As I recall, the centre of the Vita Nuova has exactly the same kind
of silence around the main event: Beatrice's death. "I will not speak
of it now." Could moments of the greatest sorrow and the greatest
bliss perhaps both have wise silence as their best music?
> > so permeable to contradiction that when (since you spoke of the
>> Epithalamion) he gives us a portrait of his bride, he compares her effect on
>> the beholder to Medusa's.
>Not only does he give us a petrifying, gorgon bride, but (as I said last
>year on this list, about the Iraq invasion, I think) he gives us a
>conjugal consummation in total silence, at the culmination of a hymn. The
>'song made in lieu of many ornaments' has a funny, muted kind of heart.
>Of course by one way of thinking this 'experience of the center' is
>conventional; but on the other hand the dramatization of it in
>Epithalamion is pretty relentless, and almost (to me) as painful as the
>end of the Cantos of Mutabilitie. Look how the crown which Ariadne wore:
>at the center of the labyrinth is the terrifying presence that will
>release, and consume, you.