Monday, October 4, 2010

the emotional ... sometimes

the emotional state / this interruption, for short / what that consists of. / always pulling people into / novel terms but / somebody says something / sentiments, only sometimes

In prison or in the tekkes, the rebetes did not have the luxury of a small orchestra. In prison this would have been forbidden, and in the tekkes it would have attracted the unwanted attention of the police.
As a Roman citizen I decided to notify the civil power and rescue myself from my dreadful predicament by appealing to the Emperor....I managed to shout 'O' loudly and distinctly, but that was all; I was unable to pronounce the word 'Caesar'. My discordant bray so annoyed the bandits that they whacked and poked at my miserable hide until it felt hardly fit even to make one of those leather sieves for bolting corn.
Somatic jolts and intellectual stability -- two conflicting interpretations, to be sure, but perhaps also two extremes on the continuum of mid-eighteenth-century culture and aesthetics. But above all, it is in the specific formulation of violently clashing sounds as antidotes to ennui, in the perceived ability of dissonance to jolt bodies and at the same time keep in check the effects of such violence through aestheticization, that mid-eighteenth-century concepts of auditory perception transcended the obsolete aesthetics of affect and began to articulate a concept of the listener as an ego.
“I should have thought,” said Murphy, “that the radiator was secondary to the gas.”

He had brought the radiator to the garret, set it down on the floor and stood back to imagine it lit. Rusty, dusty, derelict, the coils of asbestos falling to pieces, it seemed to defy ignition. He went dismally away to look for gas.
He seemed illuminated by his discovery, but undecided: was he going to transform it into uncontrollable laughter, or into oratorical procedures?

"What an idiot I am!" said he, choosing the second course.
This seems a fairly plausible view of the status of the arts and sciences in human society. The occurrence of a supply independent of Corpus demands, its possibility or presence, is a question that the social limitations of our critical language prevent us from raising with any degree of humane intelligibility.
(And what is perfect English?) Its strange lurches of idiom and vocabulary remind us, as "A"-18 did, that dictionaries are poor guides to a language. "Overcome" in "have not / overcome the / age of / 35...." (p. 412) probably seemed a logical synonym for "attained."
Like a tropical storm,
I, too, may one day become "better organized."

Petropoulos, Elias. Songs of The Greek Underworld: The Rebetika Tradition. London, Saqi Books, 2000.
Apuleius, tr. Robert Graves.
The Transformations of Lucius Otherwise Known as The Golden Ass. NYC, Farrar Straus & Giroux, 1984.
Erlmann, Veit.
Reason and Resonance: A History of Modern Aurality. NYC, Zone Books, 2010.
Beckett, Samuel.
The Grove Centenary Edition: Volume 1: Novels. NYC, Grove Press, 2006.
Queneau, Raymond, tr. Barbara Wright.
The Sunday of Life. NYC, New Directions, 1977.
Riding, Laura, ed. Lisa Samuels.
Anarchism Is Not Enough. Berkeley, University of California Press, 2001.
Ahearn, Barry.
Zukofsky's "A": An Introduction. Berkeley, University of California Press, 1983.
Davis, Lydia.
The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis. NYC, Farrar Straus & Giroux, 2009.

Monday, November 9, 2009

occasionally at sea. In all such cases,

The feeling is first one of strongish love, then even stronger love, then slightly less love (though he is still loving, rather than hating), then extreme love, then suddenly quite a strong feeling of dislike, then love again, and then more or less mixed feelings. This series of alternating emotions will continue and, in fact, the emotional state varies chaotically.
We looked round, surprised at this interruption, for Short had apparently returned to his slumbers, but we now saw that he had emerged from the banner and was standing behind us, fully dressed (I discovered later on that he had discarded dressing and undressing as frivolous waste of time), a queer uncouth figure with his long touzled black hair and sallow, unhealthy face. He had a short clay pipe firmly set between his teeth, and his large lips were parted with a smile.
I bet that he won't tell you anything about what he does. He doesn't just write books, he is a professor of philosophy at the University of Vincennes; hence he does philosophy. No one has ever been quite sure what that consists of.
We would miss the pathos of authority in the era of high capitalism if we were to think so. Pullman went to great effort to offer his workers something more than a job. Throughout the 19th Century, paternalistic controls were similarly motivated by a desire to make personal, face-to-face contacts -- to make a community -- in an economic system always pulling people into paths of individual striving and mutual competition.
Even the colophons of the printers they relied on often reflected a desire not to attract potential customers to bookshops (as was the usual purpose of early colophons), but to distract officials and avoid fines or arrest. Products issued from "Utopia" and "Cosmopolis" helped to publicize these novel terms but also added to the sense of unreality and impracticality associated with the circulation of ideas.
"It isn't that we laugh because we hear these fine words," replied Parlamente. "But the fact is that everyone is inclined to laugh when they see somebody fall over or when somebody says something unintentional, as often happens, even to the most modest and best spoken of ladies, when they make a slip of the tongue and say one word instead of another.
You have seen
A rain of dried peas does not stick to a screen,
A non-stop reflector,
(Not the black sheet of a bed),
But an heroic
Which excretes and laughs.


These are not my sentiments,
Only sometimes does one feel that intimate.

                                                                    God, LL.D.,

I want to resign

1 - Richard J. Bird, chaos and life: complexity and order in evolution and thought. Columbia University Press (NYC), 2003.
2 - Isabel Meredith, A Girl Among The Anarchists. University of Nebraska Press (Lincoln), 1992.
3 - Jean-Francois Lyotard (tr. Bill Readings & Kevin Paul Geiman), Political Writings. University of Minnesota Press (Minneapolis), 1993.
4 - Richard Sennett, Authority. Knopf (NYC), 1980.
5 - Elizabeth L. Eisenstein, The Printing Revolution In Early Modern Europe. Cambridge University Press (NYC), 1997.
6 - Marguerite of Navarre, Story Fifty-Two, from Women Writers of the Renaissance and Reformation, ed. Katharina M. Wilson. University of Georgia Press (Athens), 1987.
7 - Louis Zukofsky, Complete Short Poetry. Johns Hopkins University Press (Baltimore), 1997.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

"shining constellation/ ... of / eyes, and again saw nothing."

shining constellation / each allusion / recognizes the silence / the scorching contiguity of the frantic / sex in this category / hardly ever humiliates / our living in hundreds of / eyes, and again saw nothing

It frequently happens, of course, in crowded harbors that more than two vessels are involved in an approaching situation. The same thing may even happen occasionally at sea. In all such cases, special circumstances may be deemed to exist the moment any of the vessels is prevented from obeying the usual rules.

This puts one beside oneself, this irritates and exasperates, and the language for saying it is exasperated. (It would be better to let another speak, and in a language that would remain, somewhat, on the side:7
"Laura the basilisk made entirely of asbestos, walking to the fiery stake with a mouth full of gum.
We quiver as we hear a voice, and what we are hearing and learning to love is a theory of the body. I, who can't carry a tune, am caught within this economy of vocal production as surely as if I were a singer.

"Red lines denote vocal sensations of soprano and tenor singers," writes Lilli Lehmann in How to Sing. Look at Lehmann's diagram of the singer: a ghoul, a skeleton, a survivor, shorn of identity's specifics.
Nothing but bread and dates and milk and coffee, and little enough of that. Often the bread runs short, and only dates and milk remain. It was a wild looking party that was gathered round the coffee pot. There's lots of negro blood in them, owing, I think, to their having negro slaves, one of whom was with them.
I kept an eye on her, though, without seeming to. After all, she was as unpredictable as I was. She could pick up a candlestick or a vase and hit me with it. And whip or no whip, I wasn't going to stand passively and let her really hurt me.

1-Captain Raymond F. Farwell, rev'd. Lieutenant Alfred Prunski, The Rules Of The Nautical Road. United States Naval Institute (Annapolis), 1954.
2-Jean-Luc Nancy, ed. Peter Connor, The Inoperative Community. University of Minnesota Press (Minneapolis), 1991.
3-Wayne Koestenbaum, The Queen's Throat: Opera, Homosexuality and the Mystery of Desire. Vintage (NYC), 1993.
4-The Letters of Gertrude Bell, edited by Lady Bell. Penguin (Harmondsworth), 1939.
5-Octavia E. Butler, Kindred. Beacon (Boston), 1988.

Friday, July 24, 2009

seem / rhymeless / minutes, / especially / continued.

Silence, a black abyss, a turbulent void. And in the midst of the turbulence (Katasia having withdrawn) there suddenly loomed an irresistible, shining constellation of mouths, with two mouths unquestionably related to each other.
Gesture by gesture, as if idea by idea, the drama is built up. The audience watches for each allusion in turn; it follows point by point. The interest becomes like that of a detective story.
The phone rings and rings and rings and then someone picks up. Jeremy recognizes the silence on the other end. “Everybody came over and fell asleep,” he whispers. “That’s why I’m whispering.”
…and in sleep, being for the time dissociated from the characterizing mind, which at other times employed it for its outer vehicle or agent, it spontaneously sought escape from the scorching contiguity of the frantic thing, of which, for the time, it was no longer an integral.
The phonebook – already so outmoded as to be a relic – is an (almost impenetrably) concrete example of how a specific technology effects a printed text. Basic capitalism spawned ‘seedier’ aspects of phone communication: scams, sales, solicitations (though I wouldn’t place phone sex in this category).
Instead of a site of domination and surrender, the body of the dance partner becomes a site – or rather, a point of reference – for association and coordination. This is the “deindividualizing” principle (Jelavich, 179ff.) of the kick-lines which conquer the revue stages, transforming the individual bodies of the “girls” into complex systems of well-coordinated limbs. [see Revues] This is also why the role of the gigolo does not turn into a role of surrender and therefore hardly ever humiliates male gender-pride.
We could earn our living in hundreds of ways, why got it from killing animals? Any foods can fill our stomach, why took the risk of incarnation by consuming meats? Why don’t we become a vegetarian from now on?
I lowered my eyes, and again saw nothing but a little hand on the tablecloth, a double mouth with double lips, innocent and yet corrupt, pure and yet evil and darting, I gazed at it intently, gasping for breath, whereupon the whole place suddenly started swarming with hands, Leo’s and Fuchs’s and Kulka’s and Louis’s, a whole multitude of hands were being agitated in the air. What on earth could this be? It was a wasp. A wasp had flown into the room.

1 - Witold Gombrowicz (tr. Eric Mosbacher), Cosmos. Grove (NYC), 1970.
2 - Edwin Denby (ed. Robert Cornfield), Dance Writings and Poetry. Yale (New Haven), 1998.
3 - Kelly Link, Pretty Monsters. Viking (NYC), 2008.
4 - Herman Melville (ed. Charles Child Walcutt), Moby Dick. Bantam (NYC), 1981.
5 - Emily Beall, The Communicative Contract For Telemarketers: One Section Of The Phonebook. (Brooklyn), 2009.
6 - Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht, In 1926: Living At The Edge Of Time. Harvard (Cambridge), 1997.
7 - [Unknown Author], The True Stories Of Cause & Effect. Shing Tak Temple (Queens), 2008?.
8 - [see 1]