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Context July 16, 2011

Posted by The Typist in cryptical envelopment, literature, New Orleans, Toulouse Street.

Any theory of literature which does not account for the interaction with the reader as part of the final product, the possibility that the end result is different depending on the reader, is false. Any work of literature that does not allow for or in fact anticipate the possibility of vectors with the reader’s experience which transform the story or poem into a unique work commingling text and reader fails.

Perhaps that means much of what I have written until now fails, but at the moment this seems entirely true.

It need not be universally true for all readers, but if it is not possible for any reader then Houston, we have a problem.

Perhaps I am wrong.

Maybe it’s just the frightening volume of stories, poems and films I keep encountering that seem to intersect my life.

I wrote this maybe a year ago:

I have lost all faith
in coincidence
& marvel in terror
at the dark clockwork
of the stars.

Perhaps I was meant to read certain things, or view certain films. Maybe I should still take that two bedroom apartment outside of which I found that beautiful piece of polished green glass. Or maybe it’s just an Odd piece of glass. You can never know, which seems the point of so many things that entered my life this past year and grabbed me by the throat and tried to drag me into the page or screen, things like the Priest’s Monologue in Synechdoche, New York. (Fuck everybody, Amen.)

Maybe that’s not a poem back one paragraph, but a sentence. No, it’s a poem, the enjambment of “faith” and “coincidence”, the isolation of “marvel in terror”. Context is so critical.

KON-tekst Origin: 1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin contextus a joining together, scheme, structure, equivalent to contex ( ere ) to join by weaving ( con- con- + texere to plait, weave) + -tus suffix of v. action; compare tex … Suffix of action, to plait, weave, not just the coincidental adjacency but the action of bringing together, of reader and text in this discussion.

While we’re talking about coffee (would you like some? I’ve been drinking too much again lately and there’s still a third of a pot), there is another All Over Coffee that just jumps off the page at me, or is it that I fall into the page completely?



1. Paul Benton - July 16, 2011

a con is also someone on the con – out to get something from you that you no doubt do not want to relinquish. the text are the words he abuses to arrive at is given destination. so it goes.


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