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Saturday, December 22, 2012

Lorca quote of the day

‎"I understand all poetics; I could talk about all of them if I didn’t change my mind every five minutes. I don’t know. Someday I could really like bad poetry, like the way I (we) madly love bad music. I will burn the Parthenon at night so I can start erecting it again in the morning and never finish it."

Lorca could really save me from my dogmatism, even from my dogmatism about his own work!

The "horizon" of interpretation can mean two things in hermeneutics. We could think of it as a kind of finitude: we see up to there, and no further. We are limited by our time and place, our prejudices and preconditions.

More optimistically, as Lorca says, "in eternity we will receive the reward of not having had horizons." There is no absolute such as thing as a horizon, because we never reach it. It is an imaginary line in the distance, that, as we move along, shifts with us, as Gadamer in his old age explained to Derrida.

We are radically who we are, where we are, and nothing more. There is sense of limitation, as in Robert Creeley's poetry. The sense where Creeley's "fact" that if it is Saturday it is only Saturday, that life must be lived in its temporal concreteness, intersects with the facticity of Heidegger's "thrownness." At the same time, what makes this realization poignant is the imagination of it being otherwise. I constantly have the thought of "why am I me?" Why am I the person I have to carry around and take care of all the time. Why am I thrown into this particular life? It seems rather arbitrary that I am alive and myself. Without this consciousness of the strangeness of it all, the Dasein becomes rather trivial. Maybe that's where Rilke's untranslated world comes in. You think that you would rather be like an animal, just fully present in the moment at all times. But isn't it better to aspire to that and never reach that particular horizon? To experience that gap? We might call it the gap between Creeley and Rilke.

That's why I hate Lorca criticism that tries to find the key to understanding everything in one particular factor. I can be against reductionism and still open minded.

This post is what I have to write tomorrow as a few actual paragraphs of my book. By writing it I have discovered the existential reason for writing this book. I have always thought that the subject of poetry is just this: the sense of awe at being alive at all. If my critical work is informed by that, then I will be fine.


Thomas said...

Yes, and you remind us that this is an important subject. There must be an art of this awe of existence. We must maintain some articulateness about it.

Anonymous said...

poesia: "as nossas vidas, passadas a limpo"