The Price of Revelation

 

All I know is that there is a door.

I don’t know where the door is exactly, but the one thing that gives me hope is knowning that whatever is on the other side of it, is nothing like anything on this side. It may be better, worse or else entirely different. Also, I am convinced that being unable to anticipate the pain is precisely what makes the prospect of opening it so terrifying.

Then again, that’s probably because I don’t really understand, can’t really understand, the insignificance of the imagined price to pay for the ἀποκάλυψις.

Still, it’s an exit. Or an entrance.

I can almost touch it now.

 

 

• • •

Vultures

 

It’s difficult to admit that we all, without exception, regardless of how certain we are of the purity of our intentions, have occasionally plundered and fed on others.

It’s not commonly considered noble to do so, much less to flaunt it, true, but the fact that it afflicts us all, gives me some degree of consolation when instinctively distrusting the fervent affirmations of the pious.

I always thought I was being unfair, up until it dawned on me that the people worth paying attention to, are exactly the ones who talk to the predator in them, and have no, or little, illusions about their fate in the court of “pleasant manners”.

Not that I’m defending “radical candour”, that repugnant expression apparently meant to elevate “being an asshole” to a posture that’s acceptable and worthy of consideration, no.

Maybe I’m saying that unleashing the beast is fundamental, but only proper when you turn it into art.

 

 

• • •

É sempre assim

 

É tarde, não é?

Já é outra órbita, mais lenta, mais larga, mais esquisita, mais esquisita para ti, que ainda não chegaste ao pátio vazio (solarengo, sim, mas vazio), aquele onde te apercebes que afinal a tua órbita tem tanto de inevitável como de impossível, e que só pode mesmo ser assim.

É sempre assim.

Quem me dera conseguir explicar-te. Quem me dera conseguir não querer explicar-te, tanto. Quem me dera que não fosse assim.

Mas não, é sempre assim.

 

 

• • •

Certo

 

Não é como se me tivesse explicitamente indicado fosse o que fosse que me pudesse levar a supor que existia um qualquer diálogo que precisava de ser iniciado, mas a minha cabeça é solo fértil até para meros fragmentos de sementes dessas, reais ou imaginadas.

Se calhar são as hesitações, sobretudo as mais ínfimas, que me salvam de me rasgar em farrapos. Se calhar não querer saber está certo.

Se calhar é só isso que está certo.

 

 

• • •

Ransom

 

In order to effectively solicit real sympathy, you will have to debase yourself by publicly opening the gates to your very soul, no matter how trivial or dark it may be.

To be clear, this is not an even exchange; what you are donating isn’t a kind of fuel that automatically triggers amity, it is a covert ransom which you will never be able to redeem.

 

 

• • •

Procedure

Illustration by Moebius — L’incal Lumière

 

I completely forgot that you may have wanted to know when it’ll be over, so here: never, that’s when.

Calm down now; you know perfectly well that the solace of being convinced that you’re the one who’s in the right can never be so absolute as to guarantee that you have considered every single detail that may prove it otherwise.

And yes, you’re correct, it hasn’t mattered in a long time; just consider it the habitual reminder for the need for clarity in procedure.

 

 

• • •

De Olhos Fechados

 

Eu sei exactamente o que sempre quis, mas nunca soube que sabia.

É um truque, uma prestidigitação (ela diz que não, que “é um dique ou um fosso, só pode”), um obstáculo menor que quer ser vencido em nome de pequenos e pedestres louvores, um rito de passagem.

É muito difícil explicar-lhe que não quero saber, que não é para aí que estou a olhar.

 

 

• • •

The Infinite Loop

Rui Sanches — Sem Título (2012)

 

I get stuck sometimes.

I don’t mean stuck as in “frozen” but literally stuck in an infinite loop, processing the same set of mental steps, over and over, unable to detect an exit.

Yes, it sounds slightly mental but there’s a familiar tranquillity to it, much in the same way as the prospect of going to prison may be daunting at first, but there is still no denying that the idea of a prolonged isolation from initiative, or even reaction, could be a blessing of sorts; all of a sudden, only a very specific universe of possible steps exists, there are no external variables. What has to be done, but especially what can be done becomes very clear.

The curse of it all is that no matter whether I embrace or question the thought, it just becomes another infinite loop in the next order of magnitude.

Maybe it’s not that important.

 

 

• • •

Be There At Ten

 

You will now listen to my voice. My voice will help you and guide you still deeper into Europa. Every time you hear my voice, with every word and every number, you will enter into a still deeper layer, open, relaxed and receptive.

I shall now count from one to ten. On the count of ten, you will be in Europa.

I say One. And as your focus and attention are entirely on my voice, you will slowly begin to relax.

Two, your hands and your fingers are getting warmer and heavier.

Three, the warmth is spreading through your arms, to your shoulders and your neck.

Four, your feet and your legs get heavier.

Five, the warmth is spreading to the whole of your body.

On six, I want you to go deeper.

I say: Six. And the whole of your relaxed body is slowly beginning to sink.

Seven, you go deeper and deeper and deeper.

Eight, on every breath you take, you go deeper.

Nine, you are floating.

On the mental count of ten, you will be in Europa. Be there at ten.

I say: Ten.

Europa (1991) — Lars von Trier, narrated by Max von Sydow

 

 

 

• • •

Un Bravo Ragazzo

Marcello Mastroianni in “La Dolce Vita” (Federico Fellini, 1960)

 

Sono scappato dal mio vecchio lavoro, ho lasciato i vecchi giri, sono diventato un bravo ragazzo. Ma tutto, a parte mia moglie, a parte quello che ci diciamo io e lei quando siamo a letto assieme, a parte le giornate buone che ci prendiamo camminando per strada e pensando che non abbiamo bisogno di nient’altro, tutto mi è scivolato addosso senza lasciare tracce. Fino a oggi. Mi è bastato essere sfiorato dall’odore del sangue per ritrovarmi dentro, come un tossico del cazzo. E come un tossico mi sono dimenticato di quanto sia pericoloso spingersi oltre la linea, trasformare il lavoro in qualcosa di personale, che ti fa rischiare e stare male. Che ti fa perdere.

La bellezza è un malinteso — Sandrone Dazieri

 

 

• • •

The Termination Paradox


 

I struggle with the details.

Not because there’s so many of them, or because they’re small and, according to some, bothersome to deal with it, no.

What is exhausting is the brutal reckoning that nothing can ever be cleanly and completely terminated, that’s what it is.

The infinity of it all, see?

 

 

• • •

Mise En Abyme

 

Pre-emptive kitsch offers fake emotions, and at the same time a pretended rejection of the thing it offers. The artist pretends to take himself seriously, the critics pretend to judge his product and the modernist establishment pretends to promote it. At the end of all this pretence, someone who cannot perceive the difference between advertising (which is a means) and art (which is an end) decides that he should buy it. Only at this point does the chain of pretence come to an end, and the real value of postmodernist art reveal itself — namely, its value in monetary exchange. Even at this point, however, the pretence is important. The purchaser must still believe that what he buys is real art, and therefore intrinsically valuable, a bargain at any price. Otherwise, the price would reflect the obvious fact that anybody — even the purchaser — could have faked such a product. The essence of fakes is that they are substitutes for themselves, avatars of the infinite mise-en-abyme that lies behind every saleable thing.

Roger Scruton — The Great Swindle

 

 

• • •

It’s Not Wrong

 

I need to keep telling myself this until convinced that my poor judgement, my chronic lack of discernment and all those other flaws aren’t any more somber than anyone else’s.

It is very possible that I may have resisted it, because admitting that their glorification was a fucking monumental waste of time, would somehow tarnish an imaginary medal I’d awarded myself.

Yes, yes, I know that my head being a souq is no excuse.

It is what it is.

 

 

• • •

Et Si Tu Naissais Encore Une Fois?

 

Imagine que c’est possible, juste pour un instant.

Tu crois que ça te prendrait le même temps pour tout réapprendre? Et tu vas apprendre quoi, au juste?

Tu y arrives, toi, à imaginer l’inimaginable?

 

 

 

• • •

Devias estar contente só porque sim

 

Devias estar à espera que acabasse assim
Já desisti de tudo inclusive de mim
Mas as folhas dos ramos ainda vão cair
E o chão ficar à espera de as receber

Devia estar à espera
Não é diferente do que era
Devias estar contente só porque sim

A areia da praia nunca fica igual
Depois da passagem de um homem normal
Olhando para o caminho o que é que o homem vê
Apenas pegadas à espera da maré

Devia estar à espera
Não é diferente do que era
Devias estar contente só porque sim

Que a vida não faz sentido
Eu não lhe encontro sentido nenhum
Mas está a acontecer agora
Se não é boa ela melhora

Ela Melhora — OIOAI

 

 

 

• • •

Go Away

 

I don’t know how to deal with whatever it is that you seem to want me to realise, as it seems to involve mysteriously complex mental gymnastics. And I’m drawing a blank.

Could you please not make me tell you to go away, and simply fade into the background? Even if just as a reciprocal gesture of courtesy, for instance?

There will be no new memories, you know, these are the ones that will ever be, and begrudging that I’m disrespecting them sounds pointless.

 

 

• • •

Departure

 

Do you regret it now?

Does it help, just a little bit, to know that there was nothing you could have done?

Of course you do.

Of course it doesn’t.

 

 

 

• • •

No One Knows for Certain

 

Everybody’s wonderin’ what and where they they all came from
Everybody’s worryin’ ’bout where they’re gonna go
When the whole thing’s done
But no one knows for certain
And so it’s all the same to me
I think I’ll just let the mystery be

Some say once you’re gone you’re gone forever
And some say you’re gonna come back
Some say you rest in the arms of the Saviour
If in sinful ways you lack

Some say that they’re comin’ back in a garden
Bunch of carrots and little sweet peas
I think I’ll just let the mystery be

Everybody’s wonderin’ what and where they they all came from
Everybody’s worryin’ ’bout where they’re gonna go
When the whole thing’s done
But no one knows for certain
And so it’s all the same to me
I think I’ll just let the mystery be

Some say they’re goin’ to a place called Glory
And I ain’t saying it ain’t a fact
But I’ve heard that I’m on the road to purgatory
And I don’t like the sound of that
I believe in love and I live my life accordingly
But I choose to let the mystery be

Everybody is wondering what and where they they all came from
Everybody is worryin’ ’bout where they’re gonna go
When the whole thing’s done
But no one knows for certain
And so it’s all the same to me

I think I’ll just let the mystery be
I think I’ll just let the mystery be

 

Let The Mystery Be — Iris Dement (The Leftovers soundtrack)

 


Full version

• • •

Asepsis

Streptococcus Pneumoniae

 

It is all a game. A controlled universe where one mustn’t, can’t, deviate from the well rehearsed script.

This what we’ve come to:

We don’t get bemoan that we don’t know who we, or others, are any more; that is simply the price we pay for the dubious comfort of hygiene, or whatever the fuck we’re now calling this compulsion to scrub our lives clean of every dissonant bacteria, this perplexing assumption of a compromised immune system in compulsory need of an aseptic ritual.

 

 

• • •
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