Unreal Nature

December 11, 2015


Filed under: Uncategorized — unrealnature @ 5:26 am

… Return the ball into the game.

This is from Bowstring: On the Dissimilarity of the Similar by Viktor Shklovsky; translated by Shushan Avagyan (1970; 2011):

… In the beginning of Fellini’s , the camera shows a city tunnel for motor vehicles. Trapped inside their cars, behind windows, people are suffocating from the smell of burning gasoline and lead salts emitting from their idling engines.

The world has come to a contradiction with itself: both the tunnel and the cars are made for speed, so that people can leave the city quickly, but some are suffocating as a result of an adverse effect.

… The main hero — the film’s director — is waiting for the end of the world. He builds a huge rocket that is supposed to fly over the Earth, saving a group of chosen individuals.

The rocket cannot go up. There are no cosmic Mountains of Ararat. These are unattainable things, and the film returns to self-replication, popular circus, farce, and old conventional heroes with whom the man who can’t finish his work leaves and passes through the frames of his own film.


… The journeys of Gilgamesh, who crossed the ocean with a pole, seem difficult to his descendents.

People write poems about writing poems.

Writers write novels about writing novels, film scripts about film scripts.

They are playing a tennis game without a ball, but the journeys of Gilgamesh, Odysseus, Pantagruel, and even Chichikov must have a purpose.

Return the ball into the game.
Return the heroic deed into life.
Return meaning to the movement — and not to the record of achievement.

[ … ]

… Ships — growing, changing their dimensions and names — sail away.
The lowered anchors in the ports connect them to the underwater side of the Earth.




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