The uncovering of an ancient gold mask in China has caused a few ripples on Weibo, so Coco thought he would join in the activity. However as he does not have a Weibo account, and probably would no longer have one after this post anyway so it makes little difference, the post had to be made elsewhere, and out of respect for anyone who may read this and wishes to retain their own Weibo account, placed his images else where.

For the triptych ‘Behind every smiling face’ please visit Acklam Hall and follow the link to the Chinese mask. You may also follow the other links (not all appear as such), but beware lest you see what you should not see.

Weibo/Sanxingdui Museum

Flea slaves

It seemed to be an ordinary sort of day, the kind of day when the sun shines, the bees buzz and the lilac blossom falls gently on the ground. Passing a house where several cats make their home, the slave came out angrily spraying a can of noxious vapours at anything that moved. It seemed that the cats had introduced some unwanted guests into their home and the slave was determined to remove them.

Coco watched in astonishment as three free fleas fled.


Further to the mysteries of a past day, Coco read* today ‘that a great and worthy twentieth century’ Irish poet ‘declined to produce a translation of’ Beowulf ‘because it was considered that someone of a different enthnicity, genre and mother tongue’, not to mention culture, to the Old English author ‘could not accurately reflect and interpret’ this great poetry.

For the real story of Beowulf he refers you to Professor Heather O’Donoghue, here and to her book…

Coco is now on the search for an original ancient Greek to labour afresh in the translation of the poetry of [place here the name of your favourite ancient Greek author] but in the words of one Latin translator slightly paraphrased: Don’t worry too much about your pronunciation there are no Romans about today to correct you, and in the Bowdlerised words of a Renaissance writer: My attempt for Greek’s labour to find is vain, for I who myself have deceivèd shall fail.

* The catastrophic and apostrophic additions and amendment in Coco’s first paragraph have been added for clarity.

Why a white poet did not translate Amanda Gorman
When a white Dutch author was chosen to translate Gorman’s work the decision was swiftly reversed

The heightening of ‘the debate in the Netherlands over the ethics of translation’ probably suggests that the Dutch are expected to read every other language in the original tongue. Given their outstanding ability to speak English, as no true born Englishman can, Coco has no doubt that that every true born Dutchman will rise to the challenge to drive metaphorically the illiterati into the abyss of darkness otherwise known as the North Sea, as they consume with an avarice insatiable for other tongues unknown since the day of Babel.