Sunday, January 09, 2005
What does one "take" when one takes a picture ? An instant of reflected light ? A few photons ? Hardly grand larceny. The image of the bird falls through my lenses, onto my film and retina. The image of me enters its round eye. It's a dialogue, a little nexus of mutual influence. The bird flies off, sooner than it otherwise might have flown, into, let us say, the maw of a passing wolf who would otherwise have passed right on, lunchless. What, then, have I taken ?
Next, now, comes the real corruption. The trafficking. Trafficking in images. Trafficking in all sorts of commodities. Tits and tats. Eyes and teeth. It's a veritable black market, its stalls heaped with contaband. What exchanges hands ? You might well ask.
It's all quite shameless. The moon, the poet said, does not bear a grudge. Neither, of course, does it love me. Or you. Nor would it if it could. Nor should it.
The squirrel has the right idea.
It is offering a profound teaching. Gratis.
Who has ears big enough to hear it with, my dear ?