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Circuits: Michael Brodsky.

“Whatever way I ultimately took the snow falling I was assured of being glued to a stance, a localizable, diagnosable, capturable stance. No. No. No. No. The snow was falling. Kabbala Street snow was falling. But what was the furious plummet of the snowflakes doomed to dissolve on my piss-impregnated topcoat but the enactment of resistance to such an extinction. Seeing the snowfall in this manner I was all at once manumitted from the Kabbala Street furnace. I was more than ever wary of distraction but seeing the snow falling in this manner was not a surrender to distraction, a flight from actively pullulating despair. Such seeing was a full bodied exertion of despair. Seeing the snow falling as a deployed and enacted resistance to falling—seeing the snow falling as the snow’s only way of expressingβ€”living—resistance to falling, I was permitted to elude entrapment in drooling passivity before a distraction, a contraption recruited from Kabbala Street. The snow falling was no longer a state of affairs somewhere out there enjoining no collaborative pang, no strain of output. To see the snow falling as an enacted resistance to—the only conceivable protest against—descent into extinction was to be transformed from passive consumer of sleekly synthesized distractions into an active collaborator in, an unstinting undergoer of, what I myself was suddenly playing no small part in synthesizing. The snow falling was now very much fused with the particular slant of my consciousness on how it fell, how it was falling. I was suddenly as much out there as the snow falling and the snow falling was reciprocally as much within as my particular slant on its plight. Collaborating as I did in the falling of the snow, somehow forcing the phenomenon itself to undergo the collective spasm it induced within, I knew I had succeeded in resisting one of the prop-like traps set for me (in their eagerness to propagate the plausibility, the desirability of a fixed term to my ploy-breeding despair) by the Kabbala street gang. I knew I had succeeded in inactivating and scuttling one of the trap-like props happily still susceptible to detection by a tottering and therefore ever vigilant myopia.”

“The point of inventory was to be never-ending. Affirming the continued existence of an intact inexhaustible never-ending inventory at the same time affirmed my continued existence as a being forever on the increase, and, as an expanding sum of thoughts acquired, fast approaching…the dimensionlessness, the unlocalizability, the undiagnosability, of all of being.”

 “I thought of the body, the incised body. I shuddered. Surely I had come to the end of all incision, of all acquisition of incision—incision as the high road to, pretext for, acquisition of myself as more than myself, as nothing less than prefiguration of being’s all.”

from Circuits, a novel by Michael Brodsky {1985}.

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Authors literature Novelists photography Playwrights Samuel Beckett Text Writings

Samuel Beckett.

So the sad tale a last time told they sat on as though turned to stone. Through the single window dawn shed no light. From the street no sound of reawakening. Or was it that buried in who knows what thoughts they paid no heed? To light of day. To sound of reawakening. What thoughts who knows.

Thoughts, no, not thoughts. Profounds of mind. Of mindlessness. Whither no light can reach. No sound. So sat on as though turned no stone. The sad tale a last time told.

Pause.

 Nothing is left to tell.

—from Ohio Impromptu.

Where was I? The change. In what did it consist. It is hard to say. Something slipped. There I was, warm and bright smoking my tobacco-pipe, watching the warm bright wall, when suddenly somewhere some little thing slipped, some little tiny thing. Millions of little things moving all together out of their old place, into a new one nearby, and furtively, as though it was forbidden. It was the same sun, and the same wall, but so changed that I felt I had been transported, without my having remarked it, to some quite different yard, and to some quite different season, in an unfamiliar country.

But in what did the change consist? What was changed, and how? What was changed, if my information is correct, was the sentiment that a change, other than a change of degree, had taken place. What was changed was existence off the ladder.

This I am happy to inform you is the reversed metamorphosis. The Laurel into Daphne. The old thing where it always was, back again.

—from Watt.

But he had hardly felt the absurdity of those things, on the one hand, and the necessity of those others, on the other (for it is rare that the feeling of absurdity is not followed by the feeling of necessity), when he felt the the absurdity of those things of which he had just felt the necessity (for it is rare that the feeling of necessity is not followed by the feeling of absurdity).

—from Watt.

But Watt heard nothing of this, because of other voices singing, crying, stating, murmuring, things unintelligible, in his ear. With these if he was not familiar, he was not unfamiliar either. So he was not alarmed, unduly. Now these voices, sometimes they sang only, and sometimes they cried only, and sometimes they stated only, and sometimes they murmured only, and sometimes they sang and cried, and sometimes they sang and stated, and sometimes they sang and murmured and sometimes they cried and stated and sometimes they cried and murmured, and sometimes they stated and murmured, and sometimes they sang and cried and stated, and sometimes they sang and cried and murmured, and sometimes they cried and stated and murmured, and sometimes they sang and cried and stated and murmured, all together, at the same time, as now, to mention only these four kinds of voices, for there were others. And sometimes Watt understood all, and sometimes he understood much, and sometimes he understood little, and sometimes he understood nothing, as now.

—from Watt.