Stochastic Bookmark

abstruse unfinished commentary

about correspondence


Forward to new address

So no sooner do I generalize from one text than the next reparticularizes the notion: in this case, Robert Pinget's Between Fantoine and Agapa (in Trio), itself pocket philately cancelled in French villages, a terrain common to his writing. Per Updike: "Literary experiment and surrealism have certain natural channels into which to run, it would appear, not so unlike the well-worn grooves of realism; nonsense, being an inversion of sense, is condemned to share a certain structure with it, and a finitude of forms." Fair enough; after the fact, Pinget prefaces his first prose book: "I would like to add that this gratuitous game is here coupled with a mystifying game which gives it an appearance of serious, or let's say, secret, truth ... What more can I say? This: this little volume contains in embryo all the forms taken by my later work." (Something of Eleutheria, Beckett's first play in French, here). Vignettes and journal entries; from the former, binding more tightly to my prior post:
Something that must be taken literally is language. We never think more than we express. People who never say anything are play-actors. I mistrust "eloquent silences." You think you're understood by someone who confines himself to adopting a thoughtful attitude after your remarks: ninety-nine times out of a hundred, if you do nevertheless get him to say something, you see that he hasn't understood a word.
Language also consists of interjections such as: ah! oh! ee! These are enough for me, for each one implies a whole world of astonishment, admiration, reproach, etc.
There are exceptions to this law, but no one takes any notice of minorities these days. They're quite right. Let those who can't speak, write. In books, the rule is reversed. When a fellow writes: "In the beginning was the word," you may be quite sure that he doesn't know what he's talking about.
The more hesitant and involved a text is, the more profound its author is likely to be. A style, in fact, is a technique.
This preamble has no meaning. It's my excuse for beginning this story as follows:

(Opening of "The Casket"; I've already read Passacaille; That Voice remains.)


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