the soul of wit

ere are some "stories" that I enjoyed writing, plus a few written by others. They tend to be memorable (to me) instances that may (or may not) be of interest to others. There is no "order" here, chronological or otherwise, just a random collection of (mostly) unrelated stories. Mountain climbing has been an important dimension in my life, so many of the stories are mountain related.

At rare times I try poetry,
but results are amateurish.
Contrary to my fondest wish,
A poet I claim not to be.

Speaking of poetry, the Pi-ku style intrigues me; pi-ku is a three-liner (like the Japanese Haiku style, but with shorter lines). The first three digits of the mathematical pi are 3.14; a pi-ku has three syllables in the first line, one in the second line, and four in the third line. (3-14, March 14, is celebrated by some as "pi day".)

I use a pi-ku to provide a brief summary for each story - sort of like an eight-syllable subtitle. This summary appears to the right of the story title, and as a subtitle in the list of stories. The pi-ku above captures, for me, the essence, of the power of a pi-ku. In addition, each line of the above poem is eight syllables, and could itself be formed as a pi-ku.

I wish I could claim inventing the pi-ku in the upper right, but alas that was Shakespeare. At one point in Hamlet, Polonius says "Therefore, since brevity is the soul of wit ... I will be brief ..." .

In this spirit most of these stories are therefore brief, and hopefully to the point, though a few may be a bit more detailed. Despite the seeming emphasis in this prologue on poetry (and the fact that the first two are poems) most of these stories - you may be happy to hear - are ordinary prose.

First up is the poem Invictus. Written well over a century ago, it vividly describes an empowering free will that I find inspiring. I would like to think that some of the stories here reflect, in some sense, Invictus-like character.

Each story is bounded by the title banner at the beginning and this notes banner at the end. The notes banner contains various notes that may help provide additional information related to the story, such as providing more context for the story, or to complete the story behind the story, etc.

You will note that each line of Invictus is exactly eight syllables, so each either could be a pi-ku in its own right, or is pi-ku-like (fourth syllable is part of a longer word).