Blooming Terminus

Posted in Essay, Literary by Arasmus on November 25, 2008

For the last nine months I have not written an extended blog entry. Instead, I have posted shorter entries in what I call my “microblog.” In fact, things have gone even further so that now, my Twitters, Flickr postings and Lastfm annotations are automatically gathered into an even shorter form of micro-blogging known as a lifestream. With the gestation period now rapidly coming to an end I feel that I can give birth to a conclusion, and moreover to a comment by way of meta. Narrative is dead. Isative remains.

Life begins with the separation from mother. In that horrendous moment, the other is born. I become we and we become you and me. In becoming the other I become many others. I am the baby, the son, the infant, the grandson, the toddler, the youth, the writer, the teen, the adventurer, the quiet, the brave, the foreigner, the lover, the man etc. Beneath all these labels their remains some common-part of what existed before. It senses the fiction of all signifiers, a semiotic cynic, sloping through doss-houses, for the sake of love and dissolution.

The desire for love drives the search for truth. From tyrants to artists each human longs for acceptance of their true self. In essence; if I could dispense with label and narrative and find my true self, I would know love, and other would disappear within mother. All human activity is equivalent to the scream of the newly born infant. The new does not consent to its separation. Thereafter, everything is valued for its transcendence.

Separated and lost, the self reaches for the paternal narrative. In the beginning there was Chaos and from the void emerged the Word. Art depicts the evolution of the Word and the evolution of art describes the collapse of perspective. Previously, a collection of exhausted hunters, seeking to enlighten and sooth, exchanged at best an oral tradition around an itinerant camp-fire. With the success of agriculture came a societal surplus. Narratives and narrators emerged and the latter increased over time. The single druid became the intelligentsia. From the cauldron of the Renaissance, the Reformation and the Enlightenment emerged the idea of the educated everyman. Through blogs we are all now narrators and Narrative is dead. In literature we can see this evolution from the age of the epic, in which the unlikely is subsumed into the form, through the age of the omniscient narrator to that of the subjective unreliable narrator. James Joyce was close to the end. In Ulysses he took Homer’s epic and substituted the inglorious quotidian. Finally, in Finnegan’s Wake, the hyper-subjective becomes functionally opaque. Since then the blog-train has brought us all to the same terminus. Disembarking. We stand around. It may or may not be Trieste. Bloom eyes the descending petticoats. The station air is filled with the thick soot of subjective rantings, commentaries, analysis, perspectives, debates, overviews, summaries, speculations etc.

Each passenger searches his knickers for awareness. I am breathing. I am thinking. I am seeing. I am sweating. I am afraid. I don’t know where I am. Micro-blogging, a narration of “isness” is born. Plot, arc, structure are no more. We recognize the ignorance of a character in a narrative with no indication of his fate beyond the next paragraph. We pitied them once. Now we live among them. There are no trains departing or arriving at this station anymore. All I can hear is the others, they are, they are, we is. The death of Narrative has dropped us all into a story beyond our control. There are no moo-cows here.


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