Terrific collection of attempts at languaging mystery around incarnate language: https://maney.us/blog/2014/12/28/meditations-on-the-incarnation-from-select-church-fathers-and-doctors/
St. John Chrysostom: Homily on Christmas Morning
This is another post I made during Advent four years ago, which bears repeating. I have read this sermon by St. John Chrysostom (late fourth century …St. John Chrysostom: Homily on Christmas Morning
This is the same struggle – (LanguageLife)
this mis-match, trans-mesh, between media (their mediums)
A woman arrived – beautiful.
First thought: why isn’t language like her?
no – why isn’t language Her.
The difference. Media.
Eventually I felt this about music, painting, photography.
Eventually I felt this about perception, expression, myself.
i.e. Why isn’t one thing another to the same effect? Why doesn’t one temporally unified multiplicity (perception) correlate adequately in another?
My writing, these shapes, lines, movements, and possible sounds and touches and sayings are ever as real as hers, (equal), but not her (different) <in so many ways, sort of> <and not many ways, kind of>
There is animated material in motion with layers of perception – interpretation – impression / meanings. And here as well.
But they are not the same,
metaphorically, experientially, actually.
And they are.
(We are, species-level, carrying similar realities in similarly leaky containers).
And we aren’t.
- Effect (1)
- Affect (2)
- Mode (0)
- Artifice (N+1 / N-1)
- Occurrence Happening Being (=)
Language lives. is alive. is not life. is life.
As also language.
She and I are. And are modally identified. Materially.
And are categorically for many striations,
Effect. Affect. Also same difference, everywhere within scales. Eventually, no difference?
Eventually…only same? In a thin layer, deep and thickly.
AND – – – – OR – – – – NOT
(same differencings, as each require equal potentialities)
This is a slippery slope of a flat plane.
Therefore I love the “Book of Idolatry,” “truth,” empirical methods! Same differences, endlessly, potential, infinite variation and similitude. Swerving curves of identity deranged.
Lo how the mirror distorts in its clarity.
The painting clarifying distorted.
One might suppose differing due to activity – close circle – if static could be posited or possible we’d see (as we are seen). But seeing is active. As is that seen.
that is, knowably unknowable
i.e. uncertain in its certainty
A Womb-bomb Psalm
Blessed be the name of the Lord –
sweet carrier of the womb –
cold and dark
within the pit.
horror of wonders –
that terrible cave
in the belly
the heart, the brain
like a virus,
a seed –
herewith do we praise thee –
and surround –
and thundering calm
veiled in darkness –
a pit, a cave,
o glorious sky!
Hold Lightly, Leave Be
Hold lightly, it said,
there are so many voices,
lest you repeat,
[the surfaces, and distance, beneaths]
windiness and water;
the moon riding along,
each night so differently
my hands open,
palms and whatever fingerprintings,
the bruising, barely,
again and again,
How tides change,
things we’ve come to think of –
each you, each I,
each every –
through the years.
In other words:
over and over
again, anew –
how ‘new’ requires reference
as wheat falls into ground
and suns set down, again,
as moons rise – (which, neither) – and
never the same.
and so on
within the like,
the long, the loving.
You come again.
I try to grip lightly –
the future never knows –
I’d like to leave it,
to gather you,
you. You. You.
“Hold lightly”, you (she) says,
“lest you repeat
and grow tired…”
My palms are open (to touch, to pass by)
I am trying to read,
To leave be.
You. There. You. Here.
A gold, glaring like sunlight, like foil paper,
glints out of the hands, gathered to plead,
like tears with their measure of salt, gleaming
an eye, like the viscous reflecting residue
of pleasure – piss, blood, the living sweats
and leaks, we run, we water the dying.
You there. You. There.
Far cries (moans, wails, echoes) from here.
You here. You. Here.
Murmurs, whispers, gasps, and laughter.
Breath upon an ear.
Blue radiance from the heart, red running out the vein.
The wheeze that squelches exhale.
Stuttered stumble – each mistake…the trial being
to sketch, to trace, erase.
Once we waved at one another.
Each goodbye a beckon.
And all digress.
Too often, once more… for Thucydides…
Feathers, flowers, for Filbert,
little donkey he must be,
ass-braying poems – silt and muck of muddle,
collecting stones and eyes and sunsets,
almost any gaze. Almost an acknowledgment.
To be. For. Anyonething. Anywhere.
Once necessary. Once.
And then more…
“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 –
“Pangs of faint light and stirrings still. Unformable graspings of the mind. Unstillable”
– Samuel Beckett –
Let’s loiter about here a little, as if language were lakelike, locatable, alive enough to lollygag loose within. Perhaps not. Perhaps it is nearly always just-becoming. Perhaps nearly all, nearly always, is thus: just-becoming – liminal lineaments languishing-then-livened, languishing-then-livened, “again” we might say, designating (de-term-ining) a balance to enlivened. How so? Why so? By what author(ity)?
“In the madhouse of skull and nowhere else” (– Samuel Beckett). Is that so?
“Skin has no choice but to converse with the world…thin, ignorant borderland of skin…myself all trespass, misunderstanding, translating, translating…” (-Laurie Sheck). Is that so?
If words were invented with sense. To “make sense” between one and an ‘other.’
What if words ARE THAT? Connective contours between.
I am inebriated, my willingness loosened to expression, though it might ruin me (like language) and I stare (Dostoevsky – ‘Myshkin’) “intently” into Mikhail Bakhtin’s face, his specific eye-gaze, and say:
“Is it the case that words are ‘meant,’ are ‘formed,’ are breathed, are…constructed, are…utilized, to be tissue woven between ‘me’…and ‘you’?”
Do we… speak, say, expire back and forth… to become? To string and weave lines, flows, strands, threads, that might forge or invent co-respondence, texture, significations combining you and myself into WE?
But Bakhtin is dead, and cannot answer. Mikhail Bakhtin does not have the capacity to co-respond.
…like Beckett, Blanchot, Plato, Montaigne, Pessoa, Pascal, Wallace or Euclid, Bulgakov, Heraclitus, or Celan (as with any and all dead!) he emits traces (tracings) with which I can consider, decipher, and interrogate in and within my ‘selves’ but not between…
What might this ‘mean’ – between anyone? Nothing.
It can not, has no opportunity to, delineate or circumscribe, draft, figure or shape any relation.
Sign emitted, call evoked, death, and then text as silent partner. Prognostic retrograde delineation.
Bankrupt, impassible, impossible, communique.
The decoding of words as communication, connection? An imaginary. A handling of terms. Inventing, devising, originary. With whom? Where? How? Hint and vestige, remnant and sketch, scheme and fabrication, inkling and outline.
Unstillable. Unformable graspings of the mind. Is that so?
If we’re limning the liminal now, let’s loosen the letters and slacken the sieves. Lasso and lounge, scatter and scrape, together (to gather) – a scintillate sense – sporadic sparks, succulent scenarios – exist for enlivening language, whatever limited lust lies therein – if language is locatable and not merely modal mechanics? A modicum of music then, some scrap of sonority, some lingual litmus ‘making sense.’ Whatever. Possibility, potential, particible particulars…
“THE TEST IS COMPANY”
“If there may not be no more questions let there at least be no more answers”
– Samuel Beckett, Company –
“We must not die: kindred spirits will be found”
– Viktor Shklovsky –
“The experimental dimension is precisely where thinking at its limit takes place, where the singularity of a given thought is being shaped…”
– Michel de Beistegui –
“the present is as long as a walk when I am walking”
– Chryssipe, quoted in Francois Jullien –
Or, “the present is as long as the sentence I’m composing…” the tune, the breath, the weather… the lunge, the gaze, the listen… the sex, starlight, heartbeat… presence determined, according to scale.
“…as long as the thought I am thinking…” that leads to the next, and the borrowed, the other, imagined. The languages lent, or made new, bastardized, reconstructed, remingled…
Therefore [have I now ‘left’ present/-ce?] the present writing is present just as long as it presents itself? Does this explain run-ons and magical realism? The refusal to pause or to finish? Avoidance of punctuation, cessation, or periods…in order to be writing? (as long as it is writing…living written?).
I am drawn in writing presence. And I aspire. To be writing as often present-ly as possible (in all the senses of the terms you might conceive). Working, present-ly, with presences that present themselves in the activity of writing – ages, layers, eons of language becoming toward these significations I am physically inscribing NOW with evolving, accumulative, adapting and erasured meanings over times and places, persons and presents/-ces. This continuous bodily activity and operation marking whatever presently transpires on lines – between my organism, this instrument and matter of lined pages – creating a Mobius-like twisting endless loop of circuitry, a breathless action (almost afraid of interruption, disconnection, or cessation) as if it would disqualify present/-ce with unauthorized and arbitrary finite personal breakage.
Yet I know (or believe) the present/-ing will continue all the same whether I am writing or not – ever assailing with near-infinite (perhaps infinite) encountering and engagements…be-ing… regardless of my regard, participation, choice of action, and awareness. Unconcerned by my present/-ce as I a grain of soil or blade of grass, singular molecules or mosquitos, the hairs dropped from our heads. Matters of scale of what matters. [To/for us. ME. At our scale, at whatever scale, DEPENDING].
Interruption occurs. Into, inter-, enter: an eruption. Anything that commands response. A call from another, a locusts’ buzz, tonal or temperature flux. Changing track and attention. I plea for intervention versus interruption, that the breathless present/ce might go on, unintruded but intervened. Eventuation, eventually, new contents entering veins of the stream I am searching, spreading, scribing…at the limit of…
Intrusion. Inter-eruption. Or inter-vention, intra-venously… WILL OUR PRESENT PRESENCE all bound up with, knotted, wound and intersecting, inserted and inserting reciprocally or complicitly…go on, remain, continue? Will it be dissipation or dissension, distension, desiccation or decay? Can we have, swerve, welcome an irruption intravenously? I hesitate, I turn. A response.
Staccato desiccation. I’ve been bombarded. Like tragedy, untranceable. Persistence and flow stuttering, gives way. The stream of thought polluted, a turbulence assigned. Coming undone, branch drying up, kindling, that is to say…
Yet if to say, that is – perhaps we’re crossing, coming-over, over-coming interruption as irruption. Response-able, disabling, but hearing more, lines converging with complexity, a chaos, a banking flow…or spilling over and dispersing?…who could know. What means – BECOME?
“the present is a write, as long as I am writing” – this presence fractured into fragments, presents, now, perhaps beyond deciphering. The mode of ciphers, potent codes – standing for?? Standing for??? Which represents THIS…what you read. Read in, read from, read into and out of. We do not step into the same stream twice, it has been said, or three times, or even once, even, again. We don’t know “same,” yet use it like a God, destructive hoping (“identity,” “non-contradiction,” even Truth(s) or Fact(s)) – that SOMEthing might not change.
NOT in this world, and we know no other. Conjuring zeroes, ideals and myths, utopias (literally “no-places”) and lines of imaginings. Hoping for control? Security? Continuance? – of what, of which…presence. Scales to track the motions with, fallibly. Attempts to stay the flow, stay with the flow, re-cognize, re-member, re-main. What continues to fall apart and reassemble, ever ‘new’ but only partly, in its occurring, range of scales ever irrupting, erupting, interrupting as comings-to-be in all their goings, it’s going…a fragile now.
But I digress along the stream, exposing fragments, perhaps connected to a mouth, a trunk or mother. Dispersive river, interminably con-fusing elements transgressing finitude. Number, line and term. Concept, law, or theory. None of it works, and some of it seems to. All may belong, depending on scale.
A matter of present/ce perhaps, and of movement. Some matter of species, perception and dream. Susurrate surround, full of disruption, riding waves, but not for long.
“the present is as long…as a singularity of thought is being shaped…”
– Chrysippe + de Beistegui –
(much later and rescaled)