shamanic mallarmé

Image: Berry Bicke


Mallarmé's muse devours books like the black hole devours pasta

Write as if you were the penultimate writer. In a silence prolonged by the lines that follow, total slope. The abyss, the gap. It's time for the dive. Zarathustra, that Nietzschean, thought it well: advising to dive into absolute declension, giving birth to the poem, “giving birth to a dancing star”. This indefinite space of the deep well, or the vacant sea, is the poetic image of a world without images, where the shipwrecked plan of the outside resonates, together with the Master's calculation (The master) by the ricochet of writing.

It is there, in the place where there is only the place, the unconditional effect of the experience of self-effacement, born of the impossible of choice. Nothing and no one can combat the phenomenon, as the uselessness of authority is revealed even through this engulfment. Done, being — this is the volatile dissemination of the work's power of resistance to what it does. In the work, what matters is never the individual, keeping only the decision of what it means to you. She, therefore, never stops talking. It never ends because its ultimate exhaustion depends on the origin, which is its end: it is always elliptical. Tracing in letters the finite time of the conversation, the dictate it transforms from the temple to the dungeon, thus moving the final erasure of its being. In the monologue: there is nothing more false in literature than the interior monologue.

The author's dismissal of the work shows the violence of the event. Writing is not simply graphic exposure to the eye: it is the radical certainty, yes, of the section, with the instrumental support of the stylus that it possesses. That is why, in it, attachment to nothing means exactly attachment to everything (at least in the so-called borderline, overflowing experiences). Extended, it is no longer written. Perhaps the most appropriate word, now, is (ex)crited: pulling the spool of language to the maximum so that it jumps to the outside, driven by the feeling of being lost. Tentatively, movements of appearance and disappearance are cyclical, but placed, paradoxically, at the same moment, during eternity.

Literature gives and takes away in the same word unit. Why that? If literature is fiction, where does your passion for everything that is not yours come from? When Mallarmé spoke ptyx In the sonnet, wasn't the irony in which literature exposes and ends emerging? From its opposite, denied but unable to die, comes the reality of fiction. The constellation of the two Ursas, hundreds of light years apart, dialogues with the constellation of letters on the white page, in the ideogram.

A coup de des It is a futuristic poem in that it installs the dead matter of the stars alongside human flesh. Not in a Kantian way (Mallarmé is the first writer, without prose, to crack the subjectivity/objectivity thesis): he did so, particularly, when he murdered the old Master by drowning, ruling the lack as constitutive of poetry, uniting the pen, full of paint and friction of presence (although subtracted and isolated), to the universe, full of absence and death. The last one wins.

Interregnum, literature acts on the threshold of the inclination towards death, prepared in the solitary act. Mallarmé knew in advance that no being is any longer a helper when the rift is subjected to its own care. Hence the surface of incalculable openness is born, as depth is reached as a limit-experience, in which the uniformity (of the traditional book) is disordered and the retreat of meaning reverberates (there is no telos). On occasion, one never dies completely; only by dyinjured death.

The specter of King Hamlet is complete proof of this truth of existences placed in the metamorphosis between material and immaterial, which cannot die because they forgot to die. Similar to the case of the hunter Gracchus, a Kafkaesque creation: incapable of death without being a living body. In both, the ontological status goes beyond and falls short of man. To the Master, what he wields with the dice in his hand in the poem, the insignia of the distressed. He hesitates to launch because he is oppressed by the sky and the sea: becoming a bridge between Hamlet (predecessor) and Gracchus (successor), he constitutes heroic diffusion by maneuvering the boat, by aiming at the insane waves of probability, knowing, in advance, his failure (perhaps the images of The drunken Boat, by Rimbaud, were crucial there).

The master is as much the man in the face of the absolute as the writer in the face of literature. It indicates a decisive bond of creation of new spatial geometries and new existences to come, even those we have never seen before, but already here, as a result of learning to subdue them historically. The character between past and future appears through the risk between chance and necessity in the figure of data. It is in this model of escape that the later immemorial demon and the primordial foams meet, both, through time, moving to reach the time of the bid.

The sepulchral silence challenges. This fictitious supernatural idea reacts against established determinism (chance is not absorbed by necessity, as necessity radically puts itself in contingency), thus expanding the possibility, the probable, the perhaps conjured by the Mallarmean text. Closure and opening, the poem consumes itself, the Book becomes the oroboro, eternally devouring its own tail: as soon as the Book affirms, it also denies. This is how the circle of becoming is exported to the poem, to literature, in whatever form. Operating by chance, refusing luck, the key phrase for the work is this: watching, doubting, rolling, shining and meditating.

The five points claimed go from poetic certainty to indeterminate movement (unstable balance by Claudel), both closing and opening matter, giving rise to the Sun of chance. Basically, this suicidal structure in Mallarmé is linked to the automatic writing that the surrealists talked about and sought in the 1920s, although in relatively opposite ways, in the human relegation to things. The manner of Mallarmé's haunting devil stands before the writer, with his mocking spirit, because the writer almost never knows about the pact that precedes each phoneme (or whiteness). In any case, due to the ornamental nature of the dispersive structure of the words, it creates real dissolution or, as the French poet said, the territory in which all reality dissolves.

Mallarmé is distant, contrary to what Oswald de Andrade thought, from the humanist apparatus. As he removed the strength of interiority from himself, external indifference remained. Me, without myself is the opening to amacted. Mens in alien conversation — notably, the door to modulation in otherness, placed in the wandering of dreams (I don't change. Something changes in me). These are bodily and imagery struggles against God, which the poet fights until he almost goes crazy, discovering Nothingness. Discovering the abyss has its price and, for him, the shipwreck executes, in particular, perhaps from the readings he had of Hegel, his unhappy conscience, his discomfort.

In this unrestrained enchantment, in which Mallarmé is willing to embody, the line between the beginning and end of literature emerges: perception breaks through and connects several heterogeneities, human or inhuman, current (at his time or for us) and ancestral. The end of literature is a beginning, given this end that will not exist as we know it, because it would liquidate the becoming of the always moving and displaced center. The perception, therefore, comes the threshold between the beginning and the end of the author, in the exchange of this figure for that of the shaman, Barthes's ethnographic rescue in 1968, a true dreamlike experience that literature has never disentangled itself from. Or it is not a perception, but a possessive crossing, possibly, to be exposed in a non-phenomenological line of the thing.

And how to evaluate this conception of Number? That single Number that cannot be another? What are the treatments in Mallarmaic writing that drive the septuor to the Absolute, explained in the geometric framework (cadre)? Number 7 ratifies the alternative numbers (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) and unites them in the proportion of drift, being the one that cannot change. Mallarmé, thus, evokes an absolute radicality in the literary experience: in literature, as the supernatural is never exorcised, what can pass moves towards spiraling destruction. Mallarmé's muse devours books like a black hole devours mass.

This is saying: this is right, this cannot be changed in any way, this is part of it. The not-all that remains is part of immutability, so, when literary writing is complete, it manages to deterritorialize itself. We can certainly think about skeptical undecidability in the face of everything. There we will be a little far from the radical certainty engendered by the poem, in which it clarifies and qualifies the substrate of the dice roll: 1+6 = 7, 2+5 = 7, 3+4 = 7. Mallarmé does not, however, follow the attempt Hegelian approach to conditioning chance on necessity. It's the opposite. What is absolute is the game. The name of the poem affirms what it denies: “a throw of the dice will never abolish chance” it also means that every throw of the dice is a necessity of the arbitrary, basing the game on the indeterminacy of imposition.

This Mallarmé overflow is evident, but in no way can it explain the moment in which it becomes an implication of modernist prejudice, only revised when the practice arises that, despite anticipating the innovation of contemporary poetics, Mallarmé ended up connect to the condition of all practice of speech since Homer. Conceiving him as a type of radical transformation in literature is worth the journey if, and only if, we also see him as an heir.

But, on the other hand, extemporaneous (from Cage's music to Rothko's painting), it will be up to the centuries that come to guarantee the A coup de des as a fundamental trace in the history of literature. Being the first conjurer, in fact, of this demon resident in every literary space, he passed the triumphal traces to the declaration of the enigmatic emergence. An enigma that is not an allegory, much less a symbol, but a hallucinating whisper (condolent murmur), supported, mind you, by everything that has happened and, moreover, by everything that could happen. A relationship, however, not totalitarian, but significantly arising from the (universal) Idea, updated, assured by the impersonalized domain of the silent letter, poetically made oblique on the planet and beyond.

Mallarmé's demon acts like this: for him, all becoming is duty, all literary demands are non-literary. This is an insensé d'écrire...

*Eduardo Galeno He has a degree in Literature from UESPI.

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