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for the week of June 27, 2011

This hour that can arrive sometimes outside of all hours, a hole in the net of time,

this way of being between, not above or behind but between,

this orifice hour to which we gain access in the lee of other hours, of the immeasurable life with its hours ahead and on the side, its time for each thing, its things at the precise time,

to be in a hotel room or on a platform, to be looking at a shop window, a dog, perhaps

holding you in my arms, siesta love or half asleep, glimpsing in that patch of light through the door that opens onto the terrace, in a green gust the blouse you took off to give me the faint taste of salt trembling on your breasts,


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and without notice, without any unnecessary warnings of transition, in a Latin Quarter café or in the last scene of a film by Pabst, an approach to what no longer follows the order god meant it to, access between two activities installed in the niche of their hours, in the beehive day, like this or in another way (in the shower, in the middle of the street, in a sonata, in a telegram) touching on something that doesn’t rest on the senses, a breach in succession, and so like this, so slipping, the eels, for example, the region of sargasso weed, the eels and also the marble instruments, Jai Singh’s night drinking a flow of stars, the observatories 
beneath the moon of Jaipur and Delhi, the black ribbon of migrations, the eels in the middle of the street or in the stalls in a theater, giving themselves for the one following them from the marble instruments, the one no longer looking at his watch in the Paris night; so simply Möbius strip and eels and marble instruments, this that already flows in a silly, solitary word, looking for itself, that also sets in motion from the sargassum of time and random semantics, a verb’s migration: discourse, this course, the Atlantic eels and the eel words, the marble lightning of Jai Singh’s instruments, the one who looks at the stars and the eels, the Möbius strip turning round on itself, in the ocean, in Jaipur, fulfilling itself one more time without other times, being as marble is, as the eel is: you’ll understand that none of this can be said from sidewalks or chairs or city stages; you’ll understand that only like this, eel or marble giving way, growing into a strip, then no longer being among the sargassum, there is a course, this happens: try it, like they do in the Atlantic night, like he who seeks stellar measures, not to know, not for anything; something like the blow of a wing, a drawing back, a moan of love and then now, then maybe, and then yes.


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Of course inevitable metaphor, eel or star, of course hooks for the image, of course fiction, therefore stillness in libraries and armchairs; as you like, there is no other way here to be a sultan of Jaipur, a shoal of eels, a man who turns his face up to the open in the redheaded night. Ah, but not to give in to the lure of that intelligence used to other offers: entering into words, out of a vomit of stars or eels; whatever’s said, the slow curve of the marble instruments or the boiling black nocturnal ribbon assaulting the estuaries, and not just for being said, this that flows or converges or seeks might be what it is and not what it is said to be: Aristotelian dog, let the duality that sharpens your fangs somehow know your superfluity when another sluice begins to open in marble and in fish, when Jai Singh with a crystal between his fingers is that fisherman extracting from his net, with a shudder of teeth and fury, an eel that is a star that is an eel that is a star that is an eel.

And so the black galaxy runs in the night like the other golden one up above in the night running motionlessly: why look for more names, more cycles when there are stars, there are eels born in the Atlantic depths that begin, because in some way we have to begin to follow them, to grow, translucent larvae floating between two waters, crystalline amphitheater of jellyfish and plankton, mouths that slide in an interminable suction, bodies linked in the now multi-form serpent that some night, no one can know when, will rise up leviathan, emerge as an inoffensive and terrifying kraken, to initiate the migration along the ocean floor while the other galaxy reveals her bijoux for the sailor on watch who through the neck of a bottle of rum or beer glimpses its indifferent monotony and curses at every swallow a destiny of nautical days, starvation wages, a woman who’ll be making love with some other man in life’s ports.


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Here’s how it is: Johannes Schmidt, a Dane, knew that on the terraces of a moving Elsinor, between 22 and 30 degrees north and between 48 and 65 degrees west, the recurring succubus of the Sargasso Sea was more than the phantom of a poisoned king and that there, inseminated at the end of a cycle of slow mutations, the eels who live for so many years at the edge of blades of water return to submerge themselves in the gloom of the depths four hundred meters down, lay their eggs hidden by half a kilometer of slow silent thickness, and dissolve in death by the millions of millions, molecules of plankton that the first larvae already sip in the palpitation of incorruptible life. No one can see this last dance of death and rebirth of the black galaxy, instruments guided from afar will have given Schmidt a precarious access to this womb of the ocean, but Python has already been born, the minute and slippery larvae, Anguilla anguilla, slowly perforate the green wall, a colossal kaleidoscope combines them among crystals and jellyfish and sudden shadows of dogfish or whales. And they too will enter into a dead language, they’ll be called leptocephali, it’s already spring on the ocean’s back and the seasonal pulse has awakened the microscopic myriads in the deepest depths to set out on their ascent toward warmer, bluer waters, the arrival at the fabulous level whence the serpent will launch itself toward us, it is going to come with its billions of eyes teeth flanks tails mouths, inconceivable for being so many, absurd for how, for why, poor Schmidt.

A sample from Julio Cortázar's
From the Observatory

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