Monday, February 25, 2008

As per usual, my reaction is 'Huh?'

Initially, I found myself nodding my head. Certainly, there must be something lost if one is attempting to write about man in an entirely logical fashion. The logical is only part of our experiences, a lot of what makes us what we are doesn't seem very logical at all. All of us, even in our adult lives I believe to some extent, stew in our imagination, if not in outright fantasies and dreams.

I enjoyed Brenton's poking fun of the “informative style,” the perhaps all too complete (-ly useless?) description of the room. Logically describing a room a character enters makes sense, but I've certainly never surveyed a room in such a manner upon entering it unless I was either for some reason making an attempt to memorize its contents, or was incredibly, incredibly bored and probably more awake and less easily distracted than I generally am. Remembering some creative non-fiction writing I read from other students, this interesting tendency to describe a setting entirely, or a new character completely upon meeting them was one that often rubbed me the wrong way, though I had difficulty verbalizing why. Something about it rings untrue.

A man cut in two by a window. It's an interesting piece of language, and I didn't blame him for perusing it, and it's strange materialization in his mind.

But this is where you lose me, whether it be because of my inability to understand or perhaps because I do and simply disagree? Some truth in the random firings of our minds, like the window phrase above? Hmmmm. Certainly there could be some truths about ourselves that might be uncovered by looking at the illusions we create or words that spew uncontrolled from our heads (if that's even possible, but I'm raising my skeptical eyebrow here). But it seems so abstract it becomes useless. He says our brains are dulled by trying to make the unknown known. Would that be, by his opinion, what I'm doing here, then? But if something is utterly, utterly senseless to you, why bother?

The waking mind is scarred to express itself, the dreaming mind satisfied and free. And I assume not scarred to express itself, so it reveals more truths? ...But the dreaming mind doesn't make sense to our waking minds. We're so incapable of grabbing hold of a dream. So how could it possibly inform our lives and our writing to such a great extent as he seems to imply it should? I feel like I'm being told to drink a cup of fog. There's water in there, so you can do it, right? But what use do I have for water that isn't in a form my throat muscles can work with?

And am I right that on page 21 he says he traced the outline of images from his head onto a paper? Like, literally, man?

I feel like I'm talking about nothing at all.

On a random note, just in general I do sometimes like a good unexpected juxtaposition, but...I had trouble connecting why these were important to him, how they connected with surrealism overall?

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