I agree with most of this, but I do not think a brush stroke is analogous
because the temporality of written language is in its sequenced placement
in lines, not in the time of creating it. A brush stroke is not in lines. Hence
the attempt to defeat this with concrete poetry. But even that is limited and
often contrived. The only synthetic language I could comment on is
German, and it is true that sequence is less fundamental to meaning, but
nonetheless there are correct sequences. So the word on the page and
the painting are not spatially comparable. I have no idea how a genuinely
different language system like Chinese would fit here.
Date sent: Thu, 29 Mar 2001 09:16:07 -0700
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From: "Richard Seddon" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Form in TWL
You and Nancy are right; language has sequence and therefore is
temploral. That said; Images (with a big "I") are not language. They are
invoked by charged language but are themselves beyond language. It is in
the Image (big "I") that temporality may be interrupted. Not always; in
Vorticism, movement within the Image (big "I") is essential. Sequencing
of Images may recreate temporality but if the Images are properly
juxtaposed the poet may be able to form ideograms of them that are lacking
in a time sense. I do not want to make to much of the potential lack of
temporality within an Image. I do not think that it is essential to
Imagism or to the ideogrammic method , though after a brief search I was
unable to find an example of Vorticism within the ideogrammic method.
One last thing though. Think of a brush stroke in a painting. The brush
stroke is created in time. It has a beginning to its creation and an end.
After the brush stroke is made it is now timeless. Our mind fits it and
the brush stroke next to it into a montage of meaning where the montage
becomes the perception and the brush strokes fade in perception though
still there. As our mind works around the painting sequencially and
therefore is back in time we add more and more of these montages together
until, snap, in a single perception we see a little boy in a blue suit,
timeless and in one perception. The brush stroke now no longer has much
BTW word order in some languages is not so important. In an inflected
language a noun has negative or positive referrents within it that tell us
whether it is an object or a subject. A verb likewise has referrents to
let us know when(time!) its action(time!) takes place. It is not
sequence within the language that creates the time sense but rather the
word itself. One wonders why the ideogrammic method was developed
non-inflected language. Of course the developer was absolutely
confortable in a variety of inflected and non-inflected languages.
A final BTW. Nancy asked about timesense in the word "stone".
:>) Much of Fenollosa, and Pound for that matter, does not hold up under
close, deductive :>), examination. A subject well explored by critics of
"Cathay" and gurus of various flavors.
comfortable in West Texan and New Mexican only
McIntosh, NM, USA
From: Rickard Parker <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Thursday, March 29, 2001 5:05 AM
Subject: Re: Form in TWL
>Most writing is linear. A is before B is before C. Compare TWL to a
>collage where any given image is next to a number of others and in an
>excellent work of art any two pieces may influence how one looks at the
>other. If a picture of a mother and child appears next to a war scene
>one might think the placing was a contrast between war and peace while
>another might see it as the sacrifice that may be needed to protect the
>family. The placing of another image next to those two may change the
>thoughts yet again. Examine some of the ways that Eliot manages to get
>us to see different images all at once. Ambiguity of the way to read a
>line is one. Having line X remind us of an earlier line Q and then
>influence the way we read line Y is another.
> Rick Parker
>P.S. - An inside joke for a few listers: I'm getting ready for the movie
>preparing to audition for the part of Phlebas.