• Vol. 04
  • Chapter 03
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Cyanic Vanitas

We are always called to choose between a story of sensory communion or explanatory speculation.


[I can attempt figurative interpretation]


1. Sky surface with crinkled rolling paper.
2. Sea cross-section with intrusive plastic bag, or marine impression with abstract jellyfish.
3. Abandoned half-used baby-wipe on blue toilet changing bench.


[I can proceed to free association]


“And all the clouds that lowered upon our house
In the deep bosom of the ocean buried.”
(Richard III, Act I, scene 1)


Texas. 1865. General Edmund Kirby Smith reluctantly (?) waved the flag of surrender in the early summer sky.


Cyanic Vanitas


Kieślowski’s Blue. Then White. Red is missing, just as it is missing from the Texan flag.
(Autobiographical postscript: I don’t watch blue movies, pornography ruins my fantasies, and my partners.)


[I may endeavour to reflect on colour and society]

I hear that Greeks and Romans were indifferent to the colour blue.

As a medieval subject, I would dip my quill in the liquid substance and dedicate myself to the meticulous art of manuscript illumination.

I would only cry: “Nonsense!”, if my early blue Victorian ethos was to encounter more modern abstract art.

I know I should avoid philosophising, but I do enjoy pompous proverbial wisdom. In a few centuries we said all there was to say about beauty, both in its ideal and relative form, but we had to wait for Michel Pastoureau to refresh our saying and be able to deliver this new truth, namely that blue is in the culture of the beholder.


[But if I’m honest, and faithful to my purpose, I must confess that nothing beats a story sung by a poet]


Cyanic Vanitas

I have before me a scene of nuptial burial, a drowning maiden bride. Moved by the spectre of a young woman, I choke her salty cry in my own throat, as I am defeated by the excruciating coldness of the absence of her lover. And I offer her my loyalty, I sacrifice my own story to draw hers on the canvas of our collective memory.

For she will never hear the Chorus repeat: “Oh! Hymen! Oh! Hymenaeus!”. And never will she drink in her lover’s mouth. For she will wear a shroud as a wedding veil, and you will let a mere piece of cloth haunt and threaten the wetness of your dreams.

But… I sense you are not shaken by someone else’s sexual longing to death.

And so, you wouldn’t mind an ending with a premature ejaculation!


Robert Schumann: “Five pieces in a folk style”, Op.102; 1st movement “Vanitas vanitatum”: Mit Humor.