Notes to Poem:

Peter Y. Chou

Preface: There is a giant eucalyptus tree opposite my apartment in Mountain View. In March 2010, an image of "Cat in the Tree" appeared when I opened my Venetian blinds each morning. I took a photo so it may inspire a cat poem, the way "Mother Bird in the Wild Branches" came to me on October 10, 2009 (Notes). On April 11, 2011 a giant yellow truck came by my apartment to trim the eucalyptus tree (see photos). After their trimmings, those Cat Eyes were still visible, although the cat's face was shaved considerably. A friend sent a cat video of "I am Maru" (3-14-2011), not knowing about this poem. I began collecting cat quotes and cat symbolism. Images of cats appeared on sidewalks, in clouds, films, paintings and poetry. When a white cat leaped on a backyard fence (7-2-2011) "Cat in the Tree" poem was finally finished on July 4, 2011, with Notes compiled a week later.

Commentary on Poem "Cat in the Tree":

Meow! Meow! A black cat wakes me up
in the morning from my dream of night
when I open the window blinds, his eyes
dart forth like arrows from another world.

(Image of cat eyes in eucalyptus tree,
Found lost photograph of "Cat in the Tree" taken from my apartment window in recovered USB drive (3-18-2011). It dawned upon me that "Meow" is an anagram for "We Om". The Om chant is sacred in Hinduism and Buddhism and symbolizes Brahman or the Absolute. Om is the primordial sound, first breath of creation, the vibration that ensures existence. Om sign signifies God, Creation, & the Oneness of all creation. Perhaps the cat's meow is invoking the divine or supernatural realms. No wonder ancient Egyptians regarded the cat as sacred and worship Bast, the cat-headed moon goddess (see James Joyce's remarks about cats below). The Mundaka Upanishad (II.2.4) links the bow with Om: "Om is the bow; the Atman is the arrow; Brahman is the mark. It is to be struck by an undisturbed mind. Then the Atman becomes one with Brahman, as the arrow with the target." If Cat's Meow is Om (bow), and Cat's Eyes are arrows (Soul), we have Awakening of the Soul by Ibn Tufail (1105-1185). Venetian blind is a window shutter that keeps out the light. "Blind" is also an adjective meaning "sightless". Opening the window blinds allows one to see outward, as if sight is restored to the blind person (See Allen Ginsberg's Howl below). Having Cat Eyes staring back can transport one into another world (See William Henry on Stargates below).

like Bast the cat-headed moon goddess / or those cats drawing Freyja's chariot.

Bast, Cat-Headed
Egyptian Goddess
With its fixity of gaze, the cat symbolized watchfulness to the Egyptians. It stood for Bast, the cat-headed moon goddess, who coldly and calmly surveyed the doings of men and beast. [Bast has been dated to 2890-2686 BC, depicted on temple walls as a woman with head of a cat, lion, or large desert cat. Bast became associated with the domestic cat around 1000 BC. The Norse Goddess Freyja is associated with love, beauty, fertility, gold, war, and death. She rules over her heavenly afterlife field Fólkvangr. Freyja shakes apple tree for a good harvest to sustain life. Freyja is often depicted riding her golden chariot through the skies, the chariot pulled by two large blue cats who were a gift from the Norse god Thor. Russian Folk Tale of Cat Bayun (Images: Bast from Cats Page, Fontana's Secret Language of Symbols, p. 85; Goddess Freyja Driving Cat Chariot,
Norse Goddess Freyja with
Cat-drawn Chariot

Cat's Eye stones make wearers invisible / and black cats perform spells for witches.

Cat's Eye Stone

Witch & cat on broom

Cat's eye stone is a chrysoberyl with its narrow, bright band of light on a shimmering golden background, which seems to glide magically across the surface when the stone is moved. This mineral consists of chatoyant quartz, a translucent variety with inclusions of some other fibrous mineral capable of reflecting light in the characteristic straight ray resembling the slit pupil of a cat. Chrysoberyls (Greek: gold-colored beryls) are aluminium oxide containing beryllium. According to medieval legend, the cat's eye is a talisman possessing the supernatural power to make its wearer invisible. It wards off evil spirits, protects against financial ruin, cures eye ailments and chronic diseases.
    Black cats, owls, bats, and broomsticks were the familiar spirits and tools commonly associated with witches, who retained a dominant position in the Feast of the Dead. Black animals were suspected of harboring demons, since black was the color of underworld. That is why the popular image of a witch is attended by a black cat. (Images: Cat's eye stone,; Witch & cat on broom,, with arm added in Photoshop)

Old mouse asked "Who's to bell the cat?"— / Cat that in the corner dwells.
"Belling the Cat" is from Aesop's Fable (circa 550 BC)— "Who is to bell the Cat? It is easy to propose impossible remedies." Also known as"The Bell and the Cat" and "The Mice in Council". The Fable concerns a group of mice who debate plans to nullify the threat of a marauding cat. One of them proposes placing a bell around its neck, so that they are warned of its approach. Others applaud the plan, until one mouse asks who will place the bell on the cat. All then make excuses. The story is used to teach the wisdom of evaluating a plan not only on how desirable the outcome would be, but also on how it can be executed. "Cat that in the corner dwells" is from the third stanza of Emily Dickinson's Poem 1185: "A little Dog that wags his tail"— "The Cat that in the Corner dwells / Her martial Day forgot / The Mouse but a Tradition now / Of her desireless Lot" (Image: Gustave Doré's Belling the Cat in Fontaine's Fables,

Where is the Cat with nine lives / with seven kits going to St. Ives?
Cat with nine lives cited in literary works:
It has been the providence of Nature
to give this cat nine lives instead of one.

— Bidpai or Pilpay (circa 326 BC),
    Fable 3: The Greedy and Ambitious Cat
A woman hath nine lives like a cat.
— John Heywood (1497-1580),
    Proverbes (1546), II.4
One of the most striking differences between a cat
and a lie is that a cat has only nine lives.

— Mark Twain (1835-1910),
    Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar, Ch. 7 (1894)
"Seven kits going to St. Ives" is from
Mother Goose Rhyme "As I was going to St. Ives":
As I was going to St. Ives,
I met a man with seven wives;
Every wife had seven sacks,
Every sack had seven cats,
Every cat had seven kits;
Kits, cats, sacks, and wives,
How many were there going to St. Ives?

— William S. Baring-Gould & Ceil Baring-Gould,
The Annotated Mother Goose (1962), #678, p. 270
(Image: Going to St. Ives Poster,

Artists cat-lovers: Renoir, Dali, Warhol, / Steinlen, Carrington, and Peter Milton.

Pierre-Auguste Renoir
Self-Portrait (1910)

Woman with a Cat (1875)
National Gallery of Art

Julie Manet with Cat (1887)
Musée d'Orsay, Paris

Girl and Cat (1882)
Private Collection
(Images: Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919), Cat Paintings by Renoir,

Dali & Cat (1965)
Roger Higgins Photo
Salvador Dali (1904-1989) was a Spanish Catalan surrealist painter. Philippe Halsman's photograph Dali Atomicus (1948) shows an artist's easel, three cats, bucket of water, and Dali himself floating in the air. Two Dali paintings (Leda Atomica was one), stepping stool, and chair are also in the photo. On count of three, his assistants threw three cats and a bucket of water into the air. On count of four, Dali jumped and Halsman snapped the picture. "Six hours and twenty-eight throws later, the result satisfied my striving for perfection," wrote Halsman in his book Halsman on the Creation of Photographic Ideas. The surreal and hysterical photograph was immediately given a two-page spread in 1948 LIFE magazine. (Halsman's Jump, Smithsonian article), Halsman's Jump Book (1959).
Philippe Halsman (1906-1979)
Dali Atomicus (1948)
(Images: Dali & Cat,; Dali Atomicus,

Andy Warhol

Blue Cat (1954)

Purple Sam (1954)

So Happy (1958)
(Images: Andy Warhol (1928-1987),; Andy Warhol: Cat Paintings,

Théophile Steinlen

Des Chats (1898)

It Burns! (1898)

Cat & Fishbowl (1898)
(Images: Théophile Steinlen (1859-1923),; It Burns, Awful End of a Goldfish,
Théophile Steinlen (1859-1923) was a Swiss-born French Art Noveau painter and printmaker. Steinlen's home in Montmartre and its environs was a favorite subject throughout his life. Steinlen loved cats and made many drawings and sculptures of them. I found Steinlen Cats (Dover, 1980) in the Stanford Art Library (NC248.S7.A4.1980). After seeing "Cat and Fishbowl" from Des Chats (1898) that was included in "Awful End of a Goldfish", it seems likely that "It Burns!" also came from this same book.

Leonora Carrington
Leonora Carrington (1917-2011) was a British-born Mexican artist, surrealist painter and novelist. At age 20, she met the 46-years old Max Ernst at a London party in 1937. They bonded and returned together to Paris where Ernst promptly separated from his wife. After Ernst's arrest by the Nazis, Carrington fled to Spain. She moved to Mexico and married poet Emericko Weisz. Her Irish grandmother initiated Leonora into the world of white magic— cult of the Druids, where she found her spiritual home. In her surrealistic painting Tuesday, a white stag leaps out from an aquatic garden. At right, the angelic figure in floral clamshell carries three cats in the moonlight.
Leonora Carrington, Tuesday (1946)
(Images: Leonora Carrington & cat,; Tuesday, Egg tempera on panel,

Peter Milton with his cat
The Primacy of Touch (1993)

Peter Milton: Detail, Interiors II:
Stolen Moments

Cat Man & Himalayan Cat
Les Belles et La Bête I (1977)
(Images: Peter Milton (born 1930),; Peter Milton: Cats in his Artworks,
On my third viewing of Peter Milton's Interiors VI: Soundings (1989), I discovered a cat under Colette's table gazing at the fish tank. Looking through three Peter Milton books in Stanford's Art Library, 15 cats were found in ten of his artworks. Details of these cats were scanned with links to Peter Milton's web site. They are listed in Peter Milton: Cats in his Artworks.

Cat-loving writers: Colette, Cocteau, / Dr. Seuss and Edgar Allan Poe.

Colette and her cat in the Palais-Royal arcade.
Judith Thurman, Secrets of the Flesh:
A Life of Colette
Colette (1873-1954) was a prolific French fiction writer with around 50 novels published. Her writing is marked by clever observation and dialogue with an intimate, explicit style. Her most famous novel Gigi (1944) was made into a Vincente Minnelli film musical (1958) that won ten Academy Awards. Colette picked Audrey Hepburn for the 1951 Broadway play on Gigi. A cat becomes Audrey Hepburn's companion in Breakfast at Tiffany (1961). Colette quote: "Time spent with cats is never wasted." Colette bought a pearl gray Chartreuse at a cat show in 1926 (Secrets of the Flesh: A Life of Colette, 1999, pp. 396-397), and wrote a novel La Chatte (The Cat) in 1933 (Book review "Colette and a Cat" in NY Times, August 9, 1936). Her friend Jean Cocteau, artist, poet, filmmaker, and later neighbor in Jardins du Palais-Royal, was also a cat lover.
Colette & her cats (1939)
Francis & Gontier,
Creating Colette (1999)
(Images: Colette & cats, Colette & cats,

Jean Cocteau and his cat
Jean Cocteau (1889-1963) was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, boxing manager, playwright, artist and filmmaker. His circle of associates, friends and lovers included Kenneth Anger, Pablo Picasso, Jean Hugo, Jean Marais, Henri Bernstein, Marlene Dietrich, Coco Chanel, Erik Satie, María Félix, Édith Piaf, and Raymond Radiguet. Cocteau is best known for his 1929 novel Les enfants terribles, and 1946 film Beauty and the Beast. Famous quotes: "I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul" and "A meow massages the heart". He dedicated Drôle de Ménage to his cat Karoun, whom he described as "the king of cats."
Cocteau's Cat Logo
(Images: Jean Cocteau & cat,; Cocteau's cat logo,

Dr. Seuss
Dr. Seuss, pen name of Theodor Seuss Geisel (1904-1991), was an American writer, poet, and cartoonist most widely known for his 46 children's books. They were often characterized by imaginative characters, rhyme, and frequent use of trisyllabic meter. The Cat in the Hat is perhaps his most famous, featuring a tall, anthropomorphic, mischievous cat, wearing a tall, red and white-striped hat and a red bow tie. He also carries a pale blue umbrella. The Cat performs all sorts of wacky tricks— the Cat at one point balances a teacup, some milk, a cake, three books, the Fish, a rake, a toy boat, a toy man, a red fan, and his umbrella while he's on a ball to the chagrin of the fish— to amuse the children. The book sold over 11 million copies.
Cat in the Hat (1957)
(Images: Dr. Seuss,; The Cat in the Hat,

Edgar Allan Poe
Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) was an American author, poet, editor and literary critic. Best known for his tales of mystery and the macabre, Poe was one of the earliest American practitioners of the short story and is considered the inventor of the detective fiction genre. Poe used cats as symbols of the sinister in several of his stories, although he himself owned and loved cats. His tortoiseshell cat Catarina was the inspiration for his story "The Black Cat". At the beginning of the tale, Poe says he would be "mad indeed" if he should expect a reader to believe the story, implying that he has already been accused of madness. In this story, the Black Cat helps solves the murder mystery. Poe's use of the black cat evokes various superstitions, including the idea voiced by the narrator's wife that they are all witches in disguise. The titular cat is named Pluto after the Roman god of the Underworld. In winter 1846, Catarina, a house cat, would curl up on the bed with Poe's wife, who was dying of tuberculosis, and provide warmth.
"Black Cat" (1843)
(Images: Edgar Allan Poe postage stamp,; Aubrey Beardsley's Poe's "Black Cat",

After seeing Egyptian cat statues / in the British Museum, James Joyce said
the ancients had more religious awe than / Christians who had no cats in their Bible.
James Joyce told his friend David Powers "Whenever I walked through the British Museum, I was always impressed by the Assyrian and Egyptian monuments... and those Egyptian figures of birds and cats. It always occurred to me that both the Assyrians and the Egyptians understood better than we do the mystery of animal life, a mystery which Christianity has almost ignored, preoccupied as it is with man, and only regarding animals as the servants of man, I cannot remember at the moment a sympathetic mention of a dog or a cat in the New Testament... Indeed since the advent of Christianity we seem to have lost our sense of proportion, for too great stress is laid on man, 'man made in the image of God', and I think that the Babylonian star-worshipper had a greater sense of religious awe than we have." [Arthur Power, Conversations with James Joyce (1974), p. 48]. We find in Joyce's Ulysses (1922) page 55: "good cup of tea, the cat mewed in answer". A concordance search in the Bible showed no results for cat in the Old and New Testaments. Cat is cited 37 times in James Joyce's Ulysses and 27 times in Finnegans Wake (3 Cat, 12 cat, 8 cat's 3 cats, 1 catseye). (Images: Egyptian Cat Bast,

I'm seeing cats everywhere— in films,

Cat People (1942)

Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)

Footlight Parade (1958)
(Images: Cat People,; Breakfast at Tiffany's,; Cats in Footlight Parade,
I saw the horror classic Cat People (1942) directed by Jacques Tourneur and produced by Val Lewton at the Stanford Theatre (February 9, 2007). It inspired me to write a poem on this film relating it to Rainer Maria Rilke's "Panther" poem for Robert Pinsky's Stanford Workshop (2-14-2007). On July 1, 2008, I watched Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961) where Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn) has a cat for her companion. The film's climax shows Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard searching for the cat in the rain. They renewed their love after finding the cat. On July 3, 2011, I watched Footlight Parade (1933) where one of the Busby Berkeley dance numbers is "Cats". Chester Kent (James Cagney) tries to be innovative in producing musical dance numbers for movie theaters before the main feature is shown. He tells his dance director to imitate a cat's motions and has all dancers dressed up as cats in their makeups. This sequence inspired Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Cats (1981-2000).

paintings, poems, sidewalk drawings,

Cats (2011)
by Nell Van Noppen

Cesare Pavese: "Cats Will Know"
translated by Geoffrey Brock

Sidewalk Drawings
Mountain View

Sidewalk Cat Chalk Drawings
Ortega Ave, Mountain View
On May 3, 2011 at Stanford Annenberg Auditorium, I watched a special screening of Howl starring James Franco as Allen Ginsberg. Directors Rob Epstein & Jeffrey Friedman had a Q&A session after the film that was insightful. Afterwards I walked up to the main lobby of Cummings Art Building and saw a giant painting of "Cats" by Stanford student Nell Van Noppen. Next to the painting was Cesare Pavese's poem "The Cats Will Know"— "The cats will know, / face of springtime; / and the light rain / and the hyacinth dawn..." On Memorial Day (May 30, 2011) I was walking on Ortega Avenue in Mountain View to catch Bus #22 on El Camino on my way to Stanford. Seeing children chalk drawings of cats on the sidewalk, I stopped to take photos of them. (Images: Cats, Cesare Pavese, Sidewalk Cat Drawings,

clouds, on top a backyard fence, and / on the Stanford computer I log on!

Image of White Cat Cloud

White Cat on Backyard Fence

Stanford Computer, Classics Room
(Images: White Cat Cloud, White Cat on Backyard Fence, Cat Image Log In on Stanford Computer Classic Room of Green Library,
On walks around Stanford and Foothill College, I've taken many photos of clouds and noticed cat images in several of them. There are no pets allowed in my apartment complex in Mountain View. On July 2, 2011, I noticed a white cat leaping on the neighbor's backyard fence. He didn't make it to the top but had his claws into the wood. On his next leap, he made it to the top and glanced at me. I told him to wait and rushed back to my apartment for my camera. When I returned, the cat was sitting majestically and I got a good photo of him. Later I realized that above this fence is the eucalyptus tree with the Cat Eyes image which inspired this poem. I have access to the Mac computer in the Classics Reading Room of Stanford Green Library since 2001. Several years later, I noticed that there is a cat next to "classics user" I click on each time while logging on the computer.

Is Schroedinger's cat dead or alive?
Schrödinger's Cat is a thought experiment, often described as a paradox, devised by Austrian physicist Erwin Schrödinger in 1935. It illustrates what he saw as the problem of the Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum mechanics applied to everyday objects. The thought experiment presents a cat that might be alive or dead, depending on an earlier random event. While developing this experiment, he coined the term entanglement. Thought Experiment: A cat is placed in a box, together with a radioactive atom. If the atom decays, and the geiger-counter detects an alpha particle, the hammer hits a flask of hydrogen cyanide (HCN), killing the cat. The paradox lies in the clever coupling of quantum and classical domains. Before the observer opens the box, the cat's fate is tied to the wave function of the atom, which is itself in a superposition of decayed and undecayed states. Thus, said Schroedinger, the cat must itself be in a superposition of dead and alive states before the observer opens the box, "observes" the cat, and "collapses" its wave function. (Image: Schrödinger's Cat, Confidently Single)

If Joshu was there, he would have lived.
Joshu or Chao Chou (778-897) was a Chinese Zen Master who lived to 120 years of age. He is considered the greatest Zen Master with twelve koans in the Blue Cliff Record and five in the Mumonkan (The Gateless Gate). Joshu is probably best known for the first koan in the Mumonkan: "A monk asked Chao-chou, "Has the dog Buddha-nature or not?" Chao-chou said, "Wu." (Mu or Not). He's also famous for his response to Nansen killing the cat. Mumonkan, Koan 14: Nansen Cuts the Cat in Two: Nansen Osho saw monks of the Eastern and Western halls quarreling over a cat. He held up the cat and said, "If you can give an answer, you will save the cat. If not, I will kill it." No one could answer, and Nansen cut the cat in two. That evening Joshu returned, and Nansen told him of the incident. Joshu took off his sandal, placed it on his head, and walked out. "If you had been there, you would have saved the cat," Nansen remarked. (Image: Zen Master Joshu, Zen Thrown Down)

Ask the Cheshire Cat
The Cheshire Cat is from Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland drawn by John Tenniel (1820-1914) in the 1866 edition. The phrase appeared in A classical dictionary of the vulgar tongue by Francis Grose (2nd Edition, London 1788): "CHESHIRE CAT. He grins like a Cheshire cat; said of any one who shows his teeth and gums in laughing." Lewis Carroll is said to be inspired by the 16th century sandstone carving of a grinning Cheshire Cat on the west wall of St. Willfrid's church tower, Grappenhall, Warrington, Cheshire. Alice encounters the Cheshire Cat in Chapter 6 "Pig and Pepper" at first in the kitchen of the Duchess's house. Later it appears outside on the branches of a tree, where it engages Alice in amusing but sometimes vexing philosophical conversation. The Cheshire Cat then directs Alice to the March Hare's house. He disappears but his grin remains behind to float on its own in the air prompting Alice to remark that she has often seen a cat without a grin but never a grin without a cat. (Image: "Cheshire Cat",

who confounded Alice with those Zen-like questions
Zen-like questions are koans invented by T'ang Dynasty Ch'an Masters.
Illogical to the intellect but solvable by those with intuitive insight.
Alice: "Which way I ought to go from here?"
Cheshire Cat: "That depends a good deal on where you want to get to."
Alice: "I don't much care where so long as I get somewhere."
Cheshire Cat: "Then it doesn't matter which way you go... if you only walk long enough."...
Alice: "But I don't want to go among mad people."
Cheshire Cat: "Oh, you can't help that, we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad."
Alice: "How do you know I'm mad?"
Cheshire Cat: "You must be, or you wouldn't have come here."
(Image: Alice & Cheshire Cat, Life Coaching Institute)

and before she could answer them / he vanished into the tree with
nothing left except for his grin. / Am I in now with a mad cat?

(Image: "Cheshire Cat's Grin", Victorian Web)
Footnote 9 in The Annotated Alice Notes by Martin Gardner (Norton, New York, 2000, pp. 67-68): Compare the Cheshire Cat's remarks with Carroll's diary entry of February 9, 1856: Query: when we are dreaming and, as often happens, have a dim consciousness of the fact and try to wake, do we not say and do things which in waking life would be insane? May we not then sometimes define insanity as an inability to distinguish which is the waking and which the sleeping life? We often dream without the least suspicion of unreality: "Sleep hath its own world", and it is often as lifelike as the other. (Chuang Tzu's "Butterfly Dream")
The Annotated Alice, pp. 67-68: In Plato's Theaetetus 158b-d,
Socrates and Theatetus discuss this topic of madness as follows:
Theatetus: I certainly cannot undertake to argue that madmen or dreamers think truly, when they imagine, some of them that they are gods, and others that they can fly, and are flying in their sleep.
Socrates: Do you see another question which can be raised about these phenomena, notably about dreaming and waking?
Theatetus: What question?
Socrates: A question which I think you must often have heard persons ask: how can you determine whether at this moment we are sleeping, and all our thoughts are a dream; or whether we are awake, and talking to one another in the waking state?
Theatetus: Indeed, Socrates, I do not know how to prove the one any more than the other, for in both cases the facts precisely correspon; and there is no difficulty in supposing that during all this discussion we have been talking to one another in a dream; and when in a dream wew seem to be narrating dreams, the resemblance of the two states is quite astonishing.
Socrates: You see, then, that a doubt about the reality of sense is easily raised, since there may even be a doubt whether we are awake or in a dream. And as our time is equally divided between sleeping and waking, in either sphere of existence the soul contends that the thoughts which are present to our minds at the time are true; and during one half of our lives we affirm the truth of the one, and, during the other half, of the other; and are equally confident of both.
Theatetus: Most true.
Socrates: And may not the same be said of madness and the other disorders? The difference is only that the times are not equal.

Look at those eyes— not just a house cat / but the stare of a panther
In medieval belief after feasting the panther sleeps in a cave for three days. After this period, the panther roars and emits a sweet smelling odour. This odour draws in any creatures who smell it and the cycle begins again. The ancient Greeks believed the panther was one of the favored mounts of the god Dionysus. To North and South America Indians, the Black Panther was endowed with great magic and power. Because it could function so well in so many areas, it became the symbol of mastery over all dimensions. To the Tucano Indians of the Amazon, the panther's roar was the roar of thunder. Thus the Black Panther was the god of darkness and could cause eclipses by swallowing the sun. This reflects the tremendous power inherent within the feminine forces. South American Indians believed that the mirrored eyes of the jaguar were a conduit to the realm of the spirits. Shamans claimed to see the future through a jaguar's eyes. [Irene R. Siegel's Eyes of the Jaguar is one woman's initiatory "journey to the nagual into Incan Shamanism with the totemic power animals of the Four Winds.] (Image: Black Panther,

whose darkness swallows me whole into some stargate—

Apotheosis of George Washington
with Hexagram Star superimposed
(Capitol Dome ceiling stargate?)

The second-generation Milky
Way-style Stargate on Earth
William Henry believes that stargates are portals and gateways to the stars and have been preserved in ancient art and myths. Advanced beings that came from the light of the vastness of the Milky Way, and beyond, did so through these gateways. They left the secrets of a Star-Gate-Way or Gate of Eternity for us to discover. He has explored museums, libraries, and temples all over the world looking for stargates. Some include Isis and Osiris in Denderah, Egypt, Sumerian cylinder seal (2300 BC) of Gilgamesh entering a gate, Egyptian god Sokar stands in gate, Hindu celestial being in gate, and Buddha stupa (Philadelphia Museum of Art). Henry discovered that 180 feet above the floor of U.S. Capitol Rotunda may be a Stargate. The painting on the dome is "The Apotheosis of George Washington" painted by Constantino Brumidi (1852). Apotheosis is a Greek word that means 'to raise to god like stature' or the glorification of a person as an ideal. Indeed, this fresco depicts Washington as a god-man. Henry's book Freedom's Gate shows how the Hexagram Star superimposed on the Capitol Dome painting looks like a Stargate. Meditating on it may transport the viewer through this Stargate into another dimension of cosmic awareness.
    The Stargates, also called the Astria Porta in Ancient and the Chappa'ai in Goa'uld, are a series of devices, built by the Ancients, that create artificial subspace wormholes, allowing for near-instantaneous transportation between two distant points in space. Stargate productions center on the premise of a "Stargate", a ring-shaped device that creates a wormhole enabling personal transportation to complementary devices located cosmic distances away. Under the control of the United States government, the Stargate discovered on Earth is kept a secret from the public. This allows for storylines to present no contradiction between depicted events and reality, an effect compounded by setting Stargate in the present day, and depicting Earth accurately, with any unrealistic technology originating solely from alien civilizations. These extraterrestrial civilizations are typically more pre-industrial than scientifically advanced, and are almost always human. Together, this allows for stories predominated by human interaction in Earth-like environments, an unusual feature for a science fiction franchise focused on exploration of other worlds.
(Images: "Apotheosis of George Washington",; Stargate,

the window opens— O, I see and see!
Stanford had a special screening of the film Howl (2010) on May 3, 2011. Allen Ginsberg (starring James Franco) claimed Part II of "Howl" was inspired by a peyote-induced vision of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel in San Francisco. Going to the Venetian blinds, he explained how opening the window blinds, we see the outside world from inside our room. Ginsberg was referring to line 84 of his Howl: "Moloch whose eyes are a thousand blind windows! (1966 Paris Review; 2010 video) followed by "Moloch whose name is the Mind!" (line 85), "I am a consciousness without a body!... "Light streaming out of the sky!" (line 87), "Heaven which exists and is everywhere about us!" (line 89). *** The line "O, I see and see!" is from James Joyce's 1939 fiction Finnegans Wake (page 563): "From the Cat and Cage. O, I see and see. In the ink of his sweat he will find it yet.". The Cat Eyes from my window have inspired me to see— "Everything is holy! everybody's holy! everywhere is holy! everyday is in eternity! Everyman's an angel!... Holy the supernatural extra brilliant intelligent kindness of the soul!" (Allen Ginsberg, Footnote to Howl, lines 3 & 15). (Image: Open Window,

Note: "Cat in the Tree" photo was taken in March 2010 some 16 months ago. This poem lingered in the back burner until recently— Seeing Howl film and Cats painting at Stanford Cummings Art Building (5-3-2011), Sidewalk cat drawings (5-30-2011), White Cat on backyard fence (7-2-2011) and "Cats" dance in Footlight Parade (7-3-2011) helped to complete this poem (7-4-2011). On July 10, 2011, a neighbor's cat sat by the window under an eucalyptus tree. With Photoshop, I've reconstructed this image.

                                                                    Peter Y. Chou (Mountain View, 7-13-2011)

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P.O. Box 390707, Mountain View, CA 94039
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