Thursday, June 09, 2005

das Dasein ist Rund

Being is round says Gaston Bachelard,in The Poetics Of Space and everything round invites a caress.

The hand seems built to conform to roundness. We don't usually splint a finger popsicle-stick straight -- we immobilize it in the position of function -- the gentle arc it takes when at rest.

Consider the pleasure of holding a canteloupe or an apple. Consider how an infant's fuzzy skull with its dangerous fontanelle seems to invite the hand. Consider the rounded erotic surfaces of the body. Breast. Belly. Buttock. Balls. How well they all fit the hand ! All, oddly enough, begin with the bilobed letter "B".

Our sky gods -- the moon, the sun, the stars -- are round, and our feet walk the round earth.

We emerge from the embrace of a round place. Womb: even the word seems round. And the first objects our round eyes scan are round -- a breast, a parent's face.

The meadow flowers with roundness -- both empty

and full.

Bachelard, quoting Jules Michelet, notes a bird is almost completely spherical.

God, it is said, is a sphere whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere.

My son, when he was quite young, synthesized those two propositions and said:

Everybody thinks God is a bird.

1 comment:

mike roman said...

Fabulous critique! And what insight from your son ;)