Wednesday 25 March 2009

Que connaîtrions-nous d’autrui
si nous ne l’imaginions pas ?

Gaston Bachelard

What would we know of others if we didn't imagine them?


  1. when a dreamer of reveries has swept aside all the 'preoccupations' which were encumbering his everyday life, when he has detached himself from the worry which comes to him from the worry of others, when he is truly the author of his solitude, when he can finally contemplate a beautiful aspect of the universe without counting the inutes, the dreamer feels a being opening within him.... ; )

  2. indeed, swiss :-) you know, they say that an author who has been the focus of one's research is a sacrificed author, one can't find anymore pleasure in reading him. but Bachelard proves this wrong!

    does this mean you like the picture? or doesn't it qualify for an x? :-P

  3. c'est-à-dire elle n'est pas une communion elle est la face à face sans intermédiaire,sans médiation. Visage angelique.

  4. good point, i've been neglecting my x duties of late. normal service will be resumed!

  5. Allan, oui, j'aime beaucoup son visage moi-aussi.
    en effet, Bachelard dit que par l'imagination poetique l'objet nous est donne directement, sans mediation, on peut y avoir acces toute de suite, il n'y a pas de chemin a parcourir ou des egarrements a depasser comme c'est le cas de la connaissance rationale.

  6. "my x duties of late", ahhhh - swiss, this has killed me :-)))) I can't stop laughing. and I was totally lost in anguish here as to why there are no x any longer :-)

  7. que c'est beau, il y a tant de poésie dans vos photos... un talent incroyable... J'adore!

  8. A lovely, dreaming image.

    Everything depends on this, doesn't it, our ability to imagine others, their thoughts and desires, their motives --- all communication, everything that happens in relation to the other, even the other who is most near? And we think we understand, more or less, but who knows, really? Any standard for deciding assumes a priori that this imagining is possible....

    A poem by Jack Gilbert:

    Say You Love Me

    Are the angels of her bed the angels
    who come near me alone in mine?
    Are the green trees in her window
    the color I see in ripe plums?
    If she always sees backward
    and upside down without knowing it
    what chance do we have? I am haunted
    by the feeling that she is saying
    melting lords of death, avalanches,
    rivers and moments of passing through.
    And I am replying, “Yes, yes.
    Shoes and pudding.”

  9. omami, merci de tout coeur! on peut se tutoyer, n'est-ce pas? :-)

  10. :-)
    the poem is so beautiful and funny :-) thank you!!!

    and James, I think you are right, everything depends on it. I will quote from another poem that I know you like as much as I do, I have posted the beginning once and if I am not wrong, it was then that you wrote for the first time on my blog. Rilke, of course:

    All the huge
    images in me, the deeply-sensed far-away landscapes,
    cities and towers and bridges and un-
    suspected turns of the path,
    the powerful life of lands
    once filled with the presence of gods:
    all rise with you to find clear meaning in me,
    your, forever, elusive one.

    You, who are all
    the gardens I've ever looked upon,
    full of promise. An open window
    in a country house—, and you almost stepped
    towards me, thoughtfully. Sidestreets I happened upon,—
    you had just passed through them,
    and sometimes, in the small shops of sellers, the mirrors
    were still dizzy with you and gave back, frightened,
    my too sudden form.—Who is to say if the same
    bird did not resound through us both
    yesterday, separate, in the evening?

    but it is also true that no amount of imagining can match the fulfilment of the hic et nunc shared with the beloved. Bachelard would disagree, I'm afraid :-)

  11. Yes, that post was the first time I commented here :-)

    This poem is as near to perfection as anyone can ever come, I think. If I had only this of Rilke, he would still be one of the most important of poets to me....