The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

November 4, 2012

solo explorations and experiments (best) sarangi and voice sarangi viola cura cumbus pipa

pipa lilting tune and tricky runs oh i love this
cura cumbus bowing and bow lifts oh i love this
viola third octaves on the strings oh i love this
sarangi third octave on the high string oh i love this
sarangi and voice just that oh i love this

Death Cull

The new reality is watching, walking death, repeatedly, until
things finally come to an end. Everyone goes through the same;
we are always the new old. Every week there are new
disappearances; because I have so many acquaintances, I see
these disasters constantly. Why disasters? Because, unlike
everything else in life, there is an obdurate finality about
death; communication, palliatives, reminiscences, are no longer
possible. Death points to the impossibility of life. Death
points by virtue of non-pointing; there are no vectors in and
among death. Death is neither singular nor plural. My friends
and acquaintances disappear; my daughter and I are estranged:
mutual disappearance. It began when I was a child; whole
generations died off. By the time I could think through them,
they were gone; by the time I could think, death gnawed me. Life
is a process of sinking through life and lives. The new reality
is always present; what's new is the constant birthing of death.
Death is assigned names: X died, whole sets {x} pass on,
veterans, generations, species. Death begins with _death-of_; it
is the last use of the name, which undergoes absorption. Another
way to think: the proper name contains the seed of death.
Another way to think of it: death is a time or demarcation for
the living. But this is not death, this is the signifier. The
signifier of death is not, can never be, death. Death for the
living is a gathering of similarities. The proper name changes
when death enters; it no longer serves as the reception or
transmission of messages in the name of the body. Or rather
there is an ontological shift in the body, which enters the
virtual in its entirety; someone may speak in the guise or
simulacrum of the body. Death transforms the speaking body into
an other speaking-for. What was unspeakable, the body, is the
responsibility of others; the speaking body, even before death,
lives within a recessive mode, every utterance a portal unto
death, every utterance a gift on the verge of being returned.
How does one approach this, one's death, the death of others?
One only waits; being is waiting, and being alive is living
awaiting. As one ages, one awaits time itself, the real is
transformed into the passive substance of dying, rebirth and
rebearing elsewhere beyond a horizon, immovable, unnamed. We
remember the partings of others far more than their arrivals; we
remember the arrivals of deaths, more than the parting of
others. We passively take our place in this panoply; there is
never anything more to do, never anything more that has been

twas after the hurricane sandy (best)

chris diasparra, baritone
azure carter, voice
alan sondheim, cura cumbus, viola, flute, pipa, sarangi
  in that order (particularly liked playing the flute)
very weird music, don't know what t make of it, as if
  we're huddling from the 'erricane - just odd which is
  maybe great

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