Thursday, May 20, 2010

What surprises me is . . .

the mass of caring I have toward an object,

any object--it can be big or small . . .

emotion clings to it--I need it

must have it

it defines me--

and then, after a period of time . . .

it can be three months, a day, or a half-hour

the object

does not hold the mysteries to my desires anymore.

What a strange feeling!

to go from a state of anxiety, of constant worry over a thing

to not wanting it at all--

seeming indifference, nonchalance . . .

what happened?

what happened in the mind?

I'm reading Eugenio Montale's Cuttlefish Bones, translated by William Arrowsmith. Here is the first poem in the volume:

Rejoice when the breeze that enters the orchard
brings you back the tidal rush of life:
here, where dead memories
mesh and founder,
was no garden, but a reliquary.

That surge you hear is no whir of wings,
but the stirring of the eternal womb.
Look how this strip of lonely coast
has been transformed: a crucible.

All is furor within the sheer wall.
Advance, and you may chance upon
the phantasm who might save you:
here are the tales composed and deeds
annulled, for the future to enact.

Find a break in the meshes of the net
that tightens around us, leap out, flee!
Go, I have prayed for your escape--now my thirst
will be slaked, my rancor less bitter . . .


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3 comments:

caprifoglio said...

Glad that you escaped that stifling space from before. As for objects, hmmm. Some things that I make, I know that I am going to give away. Others, I have every intention of keeping so I don't forget. Things I don't make - really no reason to hold on to, but somehow I do. Till that is, I need white space.

Lethe said...

This meditation wasn't really about object I make, more about my obsessions . . . where you say "things I don't make" is what I'm talking about . . . and white space is right, we need the space to breathe, to live.

Lethe

caprifoglio said...

Yes, definitely understood your gist when I read your post. Just relating - for me, objects do grow emotional tendrils of a sort, but what is stranger is that thought about the object is potentially more powerful than the object itself. In other words, you can be miles away from it, and it can still be with you. This applies to something you make, as well as something you don't. In your head, they're one and the same. Anyway, as someone who creates things you can touch or hold, the whole idea of which is more powerful in generating or keeping that attachment, the creation, or the thought that the creation generates - it's something to ponder. But when you get rid of that object, or "object," it's startling when you realize how much power you gave it, how the story about it you yourself invented took on a life of its own in your head and your heart... and really, you didn't need it to live, it just somehow fit a need at a certain time.