. . . the Psychostasia of Hank Williams (Your Cheating Heart), based on the ancient Egyptian Judgement Day practice where Thoth weighs the heart of the deceased against the feather of truth, and if it is found true it goes across the Nile to ive with Osiris and eat cake, but if it is found wanting it is eaten by Amit - part crocodile, part lion and part hippo . . .
. . . and the Icy Blue Heart (Icy Blue Heart, Emmy Lou Harris version) - this last I videoed as it melted.
I also made a rather cack-handed mobile of some silver-plate votive body parts that I got at the monthly antiques market in Arezzo (I doubt they're very antique though). Originally, you place them on the altar of an appropriate saint as an offering in hope of or gratitude for the recovered health of a particular body part. I strung mine together more or less in the shape of a person. Here's the head, torso and an upper limb:
I particularly like the torso, with all its organs:
And of course the heart, the most familiar votive:
And a lovely foot.
I'm very interested at the moment in the various ways the human brain makes people - inventing characters in fiction, fantasising a lover to perfection in our mind, dreaming about people, hallucinating them, seeing ghosts, hearing voices and so on. Perhaps it is a mental, emotional, psychical version of my constant interest in surgery. God I wish I'd written Frankenstein..
And then at the Musee de la Grande Guerre in Meaux last month I saw a piece of, well, art, I suppose, which put my poor mobile to shame. It was made, like mine of artificial body parts. But this was made of prosthetics, created for soldiers who had lost limbs. It was hung on invisible strings in a cunningly lit cabinet: a glass eye, a tin mask, an arm, with a kind of girdle to hold it on, two different kinds of false leg, a wooden seat for a man with no lower half at all . . . A replacement soldier, made entirely from spare parts. It was as sad a set-up as I had ever seen.
I wasn't able to photograph it, so here is a set of anatomy parts for you to build your own:
These are all 19th or early twentieth century. Here is something from a much older world: a sixteenth-century artificial hand. A Facebook friend, the writer KA Laity, put it up on her page and it immediately grabbed me - (oh, I'm sorry).
I found this about it, on an armoury website, myarmoury.com:
This is (l) one of von Berlich's iron hands, and (r) how such things were attached:
And, a 19th-century lady's hand - an exquisite clacketty set of bottle-openers and Swiss army knives.
Happy New Year everyone. Look out for your limbs.