Victoria Starfish and Rachel Lavine

Rosemary 1955 at Company Party 2

Rosemary acted like she owned her four children. She owned great psychic abilities. When I went for a Rose Reading at the Berkeley Psychic Institute, she blocked a young Seer from reading – her son!

Rosemary never met Rena Easton. If she had, she would have nearly choked to death on her sip of Vodka that she hid in the kitchen, under the sink. She would have tried to destroy one of the most beautiful woman in the world – who I did two paintings of. When I found Rena in 2013, we exchanged letters. In my letter I tell her that I had a dream. Her naked twenty year old daughter comes to me in a dream. I did not know she was dead, and wondered if Rena was dead. She asked me to rescue her mother who was living with a dark man. I suspect this is why Rena went to the Sherriff’s office with my long letter torn into pieces – in a brown paper bag. Thus, begins a great Film Noir Tale – with blog! Rena inspired my Bond book, ‘The Royal Janitor’. who has a psychotics Russian- Ukranian bodyguard who is a Biblical Scholar who studies The wicked Women of the Torah. After reading Rena lived with her British Admiral husband on the Isle of Wight, I created Admiral Swineburne, who is Gay.

In 2021, Rachel Lavine became a four star head of of a Naval post. Dark crooked gangster-like men are lining up to become the Republican Presidential Candidates. They will USE RACHEL like a dirty whore to propel themselves into the White House. Her homosexual wickedness is a blessing to fake men of God who back The Gangsters, who will share their power with them. Rachel is a – Jezebel! Consider The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Notorious Damsel)

I found my movie! In 1970 I put Rena on a Greyhound bus in Winnemucca. She was going to attend the University of Nebraska. She was eighteen and a A+ student in High School. They don’t make movies about how young American women – make it in the word – anymore. They look like sexist porno movies. There is an astrological reading in ‘Wicked Woman’. Does Rachel Irving read her astrology every morning? If she does, best not let The Christian Nationalists find it, because they will really demonize her in order to capture more swing votes.

Young farm girls heading to the big city on their own, was the sexiest thing going in Western Civilization. This story – made American Great! I wanted to live in Nebraska and paint great nude paintings of my muse that inspired my sister to take up art. Rena raised the Admiral’s two children in small towns in Montana. Did she have dreams of going to the big city? How about – London? Rena danced in the Royal Ballet. She ends up living with a small rancher in a trailer in the middle of nowhere.

John Presco

See the source image

Rachel Leland Levine (/ləˈviːn/; born October 28, 1957)[1] is an American pediatrician who has served as the United States assistant secretary for health since March 26, 2021.[2] She is also a four-star admiral in the United States Public Health Service Commissioned Corps.

Levine is a professor of pediatrics and psychiatry at the Penn State College of Medicine, and previously served as the Pennsylvania physician general from 2015 to 2017 and as secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health from 2017 to 2021.[3] Levine is one of only a few openly transgender government officials in the United States,[4] and is the first to hold an office that requires Senate confirmation.[5][6] On October 19, 2021, Levine became the first openly transgender four-star officer in the nation’s eight uniformed services.[7]

Levine was named as one of USA Todays women of the year in 2022, which recognizes women who have made a significant impact on society.[8]

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Black Mask Authors

Posted on July 28, 2013 by Royal Rosamond Press


This extremely rare photo of the first west coast Black Mask get-together on January 11, 1936 captures possibly the only meeting of several of these authors.

Pictured in the back row, from left to right, are Raymond J. Moffatt, Raymond Chandler, Herbert Stinson, Dwight Babcock, Eric Taylor and Dashiell Hammett. In the front row, again from left to right, are Arthur Barnes (?), John K. Butler, W. T. Ballard, Horace McCoy and Norbert Davis.

Rosemary told me her father, Royal Rosamond, used to sail to the Channel Islands and camp with his friend, Dashiell Hammett who is seen standing on the right in the photo above.

Aunt Lillian told me she would fall asleep listening to Royal and Erle Stanley Gardner on the typewriter in the living room. Royal was Gardner’s teacher and a member of the Black Mask. I believe I can almost recoginize Black Mask authors under the tree on Santa Cruz Island sitting under a tree with my grandmother, Mary Magdalene Rosamond, who does not look very happy as she embraces a black dog. Who is that woman? Is she a writer? She looks a bit crazed, as does the guy holding a gun. Is Mary hearing some far-out and weird ideas around the campfire?

When I was fifteen Rosemary showed me about six magazines wherein her father’s stories appeared. There were several mysteries. I am going to send the camping photo to some experts. That looks like Raymond Chandler in front of the tent. Is he the guy packing heat?

Hammett wrote the Maltese Falcon that begins with a story about the Knight Templars. Was this a tale passed around the campfire on Santa Cruz Island?

Jon Presco

Copyright 2013

Our Letters

Posted on May 6, 2018 by Royal Rosamond Press

Rena was my muse that Christine stole, along with my art. I was homeless when Rena and I met. I took her to my mountain, where we lived, in a tent. Rena responded to this video I posted. Then, she read something in this blog that displeased her. She did not tell me, or Deputy Dan. My life………….is a trip!

Once per month during a full moonrise at sunset, rangers on Mt. Tamalpais, just north of San Francisco have a moonlight walk. This is the only chance to see this place at night because the park closes at sunset. It was hot, dry and windy above the cold fog. You can literally walk from the cold fog to the hot winds and back again in just a few minutes!

A strong breeze and long exposure time softened the flowing grasses and trees on Mt. Tamalpais. It also pushed the fog rapidly through the Golden Gate and into the bay this evening. I used a 1-second exposure to show lots of more motion. Here, I also had to shelter the camera and tripod with my body in order to avoid camera shake.

Rosamond Press

Helen of Britania

Posted on June 28, 2016 by Royal Rosamond Press


It pained me to write this blog that will prove the most profound and prophetic works of art in history. What I saw in my dream was Rena’s dead daughter bidding me to rescue and take care of her mother. There was much at stake. She was speaking as Ian’s daughter. What may have alarmed Rena, is my implying her daughter took her naked form. and came into my bed in the shape of how I remember her best. Who wouldn’t? A hundred million men have longed to see an extremely beautiful woman – naked! This want is the great engine of all the battleships that have sailed around Britannia, just to keep her safe!

But, she take in a Trojan Horse, and, only a great love story……..will save Britannia, now!

Jon Presco

‘Capturing Beauty’ Copyright 2016

Posted on August 9, 2013 by Royal Rosamond Press

I am going to paint Rena Victoria Easton as Britannia. How perfect! When I’m done, I will see if any of my titled friends on facebook want to purchase it. I will make posters for the Brits to enjoy. Who knows, William Windsor may want it on his wall in order to honor his beautiful wife.

Swineburne, Rosamond, Isle of Wight

Posted on August 23, 2013 by Royal Rosamond Press

by George Richmond, watercolour, 1843

“One of Swinburne’s earliest works about love is Rosamond, a drama in the Elizabethan style, but one that employs a medieval setting and real historical figures as characters. Published in 1860, this play is extra-ordinarily significant for the poet’s future themes and artistic development.

Algernon Charles Swinburne was born in 1837 to a rather illustrious family. His father was Admiral Charles Henry Swinburne (son of Sir John Henry Swinburne) and his mother was Lady Jane Henrietta Ashburnham (daughter of the 3rd Earl of Ashburnham) and so, as their eldest child and a son, great things were no doubt expected of little Algernon.  He grew up in lovely East Dene in Bonchurch on the Isle of Wight (or as I like to call it, the ‘Isle of Victorian Splendidness’) and went off to Eton, then to Oxford.  So far, so traditional.  You can see by the portrait of him at six years old (above), he already had his vibrantly red hair, and by 16 he was already writing poetry.  The only blip on his record was being temporarily expelled (or ‘rusticated’, which sounds like a type of bread.  I do like a rusticated loaf) for publically supporting the attempted assissination of Napoleon III by Felice Orsini.

Rosamond possesses many of the virtues of Swinburne’s later tragedy Chastelard, which has attracted somewhat more critical attention, but the earlier work is usually dismissed as a mere Pre-Raphaelite exercise. Both plays, however, prove inspired throughout by Swinburne’s youthful enchantment with courtly love topoi. In these dramas we can discern the depth of his fascination with the topoi of medieval romance and tourbadour poetry, as well as their effect [37/38] on his treatment of the carnal and the ideal aspects of his constant theme, love.

Analysis of these two works with emphasis on their courtly elements reveals the extent of his early assimilation of values fundamental to medieval love literature, which he adapted to his “modern,” that is, Romantic world view and to his unique artistic needs. In Swinburne’s version of Rosamond, the passionate entanglement between Henry II and his mistress culminates with Rosamond’s murder by his wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine, perhaps the most famous heroine of courtly love lore.2 Similarly, an ethos derived from courtly convention underlies Chastelard’s love for Mary Stuart.

The first of Rosamond’s five scenes is the most forceful in demonstrating Swinburne’s debt to troubadour conventions as well as to Pre-Raphaelite stylistic influences. Courtly love preoccupations and the medieval setting overshadow elements of Jacobean revenge tragedy throughout the play. Swinburne’s Rosamond, rather than the historical queen of the Courts of Love, espouses the religion of love and, as a result of her lived creed, is poisoned by Eleanor out of jealousy. The play’s predominantly lyrical psychodramatic vignettes stress highlights of the relationships among the four main characters during the last months of Rosamond’s life. The action begins in spring and ends in late summer, but the only explicit time lapse occurs between the fourth and fifth scenes, when Henry is abroad, subduing the French provinces. In addition to the historical characters, Swinburne creates the courtier Bouchard, the serviceable object of the jealous Queen’s ambivalent affections. But Rosamond is significant primarily for the characterization of its tragic heroine, whose passion for Henry suggests the power of the courtly love influence on young Swinburne. In the “Prelude” to Tristram of Lyonesse (written nine years later), Swinburne catalogues “the sweet shining signs of women’s names / That [38/39] mark the months out and the weeks anew,” which Love “moves in changeless change of seasons through / To fill the days up of his dateless year” (Poems, IV, 208. Alongside Guenevere, Hero, Cleopatra, and the rest is “The rose-white sphere of flower-named Rosamond.” This Swinburnean heroine conceives of herself not as an individual but rather as a type, the beautiful woman who inspires insatiable and potentially destructive passions: “Yea, I am found the woman in all tales, / The face caught always in the story’s face.” She is Helen, Cressida, Hero, and Cleopatra. In her particular “tale,” as in Swinburne’s versions of stories about Cleopatra, Guenevere, and Yseult, the heroine herself is destroyed. Yet we are conditioned from the play’s first scene, as the “flower-white” Rosamond wrestles with the fact of her own mutability, to accept the drama of her death as merely one episode in Love’s timeless, cyclic tragedy.

Swinburne’s choice of the “rose of the world” as one of his first subjects for verse suggests that he associated his conception of Rosamond with courtly love allegory, specifically the Roman de la Rose, in which the rose is the eternal symbol of the beloved and of the perfect beauty that is fearfully transient but simultaneously immortal.3 As in Swinburne’s later lyrics “Before the Mirror” and “The Year of the Rose,” Rosamond’s central symbol is the rose, and, like them, this play recapitulates the major preoccupations of courtly love poetry: the apotheosis of beauty; love as the necessary consequence of beauty fear of mutability; and a final insistence on the immortality of both love and beauty, which can be attained, paradoxically, only through death.

[39/40] The first scene of Rosamond characterizes its heroine as simultaneously enchanted with her own beauty, exalted by her love affair with Henry, and insecure about the permanence of her beauty and her love. Surrounded by the ephemeral rose blossoms with which she identifies in the maze at Woodstock, she is alone with her maid, Constance. Here Rosamond reveals her concern with the world’s slanderous gossip about her, and as the scene progresses she attempts gradually to rebuild her self-confidence-in her beauty, in Henry’s continuing devotion, and in the unassailable value of beauty and of love. At first, she is defensive:

If six leaves make a rose, I stay red yet
And the wind nothing ruins me; who says
I am at waste? (Tragedies, I, 231)

She repeatedly challenges Constance to “say I am not fair,” in order to elicit the praise she pretends to despise. She equivocates between self-doubt and unabashed vanity: “Leave off my praise . . . quaint news to hear, That I am fair, have hair strung through with gold” (Tragedies, I, 232). Then she renews herself by remembering Henry’s courtly verses of adulation, and concludes by defining her own and the world’s goodness purely in terms of beauty, the ultimate value that Swinburne everywhere associates with love:

But I that am
Part of the perfect witness for the world,
How good it is; I chosen in God’s eyes
To fill the lean account of under men, The lank and hunger-bitten ugliness
Of half his people . . . I that am, ah yet,
And shall be till the worm has share in me,
Fairer than love or the clean truth of God,
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
I . . . have roses in my name, and make
All flowers glad to set their colour by. (Tragedies, I, 236- 37)

Earlier, Eleanor has revealed that the source of her jealousy is her homeliness. Angrily and plaintively, she compares herself with Rosamond:

Sweet stature hath she and fair eyes, men say;
I am but black, with hair that keeps the braid,[40/41]
And my face hurt and bitten of the sun
Past medicine of all waters. (Tragedies, I, 245)

Nonetheless, feelings of jealousy are mutual. Throughout the play Rosamond schizophrenically alternates between vanity and insecurity. Since she values herself exclusively for her beauty, she needs a man continually to reinforce her self-esteem, as does every courtly lady. She nourishes her vanity by goading the king to denigrate his queen:

As you are king, sir, tell me without shame
Doth not your queen share praise with you, show best
In all crowned ways even as you do? I have heard
Men praise the state in her and the great shape. (Tragedies, I, 260)

That Henry can describe Eleanor coldly as “A Frenchwoman, black-haired and with grey lips / And fingers like a hawk’s cut claw” (Tragedies, I, 261) explains Eleanor’s rabid antagonism toward Rosamond. In the play’s aesthetic theology, ugliness is equivalent to damnation, and Henry’s adulterous relations with so beautiful a mistress as Rosamond entirely undermine the queen’s pride and reputation.

Rosamond and Eleanor both need courtly praise and devotion, because the love that beauty inspires is their supreme value. Beauty not only assures love, it assures immortality: “Love’s signet-brand stamps through the gold o’ the years” (Tragedies, I, 238). In Scene I, Rosamond articulates the courtly apotheosis of love upon which the whole action of the play depends. Here, as always, a life of love assures salvation. It is the one crucial sacrament:

God has no plague so perilous as love,
And no such honey for the lips of Christ
To purge them clean of gall and sweet for heaven.
It was to fit the naked limbs of love
He wrought and clothed the world with ordinance.
Yea let no wiser woman hear me say
I think that whoso shall unclothe his soul
Of all soft raiment coloured custom weaves,
And choose before the cushion-work of looms
Stones rough at edge to stab the tender side,
Put honour off and patience and respect
And veils and relics of remote esteem
To turn quite bare into large arms of love,[41/42]
God loves him better than those bitter fools
Whom ignorance makes clean, and bloodless use
Keeps colder than their dreams. (Tragedies, I, 238)

Rosamond’s emphasis here on the transcendent value of passion that defies convention and her earlier emphasis on the power of beauty that defies mortality are reminiscent of two arguments implicitly proferred in Morris’ “The Defence of Guenevere,” composed at about the same time as Swinburne began the first draft of Rosamond (see Jeunesse, I, 235-36). But Guenevere’s values are more strained and tentative than Rosamond’s. Of even greater importance in differentiating Morris’ attempt at a sternly realistic adaptation of medievalist amatory and religious values and Swinburne’s iconoclastic recasting of them, however, is that Guenevere pathetically capitulates in “King Arthur’s Tomb,” her monologue’s companion piece, to conventional religious orthodoxies, as Swinburne’s medievalist heroines and heroes often refuse to do.

In the passage from Rosamond quoted earlier, we discover the first lengthy formulation of Swinburne’s consistently fatalistic “religion” of love and beauty, which “makes the daily flesh an altar-cup / To carry tears and rarest blood within / And touch pained lips with feast of sacramant” (Tragedies, I, 239). Indeed, in this play as elsewhere in Swinburne’s poetry, the experience of passion temporarily becomes a kind of religious ecstasy. The oblivion it engenders, however, simulates death. In a sad and loving mood, after singing a Swinburnean imitation of a sorrowful troubadour lyric, Rosamond ends Scene III with this plea to Henry:

Yea, kiss me one strong kiss out of your heart,
Do not kiss more; I love you with my lips,
My eyes and heart, your love is in my blood,
I shall die merely if you hold to me. (Tragedies, I, 265)

The hyperbole of this last line is typical of courtly rhetoric. Further, Rosamond’s postponement of carnal satisfaction, and her demand for a single kiss, reflects an “orthodox” courtly love convention in which the degree of restraint a lover feels compelled to employ is merely a measure of promised bliss and present woe, the mixed pain and pleasure of passion. [42/43]

With Rosamond it is not so much the intensity of insatiable love as the fear of forfeiting her beauty and, consequently, her lover’s praise that makes her desire death. Although she is terrified and cowardly when actually confronted by Eleanor, Rosamond opens the play’s last scene with a weary and sorrowful soliloquy in which she ponders the ugliness age is sure to bring, and because of that inevitability, she prays, “God . . . / get me broken quickly.” Finally she meets death as a succedaneum and is consoled to die with her beauty and Henry’s love undiminished: “To die grown old were sad, but I die worth / Being kissed of you” (Tragedies, I, 287). It is appropriate that the heroine should end this play receiving the traditional kiss or consolamentum of courtly love, for Swinburne has produced in Rosamond an only slightly modified- that is, sensualized-recapitulation of what he perceived to be the essential values and basic conventions of medieval love literature.

Chastelard reflects the same adherence to the courtly love ethos as does Rosamond. However, Swinburne’s religion of love by 1865 contained Sadean elements with which the poet was unacquainted five years before. In Chastelard we find the ideals of Rosamond sensationalized with a graphic carnal awareness. Moreover, the desire for death as love’s supreme consummation had become more than a convention. By 1865, Swinburne’s own mythology of passion had subsumed the ideology of medieval love literature that had earlier inspired his work. The reciprocal influences of London life and Swinburne’s own artistic experiments of the early 1860s are reflected in a play that crystallizes Pre-Raphaelite, Sadean, and courtly love influences. But in it, historically empty conventions of courtly love are presented dramatically as earnest and moving solutions to the problem of human passion.

Chastelard constitutes an even more convincing transposition of courtly love values than does Rosamond, partly because of Swinburne’s improved dramatic technique and partly because of his ability to write more vigorous verse, but primarily because of an ostensibly deeper personal involvement in the emotional issues that the play dramatizes. Although Chastelard was not published until 1865, it was — as Georges Lafourcade plausibly asserts — the focus of Swinburne’s [43/44] attention immediately after, if not simultaneously with, “The Triumph of Time,” his own elegy on the loss through marriage of Mary Gordon. We know, however, by Swinburne’s own assertion, that Chastelard was first conceived and begun in 1859 or 1860 and that it went through numerous revisions (Letters, II, 235). Following Rosamond so closely, early drafts of Chastelard perhaps laid more stress on Swinburne’s unsophisticated acceptance of courtly love ideals than the final version does. The play’s hero, who describes Ronsard as “The sweet chief poet, my dear friend long since” and as “my old lord” (Tragedies, II, 139), not only espouses courtly love values but acts them out in his life. Whether additions to the original version of Chastelard resulted from Swinburne’s disappointment with Mary Gordon, as “The Triumph of Time” is assumed to have done, or simply from a more epic conception of his evolving mythology of insatiable passion, Chastelard in its final form is a palpable and artistically successful reflection of Swinburne’s ethos of love. Dramatic tension in the play is generated almost exclusively by the dynamic and suicidal passion of the hero for the dark and capricious heroine.

Chastelard is depicted from the start as a warrior-poet who is also Mary Stuart’s courtier and lover. Lafourcade has pointed out the play’s biographical significance: Swinburne’s identification with the ideals that Chastelard embodies is transparent. The poet’s most important early critic remarks that Swinburne

crée, comme Dieu, à son image. . . . Chastelard est poète comme Swinburne; et ce dernier ne manque pas de lui donner l’auréole qu’il avait, adolescent, ambitionnée: celle des armes et de la gloire militaire; il mêle ses rêves de Mary à des visions de bataille.

[Swinburne] created, like God, after his own image ….Chastelard is a poet, like Swinburne; and he did not neglect to give Chastelard the aura which he himself had, as an ambitious adolescent; the aura of arms and military glory; he mixes his dreams of Mary with his vision of battle. [Jeunesse, 280]

Lafourcade does not perceive, however, that all the attributes with which Swinburne invests Chastelard belong also traditionally to the [44/45] troubadours and their successors. Chastelard is represented in the play as a sixteenth-century trouvère whose devotion to the ideal of his love is fanatically orthodox. When the object of his passion proves inaccessible and viciously changeable, his commitment to the ideal supersedes his passion for the beloved. It becomes a passion for death.

Curtis Dahl has already verified the significance of Swinburne’s use of Ronsard in the play. Chastelard’s “old lord” is the author of the book that Mary in the last act brings to Chastelard’s prison cell and that Chastelard reads as he approaches the block. Indeed, Dahl claims that Swinburne’s conception of Mary Stuart was inspired by a misreading of Ronsard, who was writing about Mary Stuart “in a highly artificial convention of courtly compliment developed in the Middle Ages and raised to a paean to physical love in the early Renaissance.” Dahl accurately observes:

By consciously or unconsciously ignoring the conventional quality of Ronsard’s diction and attitudes toward his beloved mistress, Swinburne transforms what is really graceful and beautiful but not unusual flattery by a court poet to a lovely and unfortunate Queen into characterization of a fabulously seductive, partly historical but largely mythological goddess of aesthetic beauty and cruel passion. Whereas in Ronsard the emphasis on Mary’s many physical charms is conventional cataloguing compliment, Swinburne (whether unknowingly or with conscious literary intention) reads into it an almost morbid eroticism.

Swinburne was aware of the convention Ronsard was working in and deliberately undertook to literalize the courtier-poet’s typical love song-to employ courtly rhetoric and hyperbole in earnest. Mary Stuart is thus transformed by Swinburne into a truly threatening femme fatale, and Chastelard becomes a powerfully realized extension of the representative courtly poet-lover, a literary ideologist with troubadour conditioning.

As a result, the play is punctuated with Swinburnean imitations of sorrowful love lyrics. Mary Beaton appropriately sings one as the play begins, for her futile love of Chastelard represents the sad, steadfast, and ethereal counterpart of Chastelard’s carnal and aesthetic passion for Mary Stuart. Mary Beaton and Mary Stuart both sing his songs in [45/46] the second act, and in the last play of the trilogy that Chastelard begins, Mary Stuart’s fate rests on her being able to recognize the author of a lyric composed years before by Chastelard. As with all Swinburne’s pastiches, the verses attributed to Chastelard in the play are authentic reproductions of conventional courtly love lyrics. But they have special significance here, foreshadowing the play’s action and echoing the imagery used to depict it. For instanre, the last two stanzas of Mary Beaton’s opening song characterize the religious quality as well as the consuming intensity of Chastelard’s love for Mary Stuart, which he sustains to his death and which, in fact, transforms his violent end into the final, sacramental act of his passion:

Et l’amour
C’est ma flamme,
Mon grand jour,
Ma chandelle
Blanche et belle,
Ma chapelle
De séjour.
. . . .
Toi, mon âime
Et ma foi,
Sois ma dame
Et ma loi;
Sois ma mie,
Sois Marie,
Sois ma vie,
Toute à moi! (Tragedies, II,14)

[“Love is my passion, it is my light, my great day, my beautiful white candle, my shrine. You, my soul and my faith, be my lady and my law; be my love, be Marie, be my life, everything to me.”]

The paradox of Chastelard’s passion is that it is at once what he lives for and what kills him. Life without his love is not only futile but equivalent to damnation, and after Mary jealously and spitefully chooses Darnley as her husband, fulfillment is impossible. Yet Chastelard’s devotion is complete and inevitable, wrongheaded as he knows it is. His conditioning apparently does not allow for the caprice of traditional courtly lovers, expected as well as displayed by Mary Stuart.[46/47]

As in Swinburne’s lived mythology, Chastelard is both made and broken by an irretrievable commitment to one love. However, Mary, in spite of her desire to be loved with devotion like Chastelard’s, can honestly yet remorsefully describe her own fickle nature this way:

I would to God You loved me less; I give you all I can
For all this love of yours, and yet I am sure
I shall live out the sorrow of your death
And be glad afterwards. You know I am sorry.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
God made me hard, I think. Alas, you see
I had been fain other than I am. (Tragedies, II, 75)

Thus, with severe irony, Mary can remark upon expected infidelities after singing one of Chastelard’s mutablity lyrics, which, in Swinburne’s usual manner, associates love with roses:

As-tu vu jamais au monde Vénus chasser et courir? Fille de l’onde, avec l’onde Doit-elle mourir? Aux jours de neige et de givre L’amour steffeuille et s’endort; Avec mai doit-il revivre, Ou bien est-il mort? Qui sait où s’en vont les roses? Qui sait où s’en va le vent? En songeant à telles choses, J’ai pleuré souvent. [Tragedies, II, 56]

[Have you ever seen Venus chasing and running? Daughter of the sea, should she die with the sea? “In days of frost and snow love sheds its petals and goes to sleep, with May should it awaken or is it really dead? “Who knows where the roses have gone? Who knows where the wind goes? One dreams of such things. I have often cried.]

The Venus of the first stanza has already been identified in Act I as Mary herself. “A Venus crowned, that eats the hearts of men” (Tragedies, II, 25) is represented on a breastclasp given her by an admiring artist. As a later incarnation of the archetypal femme fatale with whom Rosamond has identified, this beautiful Queen, fearful of death but [47/48] doomed to be beheaded, is, in fact, immortal. “Doit-elle mourir?” in connection with Mary Stuart is a doubly ironic rhetorical question.

The power of Mary Stuart’s beauty makes her, like Rosamond, the eternal object of men’s desires. For Chastelard, as for Swinburne’s earlier courtly lovers, beauty is the supreme and literally captivating attribute of woman. Because of it, he becomes Mary’s suicidal “sweet fool.” To love in irrevocable earnest is Chastelard’s fatal “flaw.” Yet it is a fault that is most easily understood in terms of the erotic aestheticism of Chastelard’s courtly heritage. Even Mary at first cannot fathom the obstinate depths of his devotion to her beauty. Gradually, however, she begins to perceive the passionate spirit of his unique supplication, along with the power it confers upon her:

Though he be mad indeed It is the goodliest madness ever smote Upon man’s heart. A kingly knight-in faith, Meseems my face can yet make faith in men And break their brains with beauty: for a word, An eyelid’s twitch, an eye’s turn, tie them fast And make their souls cleave to me. (Tragedies, II, 115)

Like any religious fanatic, Chastelard appears mad. For him, as for Rosamond, beauty is the chief measure of goodness in the world. In his last moments with Mary, he explains,

You have all the beauty; let mean women’s lips
Be pitiful, and speak truth: they will not be
Such perfect things as yours. Be not ashamed
That hands not made like these that snare men’s souls
Should do men good, give alms, relieve men’s pain;
You have the better, being more fair than they,
They are half foul, being rather good than fair;
You are quite fair: to be quite fair is best. (Tragedies, II,138)

Chastelard is finally vindicated in his worship of a pitiless and capricious beauty not only by the traditional courtly apotheosis of “fairness” but also by the representation of Mary’s beauty as a characteristic ethereally detached from her other attributes. All the play’s major figures at some point remark upon Mary’s superb beauty and intuit its tragic counterpart, cruelty. Mary knows that her beauty is the exclusive cause of men’s attraction to her and of Chastelard’s passion. [48/49] Chastelard confirms the fact when Mary Beaton tries to understand why he loves Mary Stuart so fervently. In response, he catalogs her physical splendors:

She hath fair eyes: may be
I love her for sweet eyes or brows or hair,
For the smooth temples, where God touching her
Made blue with sweeter veins the flower-sweet white;
Or for the tender turning of her wrist,
Or marriage of the eyelid with the cheek;
I cannot tell; or . . . her mouth,
A flower’s lip with a snake’s lip, stinging sweet,
And sweet to sting with: face that one would see
And then fall blind and die with sight of it
Held fast between the eyelids. (Tragedies, II,20)

Chastelard in fact dies because of his inalterable devotion to an ideal of beauty, of which Mary Stuart is a typical incarnation. In the mythology of this play, as in Rosamond, coalescence with the ideal can be striven for in this world but achieved only in death. His early intuition of some “kindling beyond death / Of some new joys” inspires Chastelard’s last hour. In fact, by the time he dies, he has articulated several visions of possible consummations to his passion that death may supply. When in Act III he hides himself in Mary’s chamber and confronts her with the fact that his love is undiminished though obstructed by her marriage to Darnley, he articulates his yearning for a union with Mary of the type craved by Sappho in “Anactoria.” Between frenzied kisses, he threateningly chides,

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The Mournful Wail of The Lost Mothers

Posted on September 26, 2019 by Royal Rosamond Press

For Our Eyes Only


John Presco

Copyright 2019

Victoria Bond chose to take the train to London to see Clive Rougemont. She needed time to think. She deduced she and Miriam Starfish Christling were in deep shit. How deep, was not the question. Victoria wrote this on her yellow legal pad;

“How deep do you want to go!”

That’s when she heard Miriam’s mournful waling that caught up with the whistle of the train at every crossing, proving a mathematical relativity that only her dear lover could fathom. Victoria felt quaking in her throat as she knew her beloved Wild Woman was doing everything she could to keep this question, down;

“Are you going to betray me, my love?”

The heat of her tears began to blur her mission, which was to Deprogram herself.  She took about BAD’s treatment on David Hume’s Guillotine, which was the prescribed moral and logical lifeboat all BAD agents were instructed to use – to the best of their ability. There was no guarantee this lifeboat will save your ass, or, anyone’s ass you might-ought to be considering worth saving.

“A boat, is a boat, is a boat. All boats are the same because they serve three purpouses. 1. They keep the occupant dry. 2. They keep the occupant fro drowining. 3. They get you to and from you destination. Our object is to get other spies to lose tract of what a boat is. If you are not sure you are lost, then, read this……..

In every system of morality, which I have hitherto met with, I have always remarked, that the author proceeds for some time in the ordinary way of reasoning, and establishes the being of a God, or makes observations concerning human affairs; when of a sudden I am surprised to find, that instead of the usual copulations of propositions, is, and is not, I meet with no proposition that is not connected with an ought, or an ought not. This change is imperceptible; but is, however, of the last consequence. For as this ought, or ought not, expresses some new relation or affirmation, ’tis necessary that it should be observed and explained; and at the same time that a reason should be given, for what seems altogether inconceivable, how this new relation can be a deduction from others, which are entirely different from it. But as authors do not commonly use this precaution, I shall presume to recommend it to the readers; and am persuaded, that this small attention would subvert all the vulgar systems of morality, and let us see, that the distinction of vice and virtue is not founded merely on the relations of objects, nor is perceived by reason.”

Miriam’s wail got even louder because she knew her beloved Miriam was reading this paragraph – that she refused to read!

“I would never betray you this way!”

“What way would you betray me?” was Victoria’s comeback. Then she wrote;

“When mothers die young, when their children are young, the greater tears to be shed, are shed by the dead mother, for she has lost them, her beloved souls that were put in her care.”

Victoria studied what she wrote and asked if this was pure Victoria sentiment, or, a valid observation.

“What is the primary and most lingering emotion the children own after losing their mothers?”

Victoria tapped her pen on her lower teeth and gazed at nothing in particular. She thought she saw Miriam running alongside the train, very fast. She was shouting to Victoria.

“What? What are you saying?”

Victoria got up and lowered the window.

“Speak up!”

“The answer is, we all feel guilty. We feel we caused our mother’s death!”

Victoria dropped her yellow pad, and sunk her face in her trembling hands. Where did this answer come from? Is there such a thing as a psychic interenion. Did the fact that she, Miriam and Belle all lost their mothers when they were nine. That’s three nines? Does this have any meaning? If Miriam were here, she would be all over this with he PI ditty.

All of a sudden, Miriam is running alongside the train. She is holding up a large poster-board upon which is written…..

“9+9=18. 1+8=9. 18+9=27. 2+7=9”

Victoria almost fainted. She was not longer blocked to math. Miram had been jamming and cramming her brain with simple match riddles. When she asked why she had not read Hume’s Guilotine, she sad.

“He is fucking with my parents Russian Fairytales and the Secret Math they found that applies to them. This is why it is important we find Queen Victoria’s lost library. I suspect it is full of Fairytales that have not see the light of day for a hundred years – at least!”

Of course, a boat is not a boat – when it is a Fairytale. Now, Victoria owned the real picture of what Miriam is doing, she is stalking about Osborne House looking for Fairytale Library.

“The is hope for us – yet!” Victoria wrote. And, she put her notepad away.

I will no longer be using photographs of living people for my book. I decided twenty minute ago to use Pre-Raphaelite painting. I found the perfect image for Victoria Serena Bond. I then found this…My Winged Muses are on my side, and are my friends. I can do not wrong.

I am driving over a cliff in depicting Lesbian Lovers as spies. I made no study on this. The typical Bond plot, has James getting good reasons to kill a man or ten after chasing him down. Only then is he rewarded with sexual intercourse from a woman. I want to add – what are we fighting and dying for? Any oaf can be loyal to his country for almost any damn reason. Are men and women loay to one another – like they used to be?

I was in a line at my pharmisist listening to a father and his son argue about Gamer Rules. This beautiful boy, about nine, was making a point about characters being brought back to life, and his father was saying his reasoning was not sound. I had bee working on and important aspect of my book, and begged to ask them a question. The father’s phone rang and he said;

“My son will answer your question.”

There we were at Wal-Mart pharmacy talking about a plot for a James Bond movies. I was so impressed with this sophisticated human being who had so many answers. He is the male version of Victoria – and Miriam. I better now my stuff. I just found this……This is a mother! What as son! What a father! Harry’s loyalty to Meghan is exemplary! Mission accomplished! Well done!

Talk: Pre-Raphaelite Women Artists And The Isle of Wight

Interested in art? Why not head to this talk tomorrow (Saturday) night at Dimbola about Pre-Raphaelite Women Artists And The Isle of Wight.

Be the first to add your thoughts in the comments section ↓

If you’re looking for something different to do tomorrow (Saturday) evening why not head to Dimbola Museum and Galleries.

Pre-raphaelite woman:Vaguely Sunny in association with the Julia Margaret Cameron Trust are hosting a lecture by the highly-respected writer Dr Jan Marsh.

Dr Marsh will be discussing the Pre-Raphaelite Women Artists and their connection to the Isle of Wight

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About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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