Stochastic Bookmark

abstruse unfinished commentary

about correspondence


Stoical Rejection

Sudden, ingenious ideas that were partly expressed in exactly the right words and that could have been raised into monuments -- but disconnected, in need of articulation ... And my will wouldn't collaborate if it had to have aesthetics as a partner and couldn't leave the thoughts in isolated paragraphs of a potential story -- just a bunch of sentences that sounded striking but that would only really have been striking if I'd written the story in which they were expressive moments, pithy observations, linking phrases ... Some were witty sayings, ingenious but unintelligible without the surrounding text that was never written.
-- Fernando Pessoa, The Education of the Stoic: the only manuscript of the Baron of Teive

Precisely the problem with this slender read, or perhaps not quite; the difficulties of elaborating an essayist who disdains to essay may be intractable. Two years delayed in release, the Baron's complete works add little more to the excerpts previously provided in Zenith's Selected Prose of Fernando Pessoa (which, along with Fernando Pessoa & Co. and The Book of Disquiet, are essential); the fragments do not cohere, even with supporting (con)text, and the effort ends up as inferior to the Decadents even as the Baron is sublimated out of existence (as is the wry humor with which Pessoa's other heteronyms are presented). Only for hardcore Pessoans. (But among the supporting texts is a brief newspaper article on the person from Porlock, living within each of us -- but now I must attend to other business.)


Post a Comment

<< Home