The Reconversion of the Hagia Sophia

Heaven on Earth “And we went into the Greek lands, and we were led into a place where they serve their God, and we did not know where we were, on heaven or on earth; and do not know how to tell about this. All we know is that God lives there with people and…

Stalking Beatrice

A Short-Story in Verse   The Timeless Meets the Timely   The shadow of eternity falls painfully On the moment that craves immortality. Memories fortified into cold marble Cast a pall of nascent experiences Seeking to shed their wind-starved wings. The Timeless gods so unfamiliar yet intimate Are a forest, labyrinthine and unkind, That guide…

The Romantic in the Age of Enlightenment

  The Romantic, that great 18th century, European invention, was born out of a guttural distaste for Enlightenment notions of science and rationalism. Romanticism was a disavowal of the modern world and its underlying values in favour of a nostalgic return to a naturalistic, beauteous past. An artistic revolt against the Industrial Revolution and its…

The ‘But’ of Beauty

      Have you ever been confronted with an artwork widely considered to be a masterpiece – say Van Gogh’s Sunflowers – and found yourself thinking, ‘it’s good, yeah, but…?’ That ‘but’ signifies a lack of connection; you can see the painting is beautiful, but you’re not wowed by it. You might even guilty,…

Why I Love Japanese Literature

  Literature, just as porn, is a reflection of a nation’s identity. Whilst porn reflects a certain truthful stereotype – the harsh, blonde German woman, the sultry French girl, the busty, flashy American, big-assed Brazilian, etc – literature reflects a more profound way a nation sees the world. In France, the literature is philosophical, erotic…

Cassandra’s Poems

  Kronos Eclipsed   My father used to tell me stories About the atrocious gods Who devoured their own children. I always used to believe The stories foretold my own destiny.   I don’t believe in gods anymore, Nor in the impossible tracks of destiny. I don’t even believe in my father. I believe in…

Beauty and Madness (And a Handful of Poems)

Update: The first draft of Beauty and Madness is complete. The second novel in my Beauty series is now into the editing stage. The next novel in this series will be written in Lisbon this summer and until the time comes I will be writing a book of poems using the pen and the words…

Cassandra’s Book of Poems

A series of poems written by Cassandra, main character of my novel Beauty and Freedom, after the end of the novel. For those interested in reading the novel and to read the story of the author of these poems, follow the link to Amazon here.       Beauty and Poetry   Life has no meaning;…

Top 8 Quotes From Beauty and Freedom

It is every novelist’s wet-dream to have his characters take control of a story and watches them helplessly running away with it. That is what happened with me with the characters of Beauty and Freedom – a literary novel about star-crossed lovers set in Budapest.   Christopher and Cassandra, the novel’s only two characters, have…

The Exile

The plaster peeling off the walls in the Alfama looked like a weeping woman’s running mascara. Trams shunted past like the sound of endless rows of slot machines. From yawning windows old women peered outside like gargoyles, their skin as mat and tired as the faded azulejos. Joaquim drank his fourth shot of ginjinha and…