Friday, May 16, 2014

From limen to lintel.

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[This is another story of failure really; having been unable even to find any context for Pierre Reverdy's aphorism. So then ... more unsafe thinking.]

Pablo Picasso: Saltimbanques/Acrobats, 1905.Pierre Reverdy.Amedeo Modigliani: Pierre Reverdy, 1915.Pierre Reverdy.Pierre Reverdy.

Benett: Porta/Door.The OED admits a confusion: 'limen' directly from Latin = ‘threshold’; and 'lintel' (indirectly) from Latin 'limit' = 'boundary'.

Every stimulus must reach a certain intensity before any appreciable sensation results. This point is known as the threshold or liminal intensity. And some of us are just impatient with every boundary, above and below. (See also 'Gravity's Rainbow'.)

Might as well throw in 'lumen' = 'light' or 'opening' as long as we're in the neighbourhood, and 'lamina' = 'layer' but which might be stretched to 'crack'.

"There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in." (Leonard Cohen)

The thing about 'the secret' is that when you're young you don't need it and by the time you've got it it's no use to you.

Euphony: some sounds feel better than others. 'Præcox' appeals to me particularly. Some common applications:

dementia præcox (primarily schizophrenia);

ejaculatio præcox, running on to: hymen (a digression - or is it?), virgo intacta, proprieties, & correctitude - a crowded nexus;

senium præcox (aka Alzheimer's - 'i before e except after c', not). Senium is mostly just 'old', also feeble or frail but without pejorative - so consider how superior it is to describe the condition, Alz' just being someone's name. 'Early onset Alz'' then, is simply no match for 'senium præcox', doesn't even come close.

See also: apricot, princock, precocious &c.

Terry Gilliam: Brazil.

That exquisite moment at the end of Terry Giliam's 'Brazil' when the torturers exhaust Sam Lowry/Jonathan Pryce's imagination and the diorama runs out. Compared with, say, blogging.

Another euphonic one is 'perfidy', enmity, perfidious Albion ... la perfide Albion, das perfide Albion, la perfida Albione ... Long live Bobby Sands!

Purposefully rebarbative you see (this blog that is), cunningly designed to give you every opportunity to opt out gentle reader.

Little Jack Horner sat in a corner
Eating Christmas pie.
He stuck in his thumb and pulled out a plum
And said, "What a good boy am I."

Georges Lemaitre.

And then ... 'amity' (having taken the long way round to it).

Two ideas:
1) Pierre Reverdy's aphorism, epigram, whatever: « Il n'y a pas d'amour, il n'y a que des preuves d'amour. » / 'There is no love, there are only proofs of love.'

2) Time viewed as 'human coin'. (Which came to me thanks to my erstwhile friend Georges Lemaitre.)
Now, here's the exercise: Put'em together (if you're able to) and whadd'ya get?

A metric for love! Not exclusive, not the only proof, but one that can be, at least approximately, measured.

Another approach, quite independent, in Ivan Illich's take on the story of the Good Samaritan and his focus on the single word in Luke's version of it: saw (in the phrase "and when he saw him", Luke 10:33).

Yet another in Wolfram von Eschenbach's 'Parzival': "What ails thee?"

Time, interest, attention, care; all measurable in a way and to a degree.

Alberto Giacometti: Pierre Reverdy, ~1960.Alberto Giacometti: Pierre Reverdy, ~1960.Pierre Reverdy.Pierre Reverdy.Pablo Picasso: Saltimbanques/Acrobats, 1905.

Piraro: Karl Rove & Plato.

"Just the place for a Snark!" the Bellman cried,
As he landed his crew with care;
Supporting each man on the top of the tide
By a finger entwined in his hair.

"Just the place for a Snark! I have said it twice:
That alone should encourage the crew.
Just the place for a Snark! I have said it thrice:
What I tell you three times is true."

Beware ...

        the Ides of March;

        the Ancient Mariner if you happen
            to run into him;

        Betty Johnson's 'Little Blue Man'
            taken from either viewpoint;

... a-and ... oh yes ...

        lonesome hearted lovers with
            too personal a tale.
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