Friday, October 14, 2016



D.S. Carne-Ross (1921-2010), Instaurations: Essays in and out of Literature, Pindar to Pound (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1979), pp. 240-241:
Suppose further that, first from choice and then from necessity (our new, frightening friend), we had to stay put in one spot, vagrants no longer since the gas that whisked us over the face of the earth had run out and the highways had buckled and half vanished as grass returned to cover the scars of that self-inflicted wound. Suppose that our lives were spent in homes where the mysteries of birth and death had occurred, instead of being handed over to sterilized non-places called hospitals, and that our work was done near the hallowed ground where our dead lay. Suppose that we had to live according to the rhythms of day and night, the magic juice that disrupted those rhythms having long since been priced off the market by the utilities companies. Might not the symbolisms of the sacred which have withered in the regnum hominis start to take hold again? None of these changes is impossible to conceive, unless we are so mesmerized by the size and noise of the man-locked set all around us that we think it indestructible. Is it impossible or illicit to imagine the change of heart and mind which might in time go with these material changes?


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