The Observer

Entr’Acte: LOVESONG: ENUMA ELISH (Part II)

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By SAM STOKES
Published: April 24, 2012
Excerpt from Performing & Telling Your Life

(SAM enters. He is playing guitar to video and ELIOT on tape continues.
Together, it is a hymn to Tiamat, before the dreadful rise of Marduk, and to the ocean. It is a love song. It is slightly out of time.)

ELIOT

At the still point of the turning world. Neither flesh nor fleshless; neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is, but neither arrest nor movement. And do not call it fixity, where past and future are gathered. Neither movement from nor towards, neither ascent nor decline. Except for the point, the still point, there would be no dance, and there is only the dance. I can only say, there we have been: but I cannot say where. And I cannot say, how long, for that is to place it in time. The inner freedom from the practical desire, the release from action and suffering, release from the inner and the outer compulsion, yet surrounded by a grace of sense, a white light still and moving, Erhebung without motion, concentration without elimination, both a new world and the old made explicit, understood in the completion of its partial ecstasy, the resolution of its partial horror. Yet the enchainment of past and future woven in the weakness of the changing body, protects mankind from heaven and damnation, which flesh cannot endure. Time past and time future allow but a little consciousness. To be conscious is not to be in time but only in time can the moment in the rose-garden, the moment in the arbour where the rain beat, the moment in the draughty church at smokefall be remembered; involved with past and future. Only through time is time conquered.

(ELIOT fades out and SAM’s song remains for only a little longer. It ends on a subterranean tone- its toes beginning to touch sea monsters. The video continues for a short while before submerging to black.)

 

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