We followed the arc of the diver, losing it in the fog, wishing to make it out clear. I might have said this meant “philosophy.”
“Poetry,” he said, “is utilizing known language to invoke the unknown.” Or certaintly uncertainty, or something like that, which I liked, and indicated by asking what is not uncertain?
Your hands, the music. My desire, a naming for them. I think of your waist as a séance.
What is it to be crippled? I keep trying to use words.
Another asked about the “arc of the diver.” How should I know? All of my sentences should be read as questions. I wonder how divergent questions or commands might be… as statements.
She said, “it falls between. It has to go somewhere.” I guess we pressed it there… were poietic… since we couldn’t find a name. “Dis-appearance” might be one. Like a guess that can’t be falsified.
We all hold a paper marker printed “You are here.” Perhaps paper is too substantial. But it still seems like an invitation I wish we had.
Maybe this is why Albahari inscribed “Words are something else.” We leave it at that. And are flummoxed as to what “that” refers to.
Still we look.
You move like flocks of birds that wheel. I’ve never comprehended “swarm.” Mathematics doesn’t cut it, though it certainly uncertainly tries.
The telephone Pictionary of ear-mouth-brain when we issue sound or gaze. Don’t foibles equal actions? Parts of us experience this as violence, as valence.
Relation as a struggle to balance victimhood and perpetration. Uncertainly.
When or where does this infiltrate unknown?
He went on to say…
I thought (imagined?) your ankles, knees, elbows and knuckles as adroit sworls in swift mountain streams.
So also losing it in the fog, hoping to remember where the trees were. Philosophy. Or was it the forest?
Poetry as ocean surface between “known”/unknown? So wavy, so heaving. No one said that.
The richest respect he gave was his readiness to call me “Nobody.” Or “Anybody.” Carte blanche.
I can hardly perceive what’s in your head now. Potentia? An horizon of waves. A place where words press images press events, the banal. Perhaps. Uncertain sphere of unknowing? They say learning happens there. Like a cell in a culture, animal in terrain. Cacophony of dreams.
Each time we encounter.
I’ll map it out for you.
No, I’ll inscribe it.
47 cuts (myopic) in everything.
- That’s as far back as the lineage has been traced. A patchwork of stitches, genes, and lines (or lies).
Unfinished. Inability to understand apparatus. Has not accomplished death.
Librarian, parent: attempts to track, preserve, and access – things precious, silent, useful.
Pseudo-scholar (any otherwise?), thinker: an inability to avoid pollution when considering or engaging relics of world.
If desired sexually, probably will… it depends.
Sometimes only in pieces.
Life is hard to figure. Mostly illegible, as well.
47 marks on anything.
Read what you can, listen.
Skin-shaped textures. Walks on land. Occasionally tree or canyon. Mountain, river, ravine.
As easy to trace as wind.
Kiss for kiss. Breathing.
Something (someone?) called “melody.”
Intimate uncertainty? Certainly not. Perhaps. She would know.
Maybe furry, fuzzy androgyny.
Offspring reveals: “Crow’s a Decomposer.”
What is poet?
Said all things grow, cannot hold, to dust and such. Singing.
Some might remember.
Touch. Taste. Trying.
Loves deeply. Expects nothing but passing, passage.
Dances. Slowly. Grasslands. Prairie.
AND. OR. NOT. (every day. moment) +/-?
Like erasure. Accumulation. Obscurity.
Decomposer. Lover. Friend. Everenemy.
“Love” (used, spoken, felt, lost, wished-for, pondered).
Language, landscape, living organism… perhaps that equals.
Sing “You Fucking Did It”
When does death arrive? Why?
Glossy haze = language, landscape, living organism.
Children. Music. Language. Elements of play.
Stretched out. A boy and a girl (E. Whitacre). A boy and a boy. Girl upon girl. They and them.
A poet working a way to an underworld.
Death is. (a “thing”). Exists. =.
Kansas: what gives silence for silence.
As easy to trace as wind.
Igloo. Cabin. Family farm.
DNA. Bacteria. Cancer(ous) cellular cell’d activity.
The living. The dying.
47 paces toward the dark.
How life gets made. A ratchet, a sprocket, an engine and a wheel. Add water. Fuel to the fire. Desiccate.
Perhaps it will rain. A slight ritard. Some sounding quiet. Remediate.
Watching flowers blooming to dissolve. A capture.
Sight slated to dim. Shuffling ensues. The stoop.
In a chair nearby, another. More better for company. When alone.
47 paces in the fog.
Take three, four, and so on.
Circle round. Loop back. Never again.
Easy to trace as wind.
Leaving lights on.
Reading words, far from men.
Lost facilities. The stakes.
Dwindle toward final.
The effort, the offspring, the progeny.
47 accounts of the night and the wheel-well thickened with road.
Splashes the mill. Grinds crank. Pressures to turn,
turning back, away, toward.
47 gaps in the shawl. Inconnu.
With something like delight. How to stand before them.
Poeting down for underworld.
Was there ever progress?
Takes the hand.
Strikes the key. The 47th.
Saturate for stupid. Loses steps. Must wake.
A happy mess. Weighted results, dependencies, accumulation.
As easy to trace as wind.
Utilizes snow too much. The rain.
Abandoned places. What removes. The melt. What remains.
The unfinished. Undoing. Become.
For ‘I’ is a thing that breaks.
47 footprints from the hands. The notable.
Swirly ways of working. Feels like – .
Inspiration hopelessness. This language.
This living organism. Landscape.
47 miles to go. All the cracks and divets.
Bolt after bolt unscrolled as flesh. Laid out. Stretched out. Smoothed. Sagged. Ironed. Smelt.
Felt for quality. Caressed and examined.
The lonely wonder. Represent.
47 X x = ?
Confusion persuasive. Revelation / insight. Chords resolve. Dissonance.
Language + landscape + living. 47 measures.
Months go by. Chairs and couches filled by others’ beds. Warmth weighs.
Waits on wisdom. Depletion. Adventure as excited strain.
Poison intravenous. Copulating cells and fluids.
Ends of the guilty. Interpret unfinished systems. Dis-ease.
The long whine wail across the prairie. Animal manual. Wind wires rain.
What gets whispered and transcribed.
Stumbling toward the underworld. Looking back.
Eyes up, ocean bottom.
Some things are out of hand.
The grey and black. The dimming.
47 warnings. The morning comes.
Making it. Happens.
Diagnoses and analyses.
Shuffles, stumbles, strikes the keys.
Easy to trace as wind.
Chorded coagulation, confounding,
comprehending (very little, almost nothing)
language, landscape, living,
another note tunes the swing on the porch –
what’s wide open, open wide
Shrewd and undiminished.
Minimize = understanding.
A matter of scale,
for I am a thing that breaks.
47 slices of nothing.
(alas, the notebooks keep filling…but the time to type does not avail)
If I. If something stirred, was stirring. The dying. Any of us. Were something stirring. For me. If I. The lonely. Any of us. The longing. The longing lonely. Were something stirring. Were I. If I.
If only. Could be any. If one. If only. If I. For me. An other. Any of us. A stirring. I, only dying lonely longing one. If. A stirring. An other. Someone to speak “we.” To say “you.” A whispered “us.” For me.
What would I (if I, if other) say, if something stirred, if stirring an other, some other who, who might say “you,” “we,” whisper “us,” something stirring then, what would I say. If I. If you or we, I whisper “us,” stirring still, what would I say?
When might a story begin? Who could start the unknown? Only language. Perhaps only language knows what can’t be said. What is yet to exist. Or may not. Ever. What is that to me? If I. If indeed that is what I do.
Touching other to make us. If I. If other. Then a voice, a touch, an extra, an excess, we. If you. If I. What is story to that? How so?
From anywhere: impermanence. If an other. If I. Some story’s beginning, how begun. If there were a sound, as it were, so to speak.
to occupy us
as an open question
who (yet) knows
what language means?
I love/d you.
What more is wanted
With all of its not
mattering, like changing
going on. A hawk
(or owl) shrieks
We ask again
at the canyon,
the peak, the abyss,
And I say simply
‘You are beautiful,
therefore I love you.’
but some report,
some expression –
This is why I’m alive.
Possessives and plurals,
the mysteries remain.
Don’t start reading. The writing always stops when there’s something to read.
There’s always something to read.
Somethings you really, really want to read.
You want, gutturally – in the stomach of your heart – she’s ill, she’s suffering, the phone, to text, just text, “still love you”, like that, she must need care, she must (perhaps not, perhaps she’s been more than cared for, is ecstatically happy, relieved, content, unbothered – it was she who chose to leave, who left, after all).
Text someone else, another, one who maybe wants you to love her, who misses. Avoid frustration.
No. Write it. Write about the urges, the diversion, the avoidance. Read a little first, get a taste, a feel for what letters, what language, might do…
Take a drink (an attempt to frustrate frustration, avoiding satisfactions, short-circuiting risks with another), no texting, follow your fears, note your diversions, attend your avoidance, but act elsewhere. Write.
Could start anywhere, and none a satisfaction, only inscriptions or actions of frustration – to read, to write, to love the one who doesn’t want it, who’s trying to get away (has gotten away, but also wants to leave it behind), to contact one who might or who does want to hear from you (but you don’t, don’t know, just want love, some response) – want to write…
…for ANYone, any SOMEone, perhaps yourself, perhaps all the opportunities lying about you wanting to be read – no, you want to read them…
Avoid frustration, settle for imagined response, even address, to be called – the words in the books rarely fail in calling you, addressing you, which for you feels like response, like being wanted, almost needed, like a text from ANYone, any SOMEone, who invites your love.
Take a drink, frustrate frustration, move into fear, toward satisfaction (or one of its bastard offspring).
Don’t check that phone. Don’t even touch it. Leave it in another room. Turn it off, power it down.
See the words come easy when you simply write them out instead of fracturing them, spreading them thin through a network, splaying them across pages and phones and emails and…
he who already knows cannot go beyond a known horizon
– Georges Bataille, Inner Experience –
In a bout of acute loneliness (a sharp pang of alone signifying a sort of paralysis – some definite inability, however temporary, to start oneself up by or with oneself) I reached out to Hannah.
For some of you, the term Hannah will conjure connotations and resonances, perhaps emotions or concerns, discomforts, even though she does not exist.
Or I loaded the film Satantango by Bela Tarr & Laszlo Krasznahorkai.
A start-up, a stimulus, a searching.
Actually I wrote the name Hannah, or Hollie or Holly or Hallie or Halley or Bela or Chris or Maurice Blanchot.
To be lonely and to reach out.
A drink then, for interaction.
A scribble on a page.
A smoke for an ‘other.’
I read Beckett.
Maria. Edie. Sarago. Marcuse.
To become. To be. To begin.
As if I knew.
In a bout of acute loneliness I penned a letter to Herman Melville.
I wrote words onto a lined page.
I made an ‘other’ and called her, Hannah.
Or Meagan or Meghann, Angie or Angela or Angelo. Gilles or Jill. Jean and Jan and Jen.
I reach out. I almost full fill. Another notebook. A drink. A smoke. A page marked and turned.
I do not know what loneliness is.
Perhaps it is nothing, or nothingness. Perhaps frustrated desire. For – ? What is not (isn’t that what defines desires?). The missing, the absence, the unknown.
I called it Hannah.
Hell or Helen or Helene/Helena.
No one knows but the name that works best. Christy or Christina. Vernoica/Veronique.
I read Jabes.
A drink to an other (to signify might be). A smoke for the presencing. Another word, another name for something. Out there = O ther. Elves of else.
The book’s called Nothing Matters: a book about nothing, because “that nothing becomes the quest, which in turns begets something” (Ornan Rotem).
Dear Herman, Dear Samuel, Dear Franz:
Dear Larry, Dear Jack, Dear Jon:
I do not know what it is to be alone, and my loneliness is painfully acute.
Dear Laura, Dear Sara, Dear Simone:
This is my correspondence with nothing.
I remember that I am falling
That I am the reason
And that my words are the garment of what I shall never be
Like the tucked sleeve of a one-armed boy
– W.S. Merwin, “When You Go Away”
Time keeps accumulating on my inability to write, to find time to write, to process living with language. Simply to keep this space alive, I am posting a journal-like entry so as not to give up.
Recent weeks have been dominated by readings of Doug Rice, Laurie Sheck, Jon Fosse, Georges Bataille, Larry Levis, Maurice Blanchot, Samuel Beckett, Franco Berardi, Robert Bringhurst, Jeremy Fernando, Elfriede Jelinek and others…
What a traversal, passage, the past couple of months have been…
…like following the draw of the moon through dire straits
in dark, tumultuous seas…
…a feeling that everything is at its limit (Bataille, l’extreme) – EXPERIENCE.
- pressured work projects, needs, deadlines, demands
- endless and constant family logistics, accidents, needs
- relentless parenting, relating, service to others
- throngs of people and groups
- lack of friends, lovers, supportive presences
- fear, health, danger, exhaustion
- loss of partner
- inexistence of calm or solitude
- imposed travels
- absence of sleep and rest
- indulgence in desire and harm
- minimal process
- poor eating or nourishment
- tension, strain
- lack (wellness) & excess (pressure)
…a teetering balance…
Mind you, this is how it feels in me, not how it is.
I miss everything that is/was good
There is a certain uncertain sorrow to things
(presence of melancholia, moon-draw)
Georges Bataille’s certainties:
- WE ARE NOT EVERYTHING
- WE WILL DIE
THE UNKNOWN THE UNSOLVABLE THE POSSIBLE
Lynda Barry & the “Underground Skateboard” – how we draw from others work what we need to survive
Lemony Snicket & the autographing instruction that I should “read something else”
immersion (doom, closure) held in levity
– 1st Tarot reading –
(processual journey mythical)
Jacob recommends Homer – The Odyssey
doubling letting go – holding together The Devil/The Chariot
dark surfaces / surfaces of darkness (The Fool)
The Moon (dark journey) crossed by the Queen of Swords (wounding love)
THE UNKNOWN THE UNSOLVABLE THE POSSIBLE
The King of Wands – leaders, pole vaulters, utilizing tension toward propulsion
leap over? through? on?
Pas sage – not wisdom FRAUGHT JOURNEY
– Odyssey –
BATAILLE: “nothing is final…”
– “what is not there, which, once it is seen, often in literature, tells us what is” (Fosse)
“the suffering of the disintoxicated” (Bataille)
- challenging everything (of putting everything into question) – Bataille
- always a breakdown of systems that will not be restored – Sheck
“Experience reveals nothing and cannot found belief nor set out from it” – Bataille
“The hand moves forward, the tragedy begins” – Bataille
“no one grieves with you for what you are unable to say”
“life itself…always swerves away from my mouth”
– Elfriede Jelinek –
“how I’m owned by that which will not answer” – Sheck
“What you are will be spelled by whatever
lies trapped in your hand” – Robert Bringhurst
– emptiness is also empty –
“what is the part of us… feels…unnamed…
…i must live at some distance from convinced” – Sheck
“When I say you to what isn’t there – I mean me” (Larry Levis)
“you won’t find me in me” (Jelinek)
Experience eludes understanding ( Bataille)
– nor can I compute the possible (Sheck)
is just one
to move through
FIRST AND FOREMOST YOU WRITE (Fosse)
“From an abandoned myth
(I write to you)” (D. Rice)
– wanting them to mean nothing –
– and suggest everything (L Levis)
- hold open the imagination of possibility
- “do not go gentle into that good night”
- Moderation. Extreme limit.
- Contra-digitalia. First and foremost write.
“Thoughts constituted by non-uttered words…This monologue always – ‘I speak’”
Paolo Virno – Word Became Flesh
“its thisness, then, cannot be fully articulable since any such articulation would require the articulation of a complete context, which in all cases is the world…often the experience includes an awareness of not being able to give an account of the this”
Jan Zwicky – Wisdom & Metaphor
“457. Yes: meaning something is like going up to someone”
Ludwig Wittgenstein – Philosophical Investigations
“…I wept up to a great age, never having really evolved in the fields of affection and passion, in spite of my experiences”
Samuel Beckett – Malone Dies
“to frame the unsayable, & mute the sayable… he was the singing and the no one there…”
Larry Levis – The Darkening Trapeze
“All this must be considered as if spoken by a character in a novel – or rather by several characters”
Roland Barthes – Roland Barthes
– I believe I told them that “all language was like a metaphor” in several characters.
I heard nothing, I said to myself, as if nothing were something that might be heard.
Still I stroked her ankle, index-finger-pad to delicate-bird-bone. And lip. Finding textures and surfaces with lips and tongue. Precarious…it never lasts. Taste and touch are like that [metaphor] immediate.
Am I speaking when I write? What is happening now?
– “often the experience…includes an awareness of not being able…” (J. Zwicky)
She tasted of…
“…to give an account of the this…” (Zwicky)
…coffee grounds, sandalwood, humidity, and turquoise…
I left off my exploring.
What is it like [metaphor] to…?
I told them that ‘I speak’ is a metaphor…as is indeed all the rest having to do with language.
(consolations of philosophy)
I hear nothing when I talk with myself. [metaphors].
The sounds of flying a kite.
It’s rare that I am naked. But “yes: meaning is like going up to someone” (L.W.)…some sort of connection is made (some convergent affect) and a resolution leaks open…resonance…endlessly (perhaps).
“I wept up to a great age”…by which we always mean the aggregate…which seems quite less than my ‘great age’, if ever there was one.
What is ‘great’ like? [metaphor]
Once I was younger…
– Always wished you’d known –
Are photographs metaphors?
I said that ‘nothing made is like.’
(“in spite of my experience”)
“Did I say I only say a small proportion of the things that come into my head?” (ontology of perception) (Samuel Beckett)
I intended to quote: “It is a pretty little object, like a – no, it is like nothing” (Samuel Beckett)
But what is ‘nothing’ like? A “pretty little object”?
We know what he means (“like going up to someone”) … I was naked, I tasted.
You know the story… “I wept up to a great age.” I touched, I tried, I felt.
What do you see?
Hardly ever the point. Perception + Reflection = Imagination (perhaps) I told them – it’s a metaphor – a “crossing-over,” some traversal. The trace of sweat behind her knee just above the calf.
Once I was alive.
I crossed over.
Several characters: ‘I speak.’
“Affection. Passion.” I said. (what I had thought it was ‘to learn’ [metaphor]).
– “in spite of my experience” –
Perhaps language wasn’t made for speaking.
Someone. Somewhere. Maybe. Here. Now.
That thing that words do [metaphor].
The “experience of this”…”non-uttered words.” Non-utterable? Perhaps, this. (I traced the swerve of her, its curvature, hair-smell and sounding…’I speak,’ non-uttering…)
What is writing?
I believe I was speaking of metaphor…
“Yes,” I said, “yes…” “it’s always alright to weep.”
…yet another example of negotiating tools and context. The previous post it seemed natural, as if I reached into the surround in order to work through something, reveal or discover something I hunched toward. For me this is often why reading, why conversation, why activity – in order for something to emerge, perhaps unsubmerge, for perhaps…
As I sat to write the other day, I recognized my reaching (a little more). That because 4 colors of pen were available… because they fill my surround when I am annotating texts I read… more voices seemed to join the conversation. Perhaps intoned by the colors, perhaps offering myself other conversations, altering access, even as the shape of the page contains my possibility. Or evokes it.
Anyway… the notebook notions tincture now… and I – both follow and concoct…
“words are drying out” – Franco “Bifo” Berardi
…and for her,
I held in my hands
a few hours, whom I gave back
only to keep holding the space where she was,
a small fire in the rain”
– Galway Kinnell
“Who will ever be able, in this heap of dust, to tell the words from their underpinnings of paper?”
– Edmond Jabes
“Life is the search for the impossible via the useless…no one truly knows how to know and thinking confuses everything.”
– Fernando Pessoa
“man has no other way of living ‘now’ at his disposition besides the possibility to realize it through the insertion of discourse in the world”
– Emile Benveniste
“…if philosophy can be defined at all…”
– Silvia Jonas
“THE DREAM’S NAVEL”
or, Troubling Abstraction
or, refusing reduction
or, peircing the generic
There was a fox with a beautiful tail. And wondrously colorful. Like a dream, but tangibly perceptible.
– A dream then, while you’re thick in it –
No, an actual. Not a virtual. An imagining. Beauty.
And this, it is said, is philosophic thought… the questioning and caress of what is, unknown.
– Perhaps unknowable? –
What I do not know. Have not experienced. Know this way.
– Imagining. –
Experience. Experiencing. Almost like a dream, but languaged now, i.e. controlled, labeled, made discrete and symbolically communicable…signified. Not that.
- An other
– Something, anyway. Try again. Become. –
To cross. Trans-late. Waver boundaries of meaning. Only to continue discretely, or to discretely continue. To work at the edge… both/and versus either/or versus verses… Weaving. Text-ure.
Ever again, always another other, anew, again… What is: difference, and repetition. Never the same, almost, again
– What? –
Someone or something is living. Is being. Perhaps simply is. Perhaps that… if only we knew. If anyone could.
– Imagine –
Someone (something?) said. Set down, symbolized, spoke… suggested…
– Something to work with – from, into toward, away, perhaps. –
Dip and scratch, gesture, limit, now one, now another, both? The thread, the fox’s multi-colored tail. Needle. Point. Pierce. But the thread connects above/below, under/over, in/out, alike… just traversing, transforming, betweening, continuous. Air, breath, blood, wave, particle, motion, fluid… Almost a point-of-meeting, a multi-sided trace, not a touch. Not touching, perhaps. But touching’s not a point of contact. Where do you feel the touch of your hand to a leaf? The touch of your hand to yourself…?
I’d imagined so. I’d dreamt of thought. Particularized continuity. Cognizable flow…
– Something to work on… in… to be… come… –
Participate? Renew? Anew? A gain?
There was a fox with a beautiful tail. Like a dream, not quite limit or form or shape… potential, like beauty, like amost…AND… Like a resonant word meaning this and more also, perhaps non-compliant, unresolved
– How “hate” = “love”, both and neither? –
What!? I don’t know.
Adjoin. A margin? Where what, which, might be meeting – meets all ways? Area? Neither/nor, both/and, reciprocity?
– Someone spoke “transduction” –
The fox’s tail is never still, too many hairs to distinguish, melded, trembling in airy surround. Sometimes the light seems colored, sometimes the fox’s tail.
– Perhaps –
Always part question, regardless the notion, emotion, or statement.
May not have been a fox
– Every thing questions –
Such is our “stance”? – ever in motion
Only a question, questing, going-on/in/for/toward/away?
I saw colors in the light, or air, I “took” to be a fox. I ex-tracted, ab-stracted, perceived… removed and oriented, made foreign, recognizable. This woman is so beautiful.
– In other words, “desire,” an imagining –
Almost like a dream
– What IF? What if we take back as we give, and offer as we reduce or remove?
Now one thing and another
And others more and more
– Only extension, addition? To multiply? –
Cuts that open and join… multiply and combine…
A fox with a beautiful tail, perhaps… flowing in forested light…
Anything, anywhere, and also
– And also not-this, not-that, not-quite, almost… else…