Within debris

When the fabric of memory is fragile, what is it then that holds it all together? We have never been there, tells us our memory. We have been there, tells us the photograph. We were never that happy again after this day. What about these two people, slowly vanishing from the picture, faster vanishing from your life, where they stepped in only for a minor stint. The importance of a picture lies not what we see in the picture but in the way we connect what we see to what we assume to be outside of the picture. The vanishing point of a story. Lives dropping behind the paper of a photo, disappearing between the pixels on the screen. They are not together anymore, they just stopped calling after a while. It was a fling in a summer that did not seem to end. Later, with other people, they might look back on this day and regret that they drifted apart. They married and today have two kids. He’s cheating on her. He hates his life. The way their lives unrolls out of this image into endless directions: This Faustian-Pause-Key, the “Verweile doch…” an image represents, that lure of the lives that may go into different directions, lives passing through the plane of the image. Time collapsing and enclosing within its debris all possibilities.

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Fürchterlichste Droge

Es bringt uns nämlich nicht weiter, die rätselhafte Seite am Rätselhaften pathetisch oder fanatisch zu unterstreichen; vielmehr durchdringen wir das Geheimnis nur in dem Grad, als wir es im Alltäglichen wiederfinden, kraft einer dialektischen Optik, die das Alltäglich als undurchdringlich, das Undurchdringlich als alltäglich erkennt. Die passionierteste Untersuchung telepathischer Phänomene wird einen zum Beispiel über das Lesen (das ein eminent telepathischer Vorgang ist) nicht halb soviel lehren, wie die profane Erleuchtung des Lesens über die telepathischen Phänomene. Oder: die passionierteste Untersuchung des Haschischrausches wird einen über das Denken (das ein emientes Narkotikum ist) nicht halb soviel lehren, wie die profane Erleuchtung des Denkens über den Haschischrausch. Der Leser, der Denkende, der Wartende, der Flaneur sind ebensowohl Typen des Erleuchteten wie der Opiumesser, der Träumer, der Berauschte. Und sind profanere. Ganz zu schweigen von jener fürchterlichsten Droge – uns selber -, die wir in der Einsamkeit zu uns nehmen.

— Walter Benjamin

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Inside Me

I never saw this strange dwelling again. Indeed, as I see it now, the way it appeared to my child’s eye, it is not a building, but is quite dissolved and distributed inside me: here one room, there another, and here a bit of corridor which, however, does not con­nect the two rooms, but is conserved in me in fragmentary form. Thus the whole thing is scattered about inside me, the rooms, the stairs that descended with such ceremonious slowness, others, narrow cages that mounted in a spiral movement, in the darkness of which we advanced like the blood in our veins.

— Rainer Maria Rilke

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