Index of Sounds

Matt Wedlock

Is it so a noise to be is it a least remain to rest, is it a so old say to be,
is it a leading are been. Is it so, is it so, is it so, is it so is it so is it so.

Eel us eel us with no no pea no pea cool, no pea cool cooler, no pea
cooler with a land a land cost in, with a land cost in stretches.

—Stein, Tender Buttons

Index of Sounds:
Language as Movement

char WedlockGraphe; Creature/Creation Within Sound of Palimpsest

“a future which will come before as well as a past which will exist in the future”
-Mark Currie: About Time: Narrative, Fiction
and the Philosophy of Time (The Frontiers of Theory)

The image above is the Nordic Rune for the transliteration “a” (/a(ː)/). The Rune itself means “one of the Æsir, or ásynjur”[1], or ‘one of the gods’. The original etymology was written over, a palimpsest, and shifted to mean: “pole, beam, or stave”. Stave, when used intransitively, means “to burst in pieces by striking against something”, “a shape of blood beating/and cells dividing” (Spahr 3). The first letter in basic Latin, A, functions as ground, foundation, and ley line in the English language. In computer science, A*, “A star (listen), is a computer algorithm that is widely used in path finding and graph traversal — the process of plotting an efficiently traversable path between points, called nodes” (Delling 117). Language shifts, sounds create and dissipate, a scratch in wood or stone creates a sound in tongue and a resonance occurs empathetically. A is the article of the mouth.

How does a god or goddess become a stave? Energy transfers; for the most part energy does not panic. Two move in concert: into, away from points of fruition. Each language has its stave. Where language shifts in and upon is where time is constructed. Memory asserts what has been forgotten in space. How does a rune signify that which cannot be ascertained?

in each syllable shouted quiet gave birth to an undercurrent of slight.

Graphe, from the Ancient Greek, graphō,“I draw”, is the act of ingressive breath being expelled throughout the circulatory system into the hand, which compels the “stave” to act as the graphein: to scratch, write. Language expels, pushes within/without the line through the action of scratching out and onto the sedimentary layering of words throughout all non-linear time. Derrida writes “the present is no longer a ‘mother-form’ around which are gathered and differentiated the future (present) and the past (present)” Sound and the written word…are inseparable from one another in their infinite capacity for meaning; “the future (desire) and the present (fulfillment)” act as constant inhabitants of one another (Of Grammatology 210-211). Graphe works in and without correlation within sound and acts as the creation of non-linear tenses of vocabulary. The mouth then acts as aperture “between the past (remembrance) and the present (perpetration), between the capacity and the act, etc., is only a series of temporal differences without any central present, without a present of which the past and future would be but modifications.” How then in poetics. “Can we then go on speaking about time, tenses, and temporal  differences?” (Derrida, Positions 210)

A piece of crystal. A change, in a change that is remarkable there is
no reason to say that there was a time. (Stein, Tender Buttons)

Speaking is the process of making one smaller by expelling the air collected in the lungs through the mechanisms of the respiratory, laryngeal, supra-laryngeal systems. Poetics, in one sense, is the actualization of language through sounds in correlation with the physiological movement of breath, starting at a point outside of the body; air carried inwards by the body and through the movement of speech organs and a pattern of acoustic vibrations created in union or disunion with thought, memory, and dream. Through this, the word declares itself outside and inside of meaning through a palimpsestuous graphe, a looping landscape. Sound and meaning are interconnected through a basic semantic understanding of vocabulary. Thus, sounds and meaning, in Poetics are transferred for shift of structure that defies a basic semantics through the layering of language. Where two, three, eight meet and layer upon one another is how change begins.

used to be a wish now am a coin in pocket
used to be a coin now am zinc covered with mountains back
             used to be a mountain now am the seafloor

                                                             a seafloor now am re-welded islands

Poetry is the language of the palimpsest; I rub again. In the same way, a tongue is used to rub against the teeth to start speech again. The memory of a word is an echo of time; Graphe, the drawing of air to commingle with that echo and create anew. Sarah Dillon states in The Palimpsest: Literature, Criticism, Theory, that “Palimpsests are precisely such objects. They embody and provoke disciplinary encounter…for the productive…entanglement, interruption and inhabitation of disciplines in and on each other.’ (2) Graphe is then the expansion of the breath, not its weak deterrent. What occurs in, for example, works by Charles Olson, Susan Howe’s Singularities, Stein, and Dorn, is the de-habituation of language to a movement where the syntactical understanding of language is graphing from one of proposed meaning into one where language speaks for itself empathetically.

Page in union with the graphe, an act of scraping into that which has not existed, will exist, never exists, concerts with the external force of the reader’s inhalation and subsequent exhalation. As Jakobson writes concerning sound and word:

a word, like any verbal sign, is a unity of two components. The sign has two sides: the sound, or the material side on the one hand, and meaning, the intelligible side on the other. Every word, and more generally every verbal sign, is a combination of sound and meaning, or to put it another way, a combination of signifier and signified (Language in Literature 56).

The movement of poetics therefore crosses from initial etymologies of historical meaning, which in turn, creates a reorganization of syntax. This reorganization works on both a synchronic and diachronic level in which formerly valid mass agreements of language have become no longer entrenched but rather unearthed, reorganized; a place where the synchronic is constantly in contact with the diachronic. Within Susan Howe, and subsequent poets there is an attempt, which will be examined, to look at both parties of language as existing at once. Word works through movement to become the poet’s breath and thus the movement itself is the word. Blanchot’s discussion on the word overcomes the idea that the word in poetry is pushing away from a stagnant, historical, linguistically lexicon-based system of symbolic meaning, which revels upon a single voice. If it is then understood, as Jakobson writes, that the breath of movement allows for a “language which speaks itself: language as the work and the work as language” (Language in Literature 41). Then poetry, at its finest, exists outside of the parameter of cultured time. If there is to be memory outside of time, there must be shape.

have the speech retaliate let night open its ear against and through; above. rapture presents cold fortune in wave-lengths. Time is a bridge a pop a luck spell cast and lusted after, a tug against rounded jaw bone sanded down thighs.

-Mallarme “Dice Thrown”

Graphe: to scratch, to scrape, to graze. Junction of sound and breath through the projection of time. The poet scratches and scrapes at persons, cities, landscapes. Not just in association with the X, Y-axis of the synchronic and diachronic, but rather that which correlates with the gesture of language outside of the range of accepted language semiotics. This formulation of language in change occurs when the trace is allowed to act in the “past”, “present” and “future”. The graphe becomes writing of before, an inking of absence and a weaving of time. As Gary Snyder writes in his book of poetry, Danger on Peaks, “‘Graph’ is the claw-curve, carve— grammar a       weaving” (Snyder 60). Accentuation of what the graphe pursues through breath. Ideas and words such as suffering, lust, love, become de-habituated through the scrape of graphe. To graphe in poetics, the word comes not first from the poet, but turns from outside in: a concert of both the internal and external. Saying that the act of graphing is a creature of sound is to say that the act of making sound in itself is creation. This then leads the poet to the act of removing the bridle of language: debridement. How can the poet use the graphe, a creation of language from the breath, without contaminating the word itself? As Sarah Dillon sees it, “there is no necessary relationship between the texts that co-inhabit the space of the palimpsest”; the written word then inhabits the space of the breath and vice versa, for “one text is not derived from the other, one does not serve as the origin of the other” (The Palimpsest 47). The language itself is accentual within the page. The graphe serves as function of breath and in turn creates a sedimentary textual experience. As one sees in Charles Olson’s, Maximus Poems, the textual is a response to the breath and the sedimentary nature of language, which constructs the text itself.

The symbol itself cannot be easily disregarded. The “Différence is therefore the formation of form. But on the other hand the being-imprinted of the imprint.” (Derrida, Of Grammatology 63) Graphe must come from sound, from breath, and also from silence, though not through erasure.

Writing begins only when it is the approach to that point where nothing reveals
itself, where, at the heart of dissimulation, speaking is still but the shadow of
speech, a language which is still only its image…the one nobody speaks, the
murmur of the incessant and interminable which one has to silence if one at
last wants to be heard (Blanchot, The Space of Literature 48).

In Susan Howe’s writing, silence presents itself through the page but also through the accumulation of breath — breath that has been made silent in books, people, and ideas throughout historical time. What Howe accomplishes in The Articulation of Sound Forms in Time is the transference of pre-established norms of syntactical literary texts into variances of time and sound. In Howe’s verse, there is no limitation in time that corresponds to limitation in space. Howe proposes a constant in consonant that shifts through a melding of synchronic and diachronic understanding. The poem itself is challenging the idea that “the past is normally depicted by a series of metaphors whose material is in the present” (Jakobson, Language in Literature 34). Understanding how the graphe is a creature of sound is to understand the creation of sound in history through the function of non-linear time; “the history of a system is in turn a system.” (Jakobson, Language in Literature 35) does not mean that the poetry functions solely on the function of the sign.

Howe works with the language of Hope Atherton, the puritan reverend whose story will be discussed to exemplify sound and its structure throughout time, inside a sign signified by sound implemented grapheme. “Hope’s literal attributes. Effaced background dissolves remotest foreground. Putative author, pre-modern condition, presently present what future clamors for release” (Howe, Singularities 4). Now, the word in question is hope, how the symbol of hope acts as an icon for a function in time. The relationship between the sound and idea of hope before language is where the act of graphing becomes the actualization of meaning. Hope, beginning with h, which is a glottal fricative, does not have any vocal chord movement; more air is released from the lungs, which articulates release through anticipation. The airstream is pulmonic, forcing breath from the lungs and diaphragm. The mouth is used only once air has passed through the throat. How do these physiological creations correlate to the function of poetry?

In the first section of the poem, Howe reveals that Hope has been thatched and set on fire to run through the village after being captured by the Mahicans. Breath is expelled in the utterance of the word, yet there is a shift in the sign and signifier. The existence of symbol representing sound created from breath outside the body itself to create interpretation of a word such as hope. Fire is signifying hope as a sign that is shifting meaning even though sound has not changed. The graphe then is a creature of sound; graphe created from graphe, and meaning is presented by language, which surrounds word. Breath is present culling outwards in. How the word is transferred does alter the meaning but it does not account for how the simultaneous occurrence of time and meaning create disruptions in the graph.

Howe is interested in how Hope, commonly a woman’s name, was given to Hope Atherton. Hope Atherton, a Puritan Reverend, found himself before the Native Americans who would not capture him. Hope also found himself on the east side of the Connecticut River while the battle was on the west. He then claimed in his writings that the Native Americans thought he was the white man’s god. No one believed Hope and he died soon after the incident. What of Hope and the name itself? Or perhaps a better manner in which to place that question is what does the word do in correlation to its sound and engrained meaning? Hope, as Howe sees the word, is working inside of Jakobson’s statement that “no one will call a ‘key’ a lock, but this does not mean that the word lock has only one meaning” (Sound Shape of Language 27). Meaning is created and transformed not only in movement of the body but also in the vibration of sound. With Howe this sometimes means our memory anticipates the scratch of memory. “From seaweed said nor repossess rest/ scape esaid” forms the sounds for which the reader will be carried along throughout the entirety of the poem. Sound has broken down in its attempt to become graphe (Howe, Singularities 1). Language becomes sound, and meaning is left behind as arbitrary, time has passed before the word’s meaning has been established; the word is acting as a graphe of time and sound, and is the articulation of the poems sum. Howe is not searching for sense as much as the incorporation of language to resist the word’s own symbol in time. From seaweed said, the first word being a preposition orients the reader spatially, while seaweed orients as a noun. Said on the other hand, acts in the simple past tense before negating the first sequence with nor. Howe is allowing the graphe to function outside of time so as to allow breath into the lungs and create language weary of symbolism. This parallels Hope, who is also trying to escape in a state, as accounted by Stephen Williams, which was “suggesting he was beside himself” (Howe, Singularities 5). Hope has removed language from time by removing himself as graphe. Howe has removed time from Hope in the opening epitaph in order to allow the language to bloom. The idea of Hope as both person and word has become a creature of memory and in poetry; “the point,” as Blanchot writes, “whence we see them as irreducible, puts us at the vanishing points ourselves; it is the point at which here coincides with nowhere” (The Space of Literature 48). Howe works then in the index of the photograph, as will later be explored. To this point it is important to understand that “no one writes who has not enabled language to maintain or provoke contact with this point” (Blanchot, The Space of Literature 48).

With Charles Olson, the poem is energy of the breath at “the kinetics of the thing”: how language implements momentum backwards and forwards while never sacrificing the moment presented in the word created and presented (Projective Verse 1). When Olson is strongest, his poetry is balanced at the point where the diachronic and synchronic are consistently meeting. Though it is not only the place where the ley lines meet the crossroads of language, but also the sound and breath in correlation with the consistent meeting of past and present on ever shifting points on an axis of memory.

            Land’s End-
and then                                              (Olson 515)

Here, the increase and fall in speech brings the reader to the end of both place and time, word and language, a conjunction towards infinity. The first four words of the poem are nouns. The nouns take on the qualities of each other, which inherently juxtaposes the conjunction and, and final adverb then. The movement of Land’s pushes the breath and language forward while remaining not in a singular place of End but a multiplicity of ends. Land’s End is Time’s End. The loss of land acting as loss of movement.

End, the naming of death, and also a representation which points to death and also new beginnings. There are also the low vowels in “Land’s” and “End” which bring the reader not only forward but anticipating a “fall”, though the fall does not occur. There is a movement occurring in breath but also subject. Then, seemingly acting as a temporal location of a certain time compels the image towards the emptiness that is the page. The space itself becomes the movement that shades the gradation of the word.

Language, as presented by the Old Indic Theoreticians, creates distinctions of language and sounds. Sphota, the Sanskrit for “bursting, opening, spurt” is used by Patañjali, a compiler of Yogi Sutras from the 2nd century BCE, to explain how language “bursts” forth of meaning from the articulation of sound in three different mechanisms. These notions of Sphota are compiled in the Vākyapadīya and are broken down into three different categories.

One is the varna sphota, at the syllable level, expressing parts of sense in the whole is the movement of poetics sense of meaning. The dhvani, “speech sound” and sabda, “non-speech sound” act as a basis for the understanding that, before language was articulated into phonetic structures, there was a language based of movement. As seen in The Sphota Theory of Language: A Philosophical Analysis, the sound itself is what creates the sabda. This language of gesture and breath is the originality of movement to create meaning in non-linear time scopes.

In Kumarila’s view, it is the fact of being audible which should be taken as
the criterion for sabda, and it is the phonemes alone (even if they may not
convey meaning) which conform to a standard. It is the phonemes which
are commonly accepted as sabda…the signifying power is the criterion
condition for sabda does not mean the word ceases to be a word when it
fails to communicate. According to the Grammarian, the key point is that
the word is capable of relaying meaning – regardless of its being
understood or not understood in specific instances. (Coward 91)

The movement of the body can only exist with the corresponding air to fill the lungs, to circulate the blood, to create gesture and sound. Thus, when speech was created from sound, mind, and memory, the operations increased within several movements; the vaikrta- dhvani, “modified sound”, prakrta-dhvani, “primary sound” worked as umbrellas for the whole of a speech community to create a meaning that works inside of both breath and inspiration, inhalation and exhalation from the breath to the graphe.

Secondly, there is the pada-sphota, which centralizes at the word level. Word and sound intention working together to create a shift in meaning. Language in Poetics strays further from the basic range of communication in a speech community. Olson’s poetry is grounded sensually to the land, while for Howe the language becomes fragments of sound in correlation to their relational axis of meaning on several oscillations of time. First, examine Charles Olson, and one of The Maximus Poems, for an example of how the pada-sphota relates to a graphe; Creature/Creation within sound of palimpsest in regards to word, sound, and meaning.

            wonis kvam
HARBOR the back
of the Cape bump
Lobster Cove    bump

        Goose Cove run    bump
Mill River—right there Alewife

            or Wine
in Winter
Time   GRAPE    VINE

HOEK    wyngaer’s

HOEK    Dutch

bottom    Svenska

bottom    ladder

of the Cut water

ran up hill from bump

on earth’s

tit (Olson 410)

Here we see the language begin in a place where the current reader of the English language would seemingly be lost in terms of initial meaning. Olson is grounded in the land. The language itself is always in the land, and the breath in, which one receives upon such land. “Wonis kvam is Old Norse-Algonquin for the river Annisquam,”which, though the reader might not initially be aware of such meaning cognitively, is aware because the sound produced interweaves in and out of the space between language and sound on the page (Butterick 548). Pada-Sphota inhabits where word and sound intention are catalysts for the coalescing between page and breath. Olson writes as if the reader is simultaneously inhabiting the land as those who understood the etymology of wonis kvam would have.

The poem begins offset to the right. The author delegates time to the abscess of graphe, allowing for the word to linger in the sound created by the individual phonemes presented. HARBOR the back reveals the sound meaning, or one of the meanings, of wonis kvam (the river Annisquam) with Olson’s use of capitalization in HARBOR (410). That which is protection maps to that which was once simultaneous for protection. This is the concert of Sphota, graphe, and the creation of meaning through a palimpsest. “The sphota functions exactly like a transcendental category of the whole” (Coward, The Sphota Theory of Language: A Philosophical Analysis 67) Olson is moving through the landscape while remaining still. Sound progresses the implication of the “space” between the page and the reader. Each cove acts as markers along the HARBOR’s back, into which the language can then shift, and leaves both the reader and author behind progressing in meaning into the third Sphota; Vakya.

Thirdly, there is vakya-sphota, or “sentence vibration”, thought is exchanged between listener and reader in regards to the whole of the poem. Thought then becomes a whole of separate parts, leaving all three actions of the Sphota working together to create multiplicities of meaning. This leads into the idea of language as an act of conjuring.

In Madhava’s Sarva-Darsana-Samgraha the argument is put this way, …as the letters cannot cause the cognition of the meaning, there must be a sphota by means of which arises the knowledge of the meaning; and this sphota is an eternal sound distinct from the letters and revealed by them which causes the cognition of meaning (Coward, 66-67)

Index of Sounds:wedlock2Language as Movement:
Photo+graphs; Shifted, Seized/Conjured

wedlock3, is the Nordic Rune for /S/, and originally meant “Sun” and was pronounced Sōwilō.

Photo+graph. Phot, the prevocalic morpheme combined with the Greek phos, light, further combined with graphe, as explored before, is poetically, the assemblage of conjuring presentation; the obsession of functionality through shifting, shifted captured moments, not necessarily images transferred photo sensitively, but rather through language, with the mental allowance for loss of mental capacity. Again, look to Blanchot:

Fascination is solitude’s gaze. It is the gaze of the incessant and
interminable. In it blindness is vision still, vision which is no longer the
possibility of seeing, but the impossibility of not seeing, the impossibility
which becomes visible and perseveres -always and always- in a vision that
never comes to an end: a dead gaze, a gaze become the ghost of an
eternal vision. (Blanchot 32)

The act of photo+graph and language is where Hope Atherton is created as an after image of language. Howe structures and deconstructs hope through the sounds created individually at the phonemic level. Language before language, but full with a meaning based upon sight and touch. Photo+graph is the illumination and difference of the sign and signifier. How is hope the illumination of sound in time and poetry? Through the sound which metonymically correlates from outside the symbol comes the poetic nuisance. “The diminutive consonantal symbolism…the diminutive meaning in its various nuances and metaphoric and metonymic extensions proves to be the most widely spread of the shifts.” and the “particular kind of synesthesia between sound, sight, and touch” (Jakobson 202). Howe conjures symbols in the place of objects, as the objects themselves are extensions of breath. Howe uses hope throughout “Articulations of Sound Forms in Time” metonymically to show the dream & memory are never really separate. Multiple connections of where the meaning shifted. Photo+graph as Photo+graph; becoming the difference in the captured moment of time functioning outside of time.

How does sound work within the concept of Photo+graph? Look now to the structure of the glottis. The glottis is the vocal chords and the space in between. “The glottis closes for the ‘voiced’ consonants and opens for the ‘voiceless’, “whether there is voicing or not.”’(Jakobson, Sound Shape 137) Jakobson discusses how “laxness tends to be associated with voicing, and voicelessness to tenseness.”(Sound Shape 138) Light sounds inter-disposed between and around shadow[2] sounds opens and closes the form within the smallest unit, the grapheme. Sound inflection directly correlates to a cognitive understanding of the grapheme, as the language and poet allow each other space for mental instability on the page. Susan Howe begins section two “Hope Atherton’s Wanderings” with the lines “Prest try to set after grandmother/revived by and laid down left ly.” Prest is the Latin word for “ready; in hand”. The combination of lit and unlit sounds, by using the r and s in concert, lends to a stretching of meaning, which the graphic substance gathers as assertion of memory. The grapheme t in Prest lingers into try, creating a phot+graph effect, which strengthens the need for being ready, and for hope to shift. Howe then creates a glitch of language from after into grandmother. The image presented is as important in ink, as when breath passes through the glottis aloud. Illumination of the grapheme leads to a play in language, allowing creation of sound forms in time that are articulated beyond the substance of constructed meaning. If Grandmother is now signifier, what becomes of the word signified? Derrida looks at writing before the letter, the trace, the image before the image. The word before the word. That which has been conjured. Grandmother acts as a trace, for “to see to it that the beyond does not return to the within”; Howe is allowing for language to illuminate through sound and to shift the image in use of shadows “is to recognize in the contortion the necessity of a pathway [parcours]” or in Howe’s case ley lines (Derrida 61). Howe is creating trace through illumination and shadow. Language is strung together through the blank spaces between phonemes to create time that is not occupied in any particular sustainable juncture. The signifier of grandmother then becomes signified by the sound structure of revival; its semiotic meaning is shifted, by and laid down left ly, where the y contorts to prevent erasure. Air to breath, breath to lungs through glottis, glottis to tongue through bilabial, to ear. Pigment to pen, pen to hand, hand to thought, to scratch, to eye. Illumination; “first thought and spoken, thinkable and speakable, in the eternal present of the divine logos and specifically in its breath” (Derrida 73).

Now, in Olson’s untitled poem from The Maximus Poems, section V, words illuminate through supplemental meaning. How the aperture of the glottis interconnects with the aperture of the eye. A silhouette is created from the trace of the word and causes afterimages to act in place with the image not seen.

only Ubaid
gets “in”
to riverine

Old Norse/ Algonquin
(The Maximus Poems 286)

Off-upland brings the tongue to the center off the mouth and opens the lips into a rounded incline, which descends into f, a voiceless labiodental fricative. The negation is then conjoined with upland. Relative direction (implying more), gives towards raised land within the sound of u and its phonetic form. There is a lilting downwards and away from the text while the sounds created lift. Graphe is working in one direction while sound is working in another. Olson is pushing away from the hill towards the riverine, to become like the river, riverine constricts sound, likening the shift in meaning. Words are transferring recognition from reflection. The v in river produces a manner of articulation, which is fricative. The airflow is constricted and narrow. The aperture is forced to tremble creating the sound. Graphe is to think and lure, or perhaps summon, without recognition of time and space, but always remaining cognizant of space in time. Movement is strident and pushed into recalculations of meaning. Trace is established within the blank space of the page through breath, which has been manipulated by the body. Riverine: to resemble the river. The lips are rounded and the tongue is pulled back to the brink of consonant classification. There is a making smaller of breath within the expansion of both immersion and reflection. Jakobson writes that “In contradistinction to the relatively transient consonantal phonemes, vowels have been repeatedly delineated as relatively sustained, stationary units, prone to extension in time (Sound Scape of Literature 143). How then does the extension of time appertain into the aperture? Closure from (Squam, the single bracket parentheses which sets itself apart, acts as the glottal restriction of the graph. Voiceless. Parenthesis act as material that could be omitted without destroying or altering the meaning.[3] Squam as fisherman or oilskin cap, cannot then be dismissed, but will not be admitted. It is the breaking away then towards what light is thrown through the aperture of both glottis and eye. Air and ink creating discourse. The bracket is the hinge. As Derrida writes:

The only weakness is the bricolage–but, seen as a weakness is it not
irremediable? –is a total inability to justify itself in its own discourse.
The already-there-ness of instruments and of concepts cannot be undone
or reinvented. In that sense, the passage from desire to discourse always
loses itself in bricolage, it builds its castles with debris. (Of Grammatology 139)

The aperture then has to open, to breach. For, as Helene Stafford writes the “white space is too strikingly self-conscious to be ignored, a referent within which the more extraordinary syntactical events can take place.”[4] The noun (thing) heaves forward phonetically and graphically towards the noun (things), Old Norse/Algonquin. Two languages brought together, slash acting as conjunction without the use of sound to illuminate, only graphe acts. “Algonquin is from either Maliseet, elakómkwik’, these are our relatives’, or Micmac, ‘algoomeaking’ at the place of spearing fish and eels’.[5] (Squam, Norse/Algonquin work in the presence of the other. The laryngeal, or creaky voice, and a grammatology, not consistently searching for a singular meaning, rather a multiplicity; for the aperture in waiting action to explore language in the abyss of the dream.

Index of Sounds: wedlock4Letter as Claw of Movement:

wedlock5,the Nordic Rune for /w/, with a proto-germaic meaning of joy or Wunjō[6].

“The other whom I love and who fascinates me is atopos. I cannot classify the other, for the other is, precisely, Unique…The other is the figure of my truth, and cannot be imprisoned in any stereotype (which is the truth of others).” (Barthes, Lover’s Discourse 45)

That which the writer is proposing to resurrect has always been resurrected.

Eros.[7] Beginning. The concept of such atramentous ramblings that interject no matter the influx of satisfaction. From the letters in between shades of language; inside the graphe, and language acting as its beak; for a mouth is a place of inhabitance. Ink to write momentarily; water and its movement. The flowing tone that is not grounded in “Moral love” as Derrida writes of:

    not having any biological foundation, is born of the power of the
imagination. All the depravity of culture, as the movement of
difference and preference…Thus writing, here literary, conspires with
moral love. The first appears at the same time as the second. But moral
love degrades even writing. It enervates writing as enervates man. it provokes (Of Grammatology 181)

Susan Howe writes within the eros of the {     }. From the letters in between:

Rash catastrophe deaf evening
Bonds loosd catcht sedge environ
extinct ordr set tableaux. (Singularities 8)

The language is based towards a gesture apparent in the movement of the sounds created at the boundary line of the diachronic and synchronic; the ship upon se. Sign renounces, then lives in the signified without calculation. Eros is then gesture of breath to speech; ink to page. In shadow declaring remembrance. Rash catastrophe is never separate or broken from deaf evening; rather the two come together within the line to remember the anamnesis of solitude. Continuous movement within stillness of the line redefines structural aptitudes. The monosyllabic rash, “finds its counterpart in prolongation as a typical particularity of the tense consonants in their opposition to the unmarked, lax ones” (Jakobson 146). For where catastrophe meets deaf evening there is a provocation of silence. Howe is bound within the line then allows sound to open path again. Bonds loosd stutters immediately into catcht sedge environ. Hope is released to only to again be caught in reeds surrounding a would-be harmonious observation of the word’s meaning and the world Hope Atherton chooses not to understand. This is not eros as an index of sound. Here Howe shows the puritan’s refusal of an open text. Sedge acts in and with language as an etymological recursive. Sedge, now obsolete is a seat; ecclesiastical; a home, the seat of a heron while looking for prey; a privy, the anus. A marsh plant. This is to look at the index not for its main possible preoccupied sound. What is there to discover is the threshold between all of these meanings. Signifiers need not signify rather they now act as spells; they imply the form of the poem to cast off stereotypes in favor of an open graphe.

Meaning has been altered in the construction of a language the poet, and that which the poet of the graphe and sound, no longer controls. extinct ordr set tableaux. The language insists upon palimpsest. Eros is sublime in its attempt to be a threshold for empathy. Scratching out the before of linguistic interpretation, by understanding the gesture of the line and voice, in a ceaseless discourse.

Eros reaches for eros in the symbiosis of sounds and graphe. There are expenditures which awake within the language which disturb the “natural” function of speech and graphe. Eros has become in it itself a new word. Kristen writes:

All functions which suppose a frontier (in this case the fissure created by the act of naming and the logico-linguistic synthesis which it sets off) and the transgression of that frontier (the sudden appearance of new signifying chains) are relevant to any account of signifying practice, where practice is taken as meaning acceptance of a symbolic law together with a transgression of that law for the purpose of renovating it

(The Kristeva Reader 29)

Howe opens up the page and allows solitude to meet eros, to meet breath, to meet letter; Where structure is determined by the sounds of the ear, which composes without confines from the graphe, a meeting place reverberates and augments an inherent incantatory magic in the poem. “The word is not the thing, but a flash in whose light we perceive the thing” (Diderot). This is the moment where graphe finds Photo+graph and frees eros. Again, look to Howe’s Articulation of Sound Forms in Time.

        rest chondriacal lunacy
velc cello viable toil
quench conch uncannunc
drumm amonoosuck ythian
(Howe 10)

Here sound forms develop separate from time. The in between that which is presented as the thing compels an image to resonate. What Howe writes is not concerned solely with semiotic meaning of pre-established conceptions of language; as Kristeva writes “The science of linguistics has no way of apprehending anything in language which belongs not with the social contract but with play, pleasure or desire” (The Kristeva Reader 26). Here we have come to a shift in understanding the constructs of poetics. The inter-cooperation of sound, with shifting etymological understandings, linked to a graphe that has, in cooperation with the psyche, the ability to transform and find the new eros of the word. For, in the latter Howe selection, we see the words spread apart on the space of the page, in a demand for a permissive exchange of desire where time breaks down, sound remains, meaning shifts and acts as eros. This rest chondriacal lunacy begins a trembling freedom from toil to grave, linking within the language from Old English, to the present amorous relation of tension: chondriacal. Chondriacal acts as a symbiosis, an enwrapped extension of the Greek: groat, grain, any small rounded mass; cartilage, gristle, granule, or a relationship to cartilage. The suffix -al shifts the noun into an adjective, which de-scripts the noun “lunacy”. The sound structure, which begins monosyllabically, before slowing down the line with a polysyllabic adjective, finishes with the trisyllable, rounded lunacy. Structure of sound inhabits graphe allowing for the energy to shift(conjure) through transference.

The line breaks and there is an gap of space allowing for madness to, as Barthes writes “…make the other speak…there is no acting out: no propulsion, perhaps even no pleasure–nothing but signs, a frenzied activity of language: to institute, on each furtive occasion, the system (the paradigm) of demand and response” (Lover’s Discourse 68). There is a severity in the words, for Hope Atherton and the puritans still cannot relinquish in the language of their eros of other, one that allows for sound and gesture to relinquish control of one sided discourse, and move towards an understanding with the perceived native “heathen” . Here now the tongue moves in velc cello viable toil. Starting the line with a voiced labiodental fricative, its production caused by constricting air flow through a narrow channel of articulation, causes turbulence. The v is created with the lower lips and upper teeth. Airflow is not produced over the tongue. Language is constituted off the syllabic sounds to follow consonant into consonant. Velc is cello, cello is viable toil acting as empathetic mirrors of eros. There is a direct mimicry through perception that occurs on a syllabic level reacting forwards and backwards in a synchronic/diachronic place of contact discourse. One must be careful in attempting to decipher such text. There is no singular cipher, rather a multiplicity of language that calls for privacy. One will not “tell”, the reader, Howe, or Hope Atherton what “velc cello viable toil” means. Instead one should focus on the augmentation of expression or conjured gesture of language.

Kristeva understands the syllabic structure that compels the language in breath and graphe. She notes that “at a higher level the spoken chain consists not of words but of phonetic groups constituted by a stress on the last syllable.” The phonetic sounds act upon on another in the space of the page to differentiate one another; not to redeem for any other purpose than to become the gesture of language. The line: quench conch uncannunc / drumm amonoosuck ythian, then articulates the behavior of consciousness through mark and relation[8]. Howe has presented quench conch as mirrors within a syllabic gesture. Within poetry the reader refers to the cognitive situation of the present, supplements and realizes/releases graphe without realization of thirst. Uncannunc, the meeting place of Hope, Howe, and the Narragansett’s. Language in its “normal” function of transference cannot become all three at once without allowing for the hallucination of sound and written mark. I disagree with Marjorie Perloff’s assumption that the “syntax all but breaks down into babble”.(“On Hope Atherton’s Wanderings”) The trace is what allows for eros to become the “claw” of language. There are layers of language existing within each other. The risk involved with trying to apprehend meaning resolves the structure between sound and ink dried. Again Kristeva:

A real combination of objects can represent writing, that is to say, langua-
ge. In this case, the object or group of objects is removed from its practical
utility and articulated as a system of differences that become signs for the
subjects of the communication…A more appropriate example of a graphic
system most resembling writing that is truly traced is furnished by “writin-
gs” formed of a “general equivalent”, that is to say, a single material
whose different presentations serve to indicate different objects. (Language-the
unknown 25)

We then arrive upon the final line of the first half of the page to demonstrate the eros of language within poetics. Letter as claw and movement. drumm, the Anglo Saxon noun followed by amonoosuck, an Algonquin word meaning “fishing place”[9]; and finally by ythian, the Greek root. Language is leaving behind meaning to find the impossibility of time and meaning through trace. The poet does not need to be deciphered, rather what the poet writes is the catastrophe as Barthes speaks of

 Violent crisis during which the subject , experiencing the amorous,
situation as a definitive impasse, a trap which he can never escape,
sees himself doomed to total destruction (Lover’s Discourse 48).

Hope Atherton is entrenched in the impossible gesture of time, and his loss is not for which the poet laments.

Poetic discourse recognizes that the co-mingling of language is not the destruction  or combination of a particular semiotic approach. It is the waiting for creation; for then “[…] we have to move out of the enclosure of language in order to grasp what is going on in the genetic temporality which logically precedes the constitution of the symbolic function” (Kristeva 140).

Index of Sounds:wedlock6

“For from the root out, from all over the place, the syllable comes, the figures of, the dance”-
Charles Olson -Projective Verse-
wedlock7  , is the Nordic Rune for /l/. The Proto-Germanic meaning is “laguz”, meaning “water, lake, or possibly “leek”

Poems are both the lake and sediment. The nature of a poem functions well as a palimpsest. Sarah Dillon writes, “the process of layering…produces a palimpsest’; while the ‘palimpsestuous’ describes the structure that one is presented with as result of the process, and the subsequent reappearance of the underlying script” (The Palimpsest: Literature, Criticism, Theory 4). If Language is the culmination of sounds that inform meaning from one being to another to form a dialogue; then Poetry is the meeting of the graphe, sound, and palimpsest on a boundary line of meanings, where seams of reality interweave with that which the dream seeks to map.

[1] Nordic religions in the Viking Age by Thomas Andrew Dubois.

[2] By light and shadow here the author is referencing the idea of the sun rune mentioned before. Also, this relates to the idea of mouth as aperture.

[3] Fogerty, Mignon. “Parentheses, Brackets, and Braces.”

[4] Mallarme and the Poetics of Everyday Life by Helene Stafford.

[5] Blomfield, Leonard, ed. Harry Hijer Linguistic Structures of Native America .

[6] Freeborn, Dennis. From Old English to Standard English.

[7] The sum of life-preserving instincts that are manifested as impulses to gratify basic needs, as sublimated impulses, and as impulses to protect and preserve the body and mind; a love conceived by Plato as a fundamental creative impulse having a sensual element. Webster’s.

[8] Language–the unknown: and initiation into Linguistics By Julia Kristeva, Anne M. Menke.

[9] Native American place names of the United States by William Bright.

Works Cited

Bachelard, Gaston, and M. Jolas. The Poetics of Space. Boston: Beacon, 1994. Print.

Barthes, Roland. Elements of Semiology. New York, NY: Hill and Wang, 1995. Print.

Blanchot, Maurice. The Space of Literature. Lincoln: University of Nebraska, 1982. Print.

Budick, Sanford, and Wolfgang Iser. Languages of the Unsayable: the Play of Negativity in Literature and Literary Theory. New York: Columbia UP, 1989. Print.

Butterick, George F. A Guide to The Maximus Poems of Charles Olson. Berkeley: University of California, 1978. Print.

Coward, Harold G. The Sphota Theory of Language: A Philosophical Analysis. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 1980. Print.

Delling, Daniel, and D. Wagner. Engineering and Augmenting Route Planning Algorithms. Springer Berlin Heidelberg: 2009, Print.

Dillon, Sarah. The Palimpsest: Literature, Criticism, Theory. London: Continuum, 2007. Print.

Derrida, Jacques. Of Grammatology. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins UP, 1998. Print.

Derrida, Jacques, Alan Bass, and Henri Ronse. Positions. Chicago: University of Chicago, 1981. Print.

Foucault, Michel, and Paul Rabinow. The Foucault Reader. New York: Pantheon, 1984. Print.

Howe, Susan. Souls of the Labadie Tract. New York: New Directions, 2007. Print.

Howe, Susan. Singularities. [Middletown, Conn.]: Wesleyan UP, 1990. Print.

Jakobson, Roman, Martha Taylor, and Linda R. Waugh. The Sound Shape of Language. Berlin: Mouton De Gruyter, 2002. Print.

Jakobson, Roman, and Stephen Rudy. Language in Literature. Cambridge, MA: Belknap, 1987.Print.

Kristeva, Julia. Speaking the Unspeakable. London [u.a.: Pluto, 1998. Print.

Kristeva, Julia, and Toril Moi. The Kristeva Reader. New York: Columbia UP, 1986. Print.

Olson, Charles, and George F. Butterick. The Maximus Poems. Berkeley: University of California, 1983. Print.

Olson, Charles. Charles Olson [works by Charles Olson and on Charles Olson. Shippensburg, PA: J. Taggart, 1971. Print.

Olson, Charles. Projective Verse. New York: Totem, 1959. Print.

Olson: the Journal of the Charles Olson Archives. Storrs, Conn, 1974. Print.

Perloff, Marjorie. “On “Hope Atherton’s Wanderings” University of Illinois. Web. 20 Jan. 2016.

Rankine, Claudia, and Juliana Spahr. American Women Poets in the 21st Century: Where Lyric Meets Language. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan UP, 2002. Print.

Snyder, Gary. Danger on Peaks: Poems. Washington, DC: Shoemaker & Hoard, 2004. Print.