Roger's wise comments find confirmation in the Book of Job, when Job's
friends' first arrive, "they sat down with him upon the ground seven days
and seven nights, and none spake a word unto him: for they saw that his
grief was very great" (2:13).
Peter C. Herman
At 10:48 PM 2/21/2004 +0100, you wrote:
>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.