Speech in opposition to looking –
The violence that speech can do to a thing struck me one night on the way home from a bad poetry reading. I wrote:
The other evening I watched a poet read from a book he’d written. The poem described a series of long walks around London and for poetic effect made connections between moments that had passed on these walks. There was poetry in the language and words got stuck to themselves and stopped.
On the train on the way home I looked out of the window at barbed wire and the late sunshine on a roof. It made me imagine a sentence about barbed wire and the late sunshine on a roof, and I regretted doubling the view onto itself. I wished the poet could have transmitted the walks without the poem, or the poem without the poetry or better still, had not transmitted the walks at all, not even to himself. I’d like him to have just walked, and even that by accident. (more…)