Thursday, December 19, 2013

"Xantha Street"

"Xantha Street" is what gets me.  Kees has the "angels rise" but it's "on page 289" and even though this is done "splendidly" and "to Heaven", nevertheless "the evening still comes on."  

I go back to that idea again and again of the odd detail or the minor or mundane particular that in a moment takes over the whole scene.  Roland Barthes described this as the punctum and Mieke Bal as the navel, among others.  

"The climate of murder hastens newer weeds" and death's all around, you're "frantic, but proud of penmanship.  Beasts howl outside; / Authorities, however, keep the pavements clean." 

What's that slide that takes place in existence from what's taken to be important to what's not so that what's not entirely trumps the other and then becomes what is?  See page 289.  Feel the evening come on.  Note the penmanship and pavement.  Ponder the bellybutton and laugh, or get the point.  Your own point as you see it, a Barthian punctum amidst the studium.  -bbc 


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