not a pretty picture. not a good. not a bad. picture. but an argument.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

man



"In conclusion:

   no progress, not the slightest step forward, rather instead some retreating, and nothing but repetitions.

   No true thinking. Nothing but moods; ever less coherent changing moods; nothing but bits, scraps of life, apparent thoughts, fragments rescued from a debacle or worsening it. Scattered moments, broken off days, scattered words, because a hand touched a stone colder than cold.

   Distant from dawn, indeed.

   All the same, this cannot be left unsaid..."

from And, Nonetheless: Selected Prose and Poetry 1990-2009, Philippe Jaccottet p.359

12 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. thank you, ne ne. i don't often take photographs of strangers. i would like to but i feel horribly about it. this man ended up seeing me too. i was mortified. and there was nowhere to hide. i was in my drive way!

      xo
      erin

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  2. looking out of the window, these cold mornings of deep autumn, foggy mornings, my thoughts all fuzzy, nothing coherent, bits of the past resurfacing, fragments, as he says - and yet i love this state of mind, the warmth of my own body leaning against the window, a quiet and strange feeling of satisfaction, of fulfillment inside, as if none of this mattered, just being there, almost-being there, because so much of myself floats in an in-between world i can't put into words...

    (i turn and smile at you, gently, knowing you are there)

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    1. yes, roxana, i agree with you. it is a satisfying feeling, fulfillment inside of the impossibility of fulfillment. somehow jacottet's words might seem more desolate against this photograph, but i don't believe that was his intention. certainly it was not how i received him. i was so pleased, so relieved, even impressed. such a formidable mind working and working toward perfecting his acknowledgement of ignorance. i'm sure i laughed and clapped when i first read it.

      and against this impossibility, no matter how ignorant, man must say, must create, must make present, not to change, or articulate precisely, but to be, to be to be to be (w)hol(e)y present.

      yes, roxana, i am here. you're impossibly beautiful by the window, impossible for you to be any other)))

      xo
      erin

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  3. Ah, the deep beauty of this confession. We have to witness what we are, no more, no less.

    Thank you. As always, the photo vibrates out all that is in the words. Each and every time I feel more connected with the earth, with humanity, with Life.

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    1. and ruth, thank god he confesses. thank god there is such brilliance, as though to reveal the real and rightful perforations of man, is to shine the light through and illuminate all of us. i urge you to buy his notebooks. his voice is ... so extraordinarily ordinary. it so often feels as though he is articulating my own wounds. and strengths. neither of them mutually exclusive.

      xo
      erin

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  4. This hurts my heart...so true, though. (It is so difficult for me not to be erin...) xo

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    1. marion, it hurts and raises us up, frees us. where are we in a hurry to get to? what knowledge might we acquire? what might that knowledge afford us?

      (i think you've just kissed my shoulders in what you write. i can't imagine anyone more beautiful than li-young lee. i'm ... difficult.)

      xo
      erin

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    2. Oh, Erin, you are so not difficult. I read your "Scrim" this morning and wept like a baby for an hour. I wanted to hug you and your precious, holy son...After reading it aloud to Ray, I said, "I wish I could see through Erin's eyes for one day". And he nodded his head saying that your heart is a true poet's heart. Then I thought, "Wouldn't it be a different world if we could ALL see through each others' eyes for a minute or two?" You understand, right? I know you're as human and fallible as the rest of us poor flesh and bone creatures, but you see the world so, so.....other, and you express it so beautifully. Thank you for being true to yourself and for sharing your truth. I'm still trying to learn to do that, to be true to my own truth. Love you, my friend. xo

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    3. marion, if you could have seen the pure look of wonder in my son's eyes. awe! and of course it wasn't me that was beautiful but the world was beautiful because of light. but you know this, you get this, which is why the poem means anything at all to you, and i can see (and am grateful) that it does.

      and then! (as things happen) ...and then i heard someone on a radio lit. program use the word scrim. and i was so delighted. so elevated. by this word. words are light also. for me the word itself stands behind the paltry poem and illuminates, makes everything holy. how grateful i was that i heard the word later in the same day, as though the world were trying to tell me something specific. i just needed to listen.

      you and ray. god, you make me smile))))

      xo
      erin

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    4. and oh, i think this is one of the best practices! - to try to imagine what it is to be another...

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"Words at the limit of hearing, attributable to no one, received in the conch of the ear like dew by a leaf." (philippe jaccottet) or even a quiet presence is appreciated))