Friday, August 27, 2010

"Hercules was slain by a magic shirt he had donned in all innocence, its poisoned fabric immediately fusing with his own skin, burning on his body like boiling oil. He could not cast it off again except at the price of his very life.
Groaning, roaring, and finally mad with the pain, this invincible man tore his own skin and flesh from his bones along with the shirt, laid bare his bleeding sinews, his shoulder blades, the red cage of his ribs, and inside it, lungs burning out, his heart. He fell. And the light from that day gathered in seven ponds, into which the wretched man's blood and sweat dissolved, seven mirrors that bore the image of the sky,- clouds, shadows, emptiness. Then it was night. But the light of the seven ponds remained and rose up, stars among the stars of the firmament."
from " The Last World" by Christoph Ransmayr

from the sketchbook,
reflections in lavalette canal

Friday, August 20, 2010

"Each forest outline, each pond, the course of each river had glided itself through the hands of Arachne the weaver, the deaf mute, for whom, so Echo said, her loom was a window trellised with threads, looking into a garishly bright and soundless world...

Echo alone would have been capable of understanding her explanation and of translating for the Roman how her tapestry was of value to the deaf-mute woman only as long as it was still growing, stretched on the frame of her loom's beams and shafts. Once completed, whatever landed in this moldy room would be pulled out again only when a smelter or a farmer wanted to decorate his sooty walls with a beautiful landscape gave her a sheep in trade, whereupon Arachne would simply cut the ropes binding its legs and let it run wild on the stony terraces of the cliffs."
from "the Last World" by Christoph Ransmayr