Friday, April 3, 2009

Or Take This Morning's Minion

Or take this morning’s minion, kingdom of relativity, for example. This is the universe we’re talking about now. How the universe works. The one verse works. How this immaterial material cosmological construct behaves.

And so the theory of relativity apparently has some rather paradoxical and perhaps ambiguous and perhaps ambivalent consequences:

1. Two events that are simultaneous for some observer may not be simultaneous for another observer, if the two observers are in relative motion.
2. Moving clocks tick more slowly than a “stationary” observer’s clock.
3. Objects shorten in the direction that they are moving with respect to an observer.
4. Time goes more slowly in higher gravitational fields.
5. Light bends in the presence of a gravitational field.

This is of course in the physical immaterial material cosmological construct. And specifically in the wonderful world of physics. And this paradoxical theory was first floated. Oh. A hundred years ago or so. So this idea isn’t new. No. It’s older than the Model T Ford.

So it’s old hat now.

Keep in mind that this is not hallucination. No. This is how space-time itself is made. Imagined. How it is structured. How it is being imagined. How it is being formed. Informed. Paradoxically. Ambivalently. Ambiguously.

There’s nothing like your grandfather’s clock about this. There’s nothing as quietly and calmly predictable and polite as a grandfather’s clock. No. This is more like. Oh. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

Or take Gerard Manley Hopkins’s poem, “The Windhover.” A poem about a bird that is not a bird. A paradoxical. An ambivalent. A bird that is Christ himself. A terrible, fierce, carnivorous bird. A beautiful, bright, ecstasy of a hunting and then a dropping bird. Dropping for the kill. Christ-Falcon. The killer of little field beasties. Bunnies romping in the field! Innocent little bunny poets!

It’s one of my favorites. Here it is:

“I caught this morning morning’s minion, king-
dom of daylight’s dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon, in his riding
Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding
High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing
In his ecstasy! Then off, off forth on swing,
As a skate’s heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding
Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding
Stirred for a bird, - the achieve of, the mastery of the thing!

Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here
Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion
Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!

No wonder of it: sheer plod makes plough down sillion
Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,
Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.”

And of course this poem is old hat now as well, having been written before the turn of the century. The 20th century, that is.

A poem in which the speaker sees Christ and a falcon or kestrel as one being. One image. One multi-identity being. Masterfully hunting and then dropping to kill what? The speaker? The speaker-bunny? The floppy-eared poet? It seems like that.

And then where in the heck does plowing up a field come from in those last three lines? They also are linked imaginatively. They also are imagined by the poem’s speaker (who appears to speak to us and imagine this poem each time the poem is read) to be intimately related to the Christ-Falcon. Because. Well, look here. The earth. The dirt itself! As it is turned over by the plow. Is burning also. Is glowing also with the intensely bright. The brilliant! Glory of God.

So the terrible and the beautiful and the dirty and the lofty and the sacred and the carnal are all one. All contrasting. All contradicting. Yet holding somehow together in one imaginative experience. The one verse of our experience. The one physical immaterial material cosmological construct of our lives.

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