2 sept. 2010

Finishing my commentary on Varela's Libro de barro.

XIX "You rang the empty bell three times and nobody responded." Can you still make music in the absence of human throat and ear? Can you "translate silence." In other words, what is at stake here are the grounds of communication. The speaker call for god to exist and to illuminate an imaginary cavern, a blue darkness.

XX The newly born moon is a "mutilated ear of silver." The speaker and an unnamed oyente are unable to hear the music, and there is a goddess who is somehow inaccessible.

XXI We've shared a table, sat down at the table, but not at the same time. So experience is shared, but not communicated. "I don't know how to give names to these things." The sequence as an urgent, anguished tone at this point. The last three poems have been about missed chances for communion.

XXII This next to the last poem, rather than the last poem, feels like a conclusive ending to the sequence. The poem is defined as an attempt to find "the border between what isn't and what won't be." The specifically female imagery (blood between nubile legs) is surprising, since only a few poems have identified the sex of writing up to this point.

XXIII No more "anecdotes." "These were its [your life's] letters.

Now that I've taken these very sketchy notes I can write a bit about this book in a chapter I'm writing. What I've discovered here is that Varela is closer to Gamoneda than to Valente.