Sunday, May 23, 2010

from this proposition it will follow ... that 1 + 1 = 2; or; how to select a book (& other thoughfragments)

theorem 54.43 from Principia Mathematica; Bertrand Russell & Alan North Whitehead

i'm feeling light lately. i get this thing in my head sometimes, when i think of the discontented in the world - those of us who have no real reason to fear or lament or... dwell but do anyway - sometimes i think it's the tail-end of memories we don't remember but miss the feeling of. those of us who remember being angels, or being fantasies in the minds of our mothers, or dew drops that entertained some god who thought it fit to pass a lightbeam through us, fragment it into colours, tie the red part into a heart, kiss the blue twice for eyes, enlarge enlarge enlarge, voila.

poetry aside, i think it's humility. i'm feeling very life-sized right now. not too smart, not too fit. not too talented, not too extraordinary. just...

___and i think, this humility, this sense of perception, where you see right-side-up-proportions, and think yourself very good at the things you're good at and very good at being bad at the things you're bad at and in all cases very good at tumbling along and doing your best when you're good at doing your best and very good at not doing your best when you're good at doing not your best, makes everything seem a little quieter.
___and i think, maybe humility is a sense of satisfaction with one's affairs in the sense that, one's wardrobe and test results and driving ability feel very natural. it's a sense of absorption, to absorb the this's and thats of life. i am this. fine, sure.

if it wasn't for all the dichotomy and duality you find in nature and science i'd find the whole essence of humility rather odd. thankfully, it fits right in - that humility, so often seen as a weakness, is in fact, so great a strength. anybody who's met a sincerely humble person will know what i mean.


this is different for different people. because you might hear something thrown around and not flinch, or you might hear Homer mentioned twice and think must work that out. you do, and you come to know about the Odyssey, Iliyad. you might come to know about Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious by Jung or the Language of the Eye by Kandinsky or the Seven Valleys by Bahá'u'lláh.

you read these things because, in a sense, you ought to. because you, as a person alive right now, has the weight of Socrates and Plutarch and Marx and Tolstoy holding you up. it is an inheritance, and you owe it to your grandfathers Nabokov and Shakespeare and Kant and to your grandmothers Sappho and Woolf and the always charming Austen to share a cup of tea with them and listen to the things they need to tell you.

this can be broken down into subcategories. for example topical interest. i'm presently very curious about the use of language to persuade others. this is related to an ongoing interest in body language, the dynamics of courtship, and 'reading people'. this might be because i'm not naturally the most perceptive individual - so it fascinates me. so i read a book on persuasion. on negotiation tactics. on mechanisms that entice people one way or the other, and why particular phrases should hold more appeal for us than others.
___about a year ago i was fascinated by the GFC and was reading about stock markets and global economic trends. maybe you're presently curious about Truman Capote, which my GF is, and she's gobbling him up.

there are things you want to read not because they're topical, but because they're an ongoing concern of yours. a particular interest in a topic (Archaic Athens), personage you have an affinity for (Winston Churchill), or a writer who fascinates you (Kafka, Hesse, Woolf).

fear and trembling - don't ask me why that title continues to... entrap me. i must know what it's about, what's in it. a few months ago it was Civilization and Its Discontents. before that it was this little tiny book called the abridged pocket book of lightning which thrilled me enough to find extremely loud and incredibly close.

it's the same with poetry i think. lots of times you read something, it makes no sense to you. not really anyway. it's just some words, but... they appeal to you. it's like seeing someone you have a little crushy-crushy on from the other side of the room. who knows why. you just think i want to speak to him(er.


when semester starts, ___& these pills are its horsemen,
speeds and ___s l o w s

___and i drift , ___and think in very clear lines ___(except for when i can't

and am fooled into believing
i :___am silence , ___a vital organ of this room ___, a gravitational anomaly
who: ___speaks as moonlight, ___as dreamscape ___as background

who: orbits who knows what ___housed inside a book somewhere

and am fooled into (forgetting)?(misplacing)?(displacing)?(misjudging)?(miscalculating)?
______things i no longer know the names of. _(
______and could not know i'd lost
______but for the hissss of their ghosts

_________when i wake up
_________i'll call Winter 'Spring'
_________and ask if i'm older or new
_________since i'm starting from scratch.


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