew Jefford writes (and I’ll return to his wonderful prose often from Peat Smoke And Spirit) . … Continue reading A Drinking Man Arrives On Islay, Has A Pour Of Lagavulin, Watches Sea and Stone, Looks At A Thistle And Listens To Robert Fripp’s “Abandonment To Divine Providence.”
Last I left Love, I considered Nick Cave’s dark turnings of the lover’s call, playing off of Dante’s first sonnet of beatific and cannibalistic vision. Yet, Dante a few sonnets on in Vita Nuova, also broods on the havoc Love causes, so one might say with Marc Antony in Shake the Spear’s Julius Caesar, “Cry … Continue reading More Terror and Terroir Of Love As We Still Ascend, As We Must Ascend With Dante Alighieri, PJ Harvey, Diotima And Her Ladder, The Supremes, Jacques Lacan, Edgar Allan Poe, Nick Cave, Jaufre Rudel and R.E.M. With A Pour Of Caol Ila And A Slice Of Smoked Eel.
The sunset burns the sky. Such mysteries occur all the time. I might think the world’s on fire, a revealing and ending through flames silhouetting branches, trunks and needles; but no, sadly apocalypse will have to wait for another year. Still, world-altering changes have taken place, at least for the family. I moved with Gabriela … Continue reading Goodbye To Two Thousand And Eighteen With Three Single Malt Scotch Bottles From The Southern Coast Of Islay As The Sky Burns Over Nacka And I Listen To Vic Chesnutt And Elf Power.
Drinking Houston means great beer, spirits and wine procured at Premium Draught and Spec’s. And the great Islay pour I first experienced at Warren’s Inn in Old Market Square downtown, remains the great dram I pour in my library. Ah, Laphroaig! Especially the Cask Strength. Drinking Houston with books has been a mainstay for me … Continue reading Drinking Houston