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Gilgamesh inspired ...

Many times a week, I walk by the Irish Hunger Memorial, and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in downtown Manhattan.

Both are extraordinarily successful memorials and both incorporate innovative use of text. They are emotionally moving, visually captivating, and literally tell the story of the memorial and the experiences they commemorate.

I began to think about how memorials stand in memory, in literature, and in our cities. How the great walls of Uruk were a memorial to Gilgamesh, and were memorialized as such in the text itself.

What follows in the link at the end of this post is a brief response to, and a free association between Gilgamesh and images of these two contemporary memorials in our very own city.

These images are inspired by the lines of Gilgamesh which reference the walls of Uruk in the opening and closing sections of the edited poem. This most ancient literary work keeps referencing writing itself.

You will find a few of the images, with sections of text from Gilgamesh at this page:

memorial wall: Gilgamesh & NYC

Miscellaneous Gilgamesh

So, here are some miscellanies following our discussions of Gilgamesh. 

Langdon (includes transliteration and tablets, scroll down):

Walls of Uruk (a couple of good photos, ignore the ads):

Uruk (some maps, historical, sociological, and bibliographical material):


Picard (for you Trekkies, from one of the best episodes):

Newly discovered lines:

Sound of the Akkadian poetry:


Rumi selections

For our upcoming session on Rumi, we will concentrate on poems from the sections below. If you have a favorite from another section that you would like included in our discussion, please let me know!

References are to The Rumi Collection, ed. Kabir Helminski (Shambhala 2005)

1. Working with Our Humanness

3. Awe, Naked Wonder

4. The Inner Work

8. Signs That Speak

13. Boiling the Chickpeas

14. The Complete Human

16. Love is the Cause