1) My favorite picture of the day is of  an orthodox Jewish man, adorned with balloons, walking in the street of the conservative Mea Shearim neighborhood in Jerusalem.

 

From a hot air ballon Festival Leon, Mexico

 

Have you ever flown in a hot air balloon? 

I never have. I would love the view, but with my fear of heights I would probably spend the time in the middle of the gondola, clutching a parachute. 

2) My first stop every day is NASA’s image gallery.  Today’s amazing image.

http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/imagegallery/index.html

“This composite image shows N49, the aftermath of a supernova explosion in the Large Magellanic Cloud. A new long observation from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory reveals evidence for a bullet-shaped object being blown out of debris field left over from an exploded star.

In order to detect this bullet, researchers used Chandra to observe N49 for more than 30 hours. Using the new Chandra data, the age of N49 — as it appears in the image — is thought to be about 5,000 years and the energy of the explosion is estimated to be about twice that of an average supernova. These preliminary results suggest that the original explosion was caused by the collapse of a massive star.”

3) I wanted to post a new song, but couldn’t find any new releases that I liked, so I’ll post a poem about childhood, by my favorite poet Walt Whitman. 

Heard any new songs you can recommend? 

A Child Said What Is Grass by Walt Whitman 

A child said, What is the grass? fetching it to me with full
hands;

How could I answer the child?. . . .I do not know what it
is any more than he.
  

I guess it must be the flag of my disposition, out of hopeful
green stuff woven.

Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord,
A scented gift and remembrancer designedly dropped,
Bearing the owner’s name someway in the corners, that we
may see and remark, and say Whose?

Or I guess the grass is itself a child. . . .the produced babe
of the vegetation.

Or I guess it is a uniform hieroglyphic,
And it means, Sprouting alike in broad zones and narrow
zones,
Growing among black folks as among white,
Kanuck, Tuckahoe, Congressman, Cuff, I give them the
same, I receive them the same.

And now it seems to me the beautiful uncut hair of graves.

Tenderly will I use you curling grass,
It may be you transpire from the breasts of young men,
It may be if I had known them I would have loved them;
It may be you are from old people and from women, and
from offspring taken soon out of their mother’s laps,
And here you are the mother’s laps.

This grass is very dark to be from the white heads of old
mothers,
Darker than the colorless beards of old men,
Dark to come from under the faint red roofs of mouths.

O I perceive after all so many uttering tongues!
And I perceive they do not come from the roofs of mouths
for nothing.

I wish I could translate the hints about the dead young men
and women,
And the hints about old men and mothers, and the offspring
taken soon out of their laps.

What do you think has become of the young and old men?
What do you think has become of the women and
children?

They are alive and well somewhere;
The smallest sprouts show there is really no death,
And if ever there was it led forward life, and does not wait
at the end to arrest it,
And ceased the moment life appeared.

All goes onward and outward. . . .and nothing collapses,
And to die is different from what any one supposed, and
luckier.

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