My Correspondence with Nothing

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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.

Perhaps Kafka.

To be lonely and to reach out.

A drink then, for interaction.

A scribble on a page.

A smoke for an ‘other.’

Some music.

I read Beckett.

The cat.

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.

Or Hamza.

Hell or Helen or Helene/Helena.

Laurie.

No one knows but the name that works best.  Christy or Christina.  Vernoica/Veronique.

Beatrice.

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:

Dear Hannah:

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.

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A Short Sort of Story

“can the illegible be legible?” – Helene Cixous

“one cannot write without repeating something” – Jeremy Fernando

I repeat.  I am an ant.

I have forgotten.

I remember.

It is finished.

~~~~~~~~~

I begin.

It has begun.

~ in media res ~

It never begins.

~~~~~~~~~

I am.

Not.

Maybe.

Why?

~~~~~~ 

Salutations!

Voila!

‘allo!

—-

~~~~~~

Otherwise.

In other words.

A.K.A.

Not.

(Knots)

Do you realize how important “whatever” is?

I follow (in) a trail of marks.

I have become.

“My” beginning.

Insofar.  (In so far).  [in media res]

-NO MATTER.  TRY AGAIN.  FAIL AGAIN.  FAIL BETTER.- Beckett

I repeat – “I am an ant”

“Hello little ant in a line!”

“Look at that cute creature!”

Footfalls.

~~~~~~~~~

Feet fall.  Thump, thud.

Repeat.

Continue.

“I can’t go on.  I’ll go on.”

~~~~~~~~

I repeat an ant.

Hello.

…and so on…

…begins…

“…or is it that language already says more already?…” – Roland Barthes

…and so it begends.

“the other cannot be determined or decided” – Leslie Hill, on Blanchot

Self-Beckett Confessions

“I have only to go on, as if there were something to be done, something begun, somewhere to go.  It all boils down to a question of words, I must not forget this… May one speak of a voice, in these conditions?… If only I knew what I have been saying… Bah, no need to worry, it can only have been one thing, the same as ever…”

“At no moment do I know what I’m talking about, nor of whom, nor of where, nor how nor why”

“Yes, in my life, since we must call it so, there were three things, the inability to speak, the inability to be silent, and solitude, that’s what I’ve had to make the best of…”

“I don’t know what I’m saying.  I’m doing as I always did, I’m going on as best I can”

– Samuel Beckett –

Haunted Man

[from a crumpled writing found under a car seat among additional trash, transposed to typing as a record of a mind’s mayhem and mistakes]

“Deliver me, prays the haunted man.  Therefore…”

Gunnar Olsson, Abysmal

I am Dostoevsky and I am Beckett.  I am Hegel and Heidegger and Holderlin.  I am Kafka.

I am not good enough for any of you.  I do not merit your time nor your attention, affection, sensibilities, your human talents, or your care… no conceivable reason to mention “love.”

But I love you.  I am the one who loves you.  The one who writes.  Who writes these words.  The haunted one, the Reader, the Librarian; the Lover, Scholar, I am me.  I love you.  I am haunted.  Words runnel through me, and with them thoughts, and with them feelings, and with them meanings, which means…nothing.  No matter, no space, no time.

The “haunted man” is a passage, a passing, a ‘type.’  Of no import, little reality, barely occurrence.

*

I am Blanchot, am Homer, am divine Scriptures, and Shakespeare.  Simply, small-ly, in my own way, this very general way, I am what humans do with language.  For one another, with one another, to one another, as.

*

Yards and houses, flesh and voices, signs and symbols, marks and sounds, music and rhythyms and gestures, as attempts to conjoin – join and connect – survive, discover, endure, be, become, in-volve… With no idea.  Or ideas that continually prove false and faulty.  Elaborate records of revision, perhaps better inscribed as simple songs of effort.  Urges only TO BE, and that, TO BE CONNECTED.

But what do I know?  I’m Pythagoras, call me Ishmael or Ahab, Everyman or Whatever.  I’m out-dated.  Assign me a number.  I don’t really care.  I really care.  I am here, and I, (at least) re-present, or present again, or presence, a sort of being.  Such as it is… with no “REAL” way to evaluate, estimate, “tell,” or “express.”

*

Satan, then, Jesus, Joyce, Proust, Alexander.  No matter, no space, no time, only IS.

A “tradition” (as it were, in our own words).  We.  Its + That + This.  US.  Humans strangely (apparently) in environments.  These ways of thinking, of being, of behaving and operating, of supposedly surviving (but with what evidence?  WHO or WHAT might know?).

How might elements arranged thus & so, survive?  I am Nebuchadnezzar, Mohammed, Hammurabi and Ishtar.  I am ab-original.

I am Nothing.  Everything.  No one.  Me.

Each time.

Each press of the pen: “Hello – ‘here’”

*

As simply as I can construct it (all of it, any of “it”) it goes something like this: accidents occur, accidents are weird, and accidents give way.

I, like all other(s), an accidental novel.  Occasional and Whatever.

WHAT HAPPENS TO BE… at any given point-of-measurement (i.e. as far as we have a capacity to render, sunder, and effect – “Reality” (for us)).  Some quirky, unlikely, ridiculous, painstaking, odds-massively-against, and over-dramatic assessment of a certain sort of being-in, being-with, co-occurrence, happen-stance, we fabricate “human.”

TO BE SOMETHING

(organism, constituent, element, participant, activity)

*

In many other words (for the sake or ability of ‘them,’ ‘it,’ ‘all’) I may as well be.  Be Hallie or Ollie or Aidan or Rhesus.  Chief Joseph or Samson or Ghandi or Jordan.  Be you or Sara or Maya or Jimmy John.

“no matter.  Try again.  Fail again…” no matter.

THIS TOO SHALL PASS.

“the venom of the serpents were within him”

Gunnar Olsson, Abysmal

HOW SHOULD I KNOW?

*

And so what if I were Bernhard or Bach, Napoleon, Attila, Montaigne or Dorothy Parker?  If I had the ammunition or energy (and weaponry?) – the rhetoric, the nerve, or the madness.  L. Sterne, Nagarjuna, Hafiz, JL Borges?

“No matter.  Try again.  Fail again…”

Titian, Beethoven, Plato/Socrates, Palestrina.  Michelangelo, V. van Gogh, and Chuang Tzu.  You.

“No matter.  Try again.  Fail again.”

(hardly Beckett)

Untitled Fiction III

III.  “…with murderous care…”

Jon had said, to Jesse, about the fires.

So we persisted, Jon, Jesse, and I, and the deceased Beckett, with perhaps thousands of others, unbeknownst any to each around some mythical innermost.

“Fail better.”  The worst times are the ones in which one simply wants to quit failing altogether.  Unfortunately (literally) that necessarily entails a kind of “end of the world as one ‘knows’ [perceives, participates, experiences, or imagines] it” – either suicide, tragedy, ‘terminal’ illness – death of some sort.  Maybe silence, but that’s not certain.

The game table is always already laid, you’re always simply ‘entering’ it (LW points out this fallacy in his collections of numbered critiques of anything anyone writes or says or claims) actually (as far as we know) always already there (where you ‘find’ – what?!? – your ‘self’ – what?!?) and (again, perhaps, literally, unfortunately – or at the very least extremely limitedly) you can only occupy one position at the table (or wherever the action happens to be) at a time, that, unfortunately, always involves the very delimited…well, YOU.  These are the arrangements as they transpire.

Language can (and does), we surmised, go anywhere.  I try to record, invent, notate, mark, initiate.  It all seems unnameable.  Or of far too many names, references, usages, subtexts and connotations, inferences and denotations, already implemented in order to represent anything undone, reconstructed, deconstructed, novel or ‘new.’  “There’s nothing new under the sun” was already a cliché at the beginning / in the earliest phases.

Fires and voids all imagined early.  [Apeiron.  Chora/Khora.  Clinamen.  Flux.  Infinity.  ABSENCE.  The ‘Other.’].  I begin.  Again.  GWFH and Freud refer to this as “repetition.”  A hopeless hope of emergence.  As different or unique as it may seem, ever a plenitude of the pre-existing.  The already-there.

Been there, done that, Beckett exhausts from his grave alongside.  “He was found lying on the ground…a voice comes to one in the dark” Imagine.  Imagine.  Everything is already there.  The table set and set again, arranged.  Already there when you wake to it.  World.

It hasn’t…apparently…been given up.  Perhaps it is inexhaustible.  Limited though we be, we seem to be teeming with it/them… efforts at the unsayable.  Unnameable.  How it is.  What is the what.  Lost in the labyrinth of the occurrence, experience, now with shoddy, partial, biased and over-specified or eccentrically particular maps, guides, or rulebooks.  Ourselves.

 

Recycling…in retrospect

Two variations of older, longer works…trying to remember possibilities…

Words Gestures Order

Fragments

Words & Gestures

 

Becoming What and Who

I would find it difficult to praise this work enough and urge you to engage it if you share a deep love of creating and participating in literature and works of art.

Toward a Reading of Forms – by Jean Rousset

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