Ceremony/In a Lonely Place

More on space vs. place. Have just about finished Speaking Into The Air, which I won’t do the injustice of a quick summary — read it, it’s beautiful. And relevent, in some way, to what we’ve been discussing here. Amongst other threads, Peters seems to balance the value of empathy and an awareness of the singleness of singleness against the romantic notion of ‘communication’ as a meeting of souls, calling for

…a softening of the heart, an admission of the inefficacy of our glassy essence against the awe of strangeness (p. 259)

He doesn’t talk directly about the phenomenology of place and space, but I think there’s something in the idea of a place having as one of its characteristics that it makes manifest the impossibility of such a meeting of souls, while being yet maleable enough that it may show the marks (patina?) of our endlessly failing attempts — a place is that whereby (amongst other things) loneliness (or oneliness) is possible to be made manifest.


  1. that too.

    i think its kind of working towards a working definition — i think that shows why {r,g,b} can’t constitute a place, but a painted wall can be (or a pantone discussion list, or rgb@jabber.org, or @go rbg inmoo etc). i don’t mean the definition to sound as abject as it might — its somewhere between eliots ‘…to kneel/where prayer has been valid’ and beckett’s ‘try. fail. try again. fail better’. i guess you kind of have to read the book to see in what way a view of communication as continually ‘speaking into the air’ (corinthians) as a not miserable (or miserablist) affair…

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