Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

    I'm new to the book-got it a few days ago. I'm new to the board-registered minutes ago. But I've done some searching, and found that nobody has mentioned this in any forum.

    in the Jan 11, '88 letter, we have that poem, printed at an angle. Now, I'm not sure the meaning of this entire verse, but if you read "you rid a sea with dance", it sounds as "Euridice with dance".

    Euridice, bride of Orpheus, who was bitten by a snake. And orpheus, son of Apollo who was the master of all things with his song, went to the underworld to bring her back, but at the last moment, looked back at her and she was lost there forever.

    Anyone got a take on the meaning of this bit?

  • #2
    Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

    It does fit the of Leaves story, only the sexes seem reversed. Will didn't lose Karen to the and he didn't have to go look for her inside it either, Karen lost Will and she had to find him. I wonder if there isn't more to this. Good job Orlm.
    -dAHMER

    Comment


    • #3
      Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

      Hrm.. you're right. it doesn't fit the HoL story.. it does, however, sort of fit the relationship between Johnny and his mother. I'm just not sure where dance fits into the story. She is cursed to be insane, and locked away (like Euridice dead on her wedding day) (who had been dancing with nymphs when she stepped on the snake..) and wants Johnny to come rescue her. He "is the only chance" ... though she talks of Johnny as an only child, so there's one point against the Johnny/Tom parallel.

      I'm not sure if there's a tie to the "don't look back" part of the Orpheus tale.

      *shrug* Time to pull out a few mythology books and come back later.

      It does fit the of Leaves story, only the sexes seem reversed. Will didn't lose Karen to the
      and he didn't have to go look for her inside it either, Karen lost Will and she had to find him.
      I wonder if there isn't more to this. Good job Orlm.

      Comment


      • #4
        Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

        Hey, your right. I never though about how it fits the Letters. Is this particular passage in of Leaves or just in the stand alone book. It would make sence, either way, that it applied to the Letters more than HOL. Let me know if you find any thing. This is one of the more concrete secrects I've heard of yet. If I remember the whole underworld story right, doesn't Euridice eat palmigranites (sp? sorry) from a tree in the underworld? Yggdrasil [img]images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]
        -dAHMER

        Comment


        • #5
          Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

          Persephone eats the pommegranate seeds ... she is the daughter of Demeter who remains trapped in the underworld with hades half of the year (because he tricked her into eating the seeds to keep her there) and spends the other half on earth with her mother - thus, the greek cosmology that explains the seasons (spring/summer and fall/winter) ... [sorry not HOL-related but it does address previous post]

          Comment


          • #6
            Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

            actually that myth has nothing to do with the seasons. the europeans added that part to the story. in its original form in greek myth it never even mentions the turning of seasons and that it has any relation to when she comes up to see her mother.

            Comment


            • #7
              Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

              Just yesterday I had pulled out my copy of Whalestoe (while waiting for an incredibly attractive barista to show up at work, but that's another matter) and was doing a little work on the book.

              This is the second reference to the Orpheus myth present in the letters, the first appearing in the July 24, 1985 letter. It's a few weeks after JT's first visit to his mother in the Whale and she's feeling a bit wary.

              quote
              Was it your leaving thatseemed to offer up a discordant note? The way you turned your back on your mother and only looked back twice, not that twice shouldn't have been more than enough, after all once was too much for Orpheus, but your lookings seemed to signal in my heart some message of mortal wrong.
              Perhaps the dance reference is more to point out the "snake" that has bitten her and condemned her to "hades". If the snake is her madness (which she seems to have danced with all her life), then the Whale would make a good Hades for her.

              It might also simply be to point out once again that Pelafina feels that, despite all her personal (and imagined) woes, she does not want Johnny to look back to her but forward into his own future. Something I feel that he ended up failing to succeed in.

              As a side note, both of these letters appear in HoL. Pages 604 and 628.

              [ November 23, 2001: Message edited by: endorphyne ]

              Comment


              • #8
                Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

                that is the common pronounciation of the name in america, but, the real one is more like...ayou-ree-dee-chay or if you know IPA e ju ri di' tSe. Hope this helps.

                Also, there is an opera, Euridice in Hell. (Enfer=Hell) in French, like on the back cover of HOL. another interesting bit.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

                  Seems to fit in with HoL in general. Not only the relationship of Navy and Karen but Johhny and his mad mom. His last memory of her in his own "five and half minute hallway" seems particularly relevant in conjunction with the Orpheus/Euridice reference.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

                    ha ha... and "or free us" as in "you steal her once, steal her twice, or free us with a glance" sounds a little like Orpheus. Tee hee.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

                      ORLM, I think that you're right on. Thank you so much for actualising something that runs as a curent through the letters. As for it 'fitting HoL', as another kindly conceded, absolutely.

                      Orpheus, like JT or WN, experience a descent into the dark in the hopes of rescuing or reconciling some relation with a woman, one they 'let die'. Without dwelling too much on 'reasons', these are my takes on it.

                      JT's may be, in part, his mother [I state the obvious], as evidenced by his continued use of her 'language' and his unrealistic ideation of women. He, like WN, is in some ways recapitulating his previous pain on a much larger psychic canvass.

                      WN's is as layered as JT's, relating to Delial in the first instance, Karen independently and thje mess with KJaren as a failed attempt at reconcilling Delial [Belial? Denial?].

                      As to 'fitting', myth generally keys this in for us. There are obvious reasons that our Mystagoge [Zampano] is Blind, and [Our Hera? Our Medea?] Pelafina Mad. There are deliberate reasons for each of the names of Zampano's 'loves', his readers et al. These are drawn from lore, art , myth, but most especially from a skein of 'the Classics' that seem to inform the [I shudder at the generality] 'Western Psyche'. The descent of Orpheus, like the trials of Odysseus, is then of course more than once referenced in the letters.

                      There's a reason the author of 'The Western Canon' is included in the respondent academics/authors/artists. [Bloom]

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Jan 11, 88- Euridice (read aloud)

                        Part of it, too, is in the 'Don't look back' idea, summarised both in the gloss on Reston [99] and the exploration of 'So?' following [102-4]. Part of this, in HoL proper, is addressed to pain, to the weight of the past and to these forces expression as Doubt. Doubt makes Orpheus turn around, Doubt no longer weighs on Reston, Doubt cripples Navidson.

                        In JT's recapitualation with his mother, throughout the book, we see some of those shards of doubt, doubts about 'psychiatric accuracy' [ie should he have left her there, should he have listened to the director]. doubts about a slowly eliding reality, doubts about the reality of his mother's sanity, or at least its implications.

                        Did not Medea slay her own children, betrayed?

                        [ July 06, 2002: Message edited by: pallasae ]

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I found something that might link...

                          I'm not sure if there's a tie to the "don't look back" part of the Orpheus tale.

                          I found a possible link to this. Johnny's mom says "Cast no backwards glances,eh" on page 635.... so maybe this links it to the Orpheus tale?
                          I am new to this book and started to read it as part of a book club with my company. I am an English teacher and am reading this with my advanced students. We're lovin it!

                          Comment

                          Working...
                          X