The Sunday Tunnel: about This world and the Other
[Continues from here.]
Technically it’s a Monday but Jesus died in order for me to be able to call it Sunday. There is such a thing called serendipity (yes, it’s a thing, you can even kick it around although you don’t need a garden to do it in and it will not break windows – it could break hearts though, he added mellowly). I am reading Kripke and although that is not strictly a proof for what I just said, it does lend it – all in all and as per the below – more plausibility.
“She preferred me to begin at the base of her neck. I preferred to begin a bit higher up, on the shoreline of her hair. With my right forefinger slanted slightly to bring the nail into play, I would inscribe the course of a river – so gently, so slowly, it might have been a tear’s trail – running its convoluted way the length of Lou’s back, semicircling a buttock, and concluding in her crack, at a fulfillment one might call a delta.” (ibid., p. 554-555)
What joy is this which ends in mere tranquility?“Well, my language gives the game away. Orgasms pass more quickly than most pleasures. Last less than a length of licorice. Only illusions remain. The great moment is but a string of grunts. (..) Language is always honest. Language does not lie, only its users. I think barrel suckers say that about guns. Notice how ‘lover’ is mostly spelled by ‘over’ and ‘sex’ is two-thirds ‘ex’. If fucking were pretty it would have a pretty name, like ‘meadow’, like ‘gazelle, or ‘paramour’. If fucking were so fundamental, then it would bind us more dearly and devotedly together, as its gestures pretend, instead of driving us away from one another, into our own close satisfactions or the sullen distance of our discontents.” (ibid., p. 560)
This most definitely from this world. The other, quoted before, from the other. The former lengthy, crude – abbreviated with a cruel (..) for illustration; the latter floating and through its bitterness somewhat sweet. What unites them but some element of serendipity? And, enter Saul, can serendipity be necessary?
Let’s see (a long meandering quote this one):
“Rivering was a recovery of composure, a return to normalcy, the revival of connection; for a river has a course which natural laws exist to determine, and a goal – that same mingle in the sea we call climax – and a renewal, too, when the hand which holds the finger returns the tip to the foothills of the head in order to begin again: the Chattahoochee maybe.
The Chattahoochee tickles.
The irony is – and ‘irony’ has ‘iron’ in it like a bar – that the transcendence some lovers feel they have attained in their most melting moments, their triumph over biology, over merely doing the soggydoggy, is more than a fugitive and futile illusion, for this lie – which suggests that you together have overcome lust – this falsehood is the unhappiest of merry hee-haws, since your screwing servers fertility first, foremost, and finally – the f-word knows who its kin (other fatuous fictions) are – yes, the crude and common action, which it so appropriately names, fosters only progeny; it aids, it abeds, that most common of miracles: kids.
After the kids came, Martha no longer did.” (ibid., p. 562)
This river of words ends in this last filthy sentence which, like a crack, connects the other world with this one. Hell, but is it not also the other way around (if the mind is connected though not to be equated with the body, shouldn’t the body be likewise different but connected to the mind?). The rivers suggest as much even if they end at not in the crack.
“Naming is the first condition of history. Repetition is the second. My finger forms a familiar line. Naming is knowing, all right, because the name is what we know.
So what. Lou left. There was no more garden for my rivers to irrigate.” (ibid., p. 563)
That’s his problem; Kohler’s problem, Gass’ problem, who knows, who cares? When the body cannot get back to the mind, i.e. when this world does not affect the other, then the mind gets stuck in its own other world and that’s just as healthy as getting thrown into the hole. Long term isolation just breeds that most common of tragedies: disappointment.
“I preferred to buy candies which were wrapped, not just because I loved the wrapping, which I saved when I could, but also because I liked to study each piece, arranging them in rows, in more complex configurations, concealing them in innocuous little boxes, and hiding these about my room with the uncanny skill of a secret agent. From such unseen places they emitted an energy only I could intercept, and I fed on them in this fictional fashion before I finally swallowed them, which I did eventually, consuming only one at a time, however, and at decent intervals, never as a feast, an orgy of incontinence, a vulgar glut. In fact, although each time, before my purchase, I imagined them all in my mouth at once, pornographically commingled and surmounted, one by another, I had to force myself to eat them before the end of the week arrived, when I would acquire, as was my comforting and oppressive habit, a fresh batch.” (ibid., p. 573)
The operative words being “only I” – only I, only I. Restraint is what undoes us all. We are taught restraint by those who are restrained and who make us make pleasure into an appointment thus leading us straight, and so very unlike rivers, to disappointment. We construct our private language which requires us to split our personality such that we can live in our world, our other world, where only I exist to damn the others. Even sweets we make sour.
“Thus the pain which pleasure is accused of covering up – such pains of the spirit as melancholy, helplessness, ennui, which can fill life like an atmosphere, all the hurts of the unloved, the loneliness of rented rooms, the emptiness of the stored bowl, tarnish on an idle knife – are themselves a response to the fact that life without candy’s secondary pleasures (..) is bleaker than the moon (..) so we all require a spoon or two of sugar to sugar the sour truth that sugar is a necessity, that simple sufficiency is insufficient, that most prizes feel like penalties (..)” (ibid., p. 576-577)
However depressing that may be it is an effect and the cause lies exactly one quote ahead: only I. First there is a splitting of the mind and the body and then the mind starts craving bodies. It can be filled like a leaky barrel with water, water and more water, endlessly, without satisfaction. Dualism has it wrong, and its offspring – materialism and idealism, yeah, both – have it even so much wronger.
And this is where it leads, aunts like Lucy Pimber: virtuous, restrained and capable of supporting the worst violence as it will never live up to the violence they imagined in getting even. Charity compels us to understand them even if charity is the very concept they will rape in the ass given a chance by mentioning the word without using its principle.
“Do what you want; I won’t argue, I won’t resist, but I won’t change. She was stubborn in the way she maintained her privacy. It drove both of us bananas.” (ibid., p. 589)
Only I, privacy, restraint and – add a pinch of salt – merit – to make it last. Their other world is underground like a maze of tunnels which do not intersect: each aunt of the same polarity until there is a bigger cause – a person to follow – a magnet and then it explodes in this world. The root cause not being the person to follow but the followers who are ready for him – who knows, next time, her; that would at least be some kind of progress in hell, a she-devil.
“Her employers would be anxious to be rid of her, yet they would feel guilty, too, for she had served them well – wouldn’t they have to think? – over many years, unstintingly, without complaint; moreover – wouldn’t they have to believe? – she had become impossible by inadvertence, not by design, by dint of her devotion. Yes, that discomfort would produce, I thought, a lot of praise.” (ibid., p. 594)
And this is how the root cause takes root, by merit and by guilt about its innocence. We need to eliminate those minds by connecting them back to their bodies because if they have it their way they will eliminate our bodies to be sure they’re rid of our minds.
Too long this, remember the masturbation metaphor, we were close to coming and then hideousness popped up in this – my – mind and it left me pulling harder until the skin hurt which made everything soften up. Who wants to fuck the other world when this world is still like that?
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