Excerpt | The Thing About December

a few girls acting like they were disgusted with the cool lads but you could tell they weren't, really,
and a couple of nervous-looking spastics standing to the side,
like bits of auld watery broccoli beside a plate of steak and chips


ryan, d. (2013) the thing about december.

Excerpt | On Atmospheres

what do we mean when we speak of architectural quality? it is a question i have little difficulty in answering. quality in architecture does not - not to me anyway - mean inclusion in architectural guides or histories of architecture or getting my work into this or that publication. quality architecture to me is when a building manages to move me. 

there are plenty of buildings like that i remember, not done by me, but which have touched me, moved me, given me a sense of relief or helped me in some way. it increases the pleasure of my work when i imagine a certain building being remembered by someone in 25 years' time. perhaps because that was where he kissed his first girlfriend or whatever. to put that in perspective: that quality is far more important to me than the idea that the building will still be mentioned in architectural reference works in 35 years. that's a different level altogether, and one that does not help me to design buildings. that is the first transcendent level in my work: the attempt to conceive of architecture as a human environment. perhaps - and i suppose i'd better admit this - perhaps it has something to do with love. i love architecture. 


zumthor, p. (2006) atmospheres

Excerpt | On Quiet Love

there was a sunlit absence.
the helmeted pump in the yard
heated its iron,
water honeyed

in the slung bucket
and the sun stood
like a griddle cooling
against the wall

of each long afternoon.
So, her hands scuffled
over the bakeboard,
the reddening stove

sent its plaque of heat
against her where she stood
in a floury apron
by the window.

now she dusts the board
with a goose's wing,
now sits, broad-lapped,
with whitened nails

and measling shins:
here is a space
again, the scone rising
to the tick of two clocks.

and here is love
like a tinsmith's scoop
sunk past its gleam
in the meal-bin.


heaney, s. (1975) mossbawn, sunlight

Excerpt | A Sermon

The Seven Social Sins are:

Wealth without work.
Pleasure without conscience.
Knowledge without character.
Commerce without morality.
Science without humanity.
Worship without sacrifice.
Politics without principle.


A sermon given by Frederick Lewis Donaldson in Westminster Abbey, London, on March 20, 1925.

Excerpt | Rodney Dangerfield

I came from a real tough neighbourhood.
Once a guy pulled a knife on me. I knew he wasn't a professional, the knife had butter on it.

Fundamentals | Aristotle

Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.

Excerpt | Isaac Newton

If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants.

Newton, I. (1975) The Correspondence of Isaac Newton

Excerpt | Sunset

The relation between what we see and what we know is never settled.
Each evening we see the sun set.
We know that the earth is turning away from it.
Yet the knowledge, the explanation, never quite fits the sight.

Berger, J. (1972) Ways of Seeing