The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

September 3, 2012

Death and Sex

The lights were off and I knew secret
deaths were going on and I was the
country. This entry, concerned with de
ath, the loss of virginity,
cathecting for a long time now; it was
n't death, and stemmed largely from
projection. The tape was deathly expli
cit; E. C. ran the camera. We made
an "inverse" of the tape, both deathly
  and in terms of mood. Now death,
her saying I've had my eyes on you for
  a long time, later - now,
intensity, hysteria, exhaustion, death
. I'm worn out, wear people out. I
remembered all too well his death-wish
, mild deceit, and the feeling that
I masturbated while falling dying; she
said she'd place them on her death
and ending in the real world, travel,
fear. I traveled to England, was
deathly extreme - we used CuSeeMe exte
nsively and including five
projections, dealing with war, death,
memory. For me, then I performed
some deathly work which created a bit
of dance that already created
tremors; I want to release this but co
uldn't conceive, of technology,
income, death, labor, art. We had it a
nd so forth, but the emphasis was
the same - on language, death, death-s
ex dances. I read everything I could
about Anita Berber. I was as old as th
e other residents. Working on ideas
of pain, wounding, sex, sex as an abso
lute loss of a world, and it is
these worlds, replete, that frightened
  me; I felt sex lurked in what
seemed to be emotional catastrophe, al
ways already around the corner, and
the only proof of Spirit I can think o
f was based on its preposterousness.
A point, they were simultaneously life
  and sex, my self-disappearance had
frontal lobotomies, people literally s
tarving for sex, or dying. In
temple, by myself, facing sex and the
world and the words "i'm tired" in
Sprechstimme; they were words about se
x. But that line, secretly
conservative? That I thought suicide,
lived in sex always, there seemed a
descent, fear, mumbling after. Somewhe
re the ringing of sex itself or
rather the horizon of sex which lies i
n sex which we pray is not
immediate, not soon. Then recognizing
the way our own sex is present even
in the most fundamental acts of the sc
attering of material culture,
memories, afterwards, when you are yet
  another. And how worlds shatter,
imminent, with sex! - What has been de
ath-sex dances. I read everything I
could about Anita Berber and sex in vi
rtual worlds.

We just had sex and I still have the i
nternal mapping of the house burned
into me.

among them

just beneath the surface of the strings, the creaking of the wood,
the lengthening crack, the split in the skin, snap of the wire or
gut, peg slipping, the twisted neck, the staves separated, post
dislodged, braces buzzing, the bridge lifted

or the pad dislodged, air hissing, spring shifted or all tension
lost, the bent posts, twisted rods, air oozing from the head

maintaining pressure, positions, fingers adjusted for slipped
strings, sudden decreasing tension, pads pushed slightly back
with the edge of the finger, pads pressed slightly harder with
the thumb, increasing pressure, bringing the body closer to the

swollen sound-boards and gut strings stretching, the looser tension
lowering pitch randomly across sympathetics as well, bow sticking
and squeaking, too little rosin, too much rosin, moisture inside
the tube damaging pads, rusted spring, tarnished metal, broken
pegs, stuck pegs, twisted bridge, misplaced bridge, slipping
bridge, fretted octaves higher than harmonics, slack strings,
strings too taut, cracked and broken windings, bent keys, in-line
g key, playing stopped, retuning, recalibrating, slipped
sympathetics, resetting positions, resetting frets, resetting
bridge, resetting neck

something rattling somewhere

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