Saturday, June 4, 2016

Extraordinary Discourse 280


The word is simultaneously profane, that which we use to communicate everyday; and the Word is sacred, that which exists and justifies the ground of being. This is worth remembering, for it is just as true today as it was in Jacob’s era. There is magic in poetry, not just as a metaphor but in a literal sense as well. Narrative, fiction, language, prosody, all of these, despite the calipers of criticism, maintains a sort of charged and enchanted power. There is something sacred in poetry which is greater than and before that of even religion, and this power of language – to conjure completely different worlds that exist only in the grammatical relationships of abstract words to one another, to maintain the ability to affect the objective world of material existence, and to function as totems of meaning which can travel from mind to mind – was as true for Jacob wrestling with his angel as it is for any of us wrestling with meaning today.
Recall, Orpheus: Upon the End of National Poetry Month
May 6, 2016