Wednesday, August 01, 2012

the saying and the (un)said ...

"It may be that, like things which speak to themselves in their language of things, language does not speak of things or of the world: it may speak only of itself and to itself .... Certain realities cannot be expressed, but, and here I quote from memory, 'they are what is manifested in language without language saying it.' They are what language does not say and hence says. (What is embodied in language is not silence, which by definition says nothing, nor is it what silence would say if it were to speak. If it were to cease to be silence, and instead be ...) What is said in language without language saying it is saying (that is to say?): what is really said (that which makes its appearance between one phrase and another, in that crack that is neither silence nor a voice) is what language leaves unsaid ...."

(Octavio Paz, The Monkey Grammarian. Trans. Helen R. Lane)

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