The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

September 18, 2017


Pelagic \Pe*lag"ic\, a. [L. pelagicus.]
Of or pertaining to the ocean; -- applied especially to animals
that live at the surface of the ocean, away from the coast.

sound philosophy:

a quirk, i do philosophy - somatic, structural, mathematico-
logical, in the form of sound. does this protect me against
contradiction? can sound contradict sound? certainly the
semantic structure of written language is inconceivably more
complex; then sound perhaps illustrates what can't be said,
varieties of the ineffable.

because of age, i plan ahead, carefully, no farther than the
shore. because of isolation, the shore is private as well; what
i do may be my business, but none will know for sure. in a few
years perhaps my fingers might lose the extraordinary degree of
suppleness they appear to have, my hearing might be accompanied
by waves of tinnitus, virtual cricketeering. i'll play the
insect world, i'll walk to the tuning bench where a sarangi
lies, everything foreign to me.

isolation is bizarre; it increases paranoia and suspicion, makes
one unpalatable in the long run. the last time we were invited
to dinner? i can't remember. the last time i performed at a
local club? maybe eight months ago; the last time i was invited
to talk local, over two years ago. an outpouring of begging
letters on my part makes me a nuisance, nothing more. online at
least i remain both invisible and visible, viable one way or

i disappear into the sound of an instrument; it's not that a
world opens up, but everything else disappears - phrases and
intervals take over, become obelisks in a different form of
landscape. i record what i play; i discover what i play upon
re-play, listening, ludic correspondence to ingratuitous and
silent forms.

and i live in the midst of dynamics that displace my figure,
body and mind, i am hordes among hordes, i horde; our bodies are
standing-waves of the molecular and quantum, appearances of
structures on the way toward subsummation. the sound, music,
dies out faster; for a moment i have the pleasure of an
instrument, and the instrument exists momentarily, as an
instrument with all the potential that accompanies it.

i see myself as networked, networking, interconnected; my mind
collapses against the sight, which it procures. my mind lives in
cessation; i teeter. it's a slow fall, but a fall nonetheless.

no things, but in dynamics; no bandwidth is wide enough to admit
the world, narrow enough to observe chimera. the world as far as
one is concerned, as far as there is concern, is in error - as
far as error is concerned, as long as there is world. any state
of affairs embodies, not only its own negation, but also its own

network protocols are undermined from beneath, are transformed,
are error-prone, disappear with the disappearance of channels
and communities, interrupted by a telephone call from out-
of-state, which i take to discuss other networked media; the
gist is clear, from the collapse and focusing of consciousness
via-a- vis the screen, to the appearance of structure in the
sense of a unique object which splits, 0*x = 0; 1*x = x; 0+x =
x; 1+x takes us away from all of this, the diacritical mark or
signifier tending elsewhere, the shaky construction of
uncountable and unaccounted-for culture and whatever else we
might notice in the world. what we notice is the world noticing
and neither or nor the world (and we are the world etc. etc.)
notice anything but circumscription, circumlocution; wherever
1+x goes is nameless, and if not now, then when; if not here,
then where; and who among the who of us?

questions of epistemology and ontology are always flatlined
unless circumscribed, and then what breaks out and where, and
again among whom?

not nihilism but dynamics all the way up and down, mobile
structures for category theorists. and then some.

late at night in think of failures, what might have been,
email i should have written, email i should not have written,
words and actions i would rescind, opportunities which never
materialized, the inconceivability of remaining alive as
whatever will be left of me begins to deteriorate. the slurry of
the world is churned; call that the chora. we descend; our
consciousness, abject and impoverished, holds on until the last
moment. our president taunts others, tempting everyone to
nuclear annihilation; we're already past that, however - we've
been there, done that, and what remains on the other side of the
wall, where the blankness of fascism has erected another tawdry
structure, is nothing but flows and damage.


< a quirk, i do philosophy - somatic, structural, mathematico-
> a quirk, i do philosophy - somatic, structural, methamatico-
< network protocols are undermined from beneath, are transformed,
> netework protocols are undermined from beneath, are transformed,
< gist is clear, from the collapse and focusing of consciousness
> jist is clear, from the collapse and focusing of consciousness


A quirk: Philosophy does me.


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