Thanksgiving Is Ruined
March 23, 2007
off-line/in print: on sleep & absence
It must be from sleep that we get our sense of being here and not being here, of losing ourselves and finding ourselves, of absence and return;
They print a six-part "Symposium on Sleep." Phillips' contribution is not only the most non-sleep inducing of the six parts, but it's thankfully on-line, for free.
[The other best moment in the symposium is Dean Young's great line:The Surrealists thought that sleeping was the only way to wake up.]
I like the above because Phillips suggests that our entire understanding of the ontology of everything, of being & non-being, of ones & zeroes, of off & on (not to mention of subject/object), comes about because we are creatures who have to sleep.
Imagine -- here is a mouse. Imagine -- the mouse is running across a stone. Now, erase the stone. Then, erase the mouse. What is left -- will be a flickering. And this will be POETRY.
Kutik seems to be giving a wonderfully pithy precis of Vvedensky:
Let a mouse run over a stone. Count only its every step. Only forget the word every, only forget the word step. . . .
This causes a very weak combination of memory cells somewhere in the back of my brain to itch. Something I read once, by Tzara? Breton? By a Situationist? Something like:
You are at the theater. The show has just ended. You stand up. You turn around. But your coat is gone. Your umbrella is gone. You look up. The audience is gone. The seats are gone. The theater is gone.
Where the heck did I read that? Or did I merely imagine it? Or combine multiple partial memories into something that never existed at all, until now?