I'VE poured my WINE

Samuel Beckett?

Strolling along the Champs-Élysées Avenue years ago, I still remember Samuel Beckett moving past me with a smirk on his face, stopping and saying to me “Like the unreal city, London, this city of Paris is like a Wrong Side to me; how could you pad along, my friend?” I could always engage myself in unusual conversation with him as I was used to doing, but instead of replying, I let him speak. He continued “This world is meaningless, futile, shallow and absurd. What the hell your mind is waiting for? Waiting for what? Tell me, dude! But I know you can’t tell, because there’s nothing, you know, NOTHING that you can wait for. Why on earth are you justifying the existence of some non-existent entity in its entirety? Ain’t you from my folks, Syre?” I remained quiet, groping for proper words to reply. Before I could catch hold of some, he vanished in the multitudes of men and women, leaving some rings of smoke behind. I am still puzzled as to who he was! “The Wrong Side and the Right Side” was a book written by Albert Camus and it was T. S. Eliot who had termed London as “Unreal City”, while “the futility and absurdity of this world” was the seminal idea of Beckett’s writings; indeed, it was Beckett with his physical appearance whom I had talked to, but how come such a variance of thought flashed in the talk of a fellow who touched the thoughts of others very meticulously like an outright stranger! I am still puzzled. Yeah, I am puzzled. But I think I need to return from the complexities of thought. I believe it’s high time I left the complexities of memories and immersed myself in the melody of a cuckoo singing songs of the PRESENT amidst one of the boughs of a cedar tree in my garden. Melody of the Present has its own soothing effect.

© M. Syre

2 Comments

  • Syre

    Hello, Julie, first of all I appreciate that you dropped in and enriched me with the piece you had written on Beckett. Indeed, as a giant of a writer he deserved a homage from a fantastic writer like you.

    Your piece of writing “an…other…voice… (Homage to Beckett), Julie Clarke © 2006” reminds me of a mime Beckett once wrote: ACT WITHOUT WORDS ONE. He had titled the mime so because the content within spoke of misbalance, shallowness, meaninglessness and absurdity. You have, of course differently, made use of dots, as you said above “written in short breaths, staccato”, to make yourself heard and understood.

    I loved your style of “an…other…voice”. It is really marvelous and arresting. It takes mind from point zero to infinity. It makes one’s thoughts swirl as if they are pretty lasses in a ballroom of history. I quote you “Before this…a strange remembering…or perhaps…not a remembering…something someone said…distant and clear…but yet… still in the head…like it was a remembering…or a voice…but, not that made sound…something…else…a flash of something…clear and distant…no capturing it…a bird with wings too fast…a flash of light…and then gone…caught…in the corner of the eye…but…gone…yes, a memory…on a screen…that…was not in the brain…or perhaps in the brain…no way to make sense of it…just there…and yet…not there at all…frayed…edges…the scarf that hung near the window…moved in the wind…a flash of something…light…and then…gone…think of something…something…other…than…that…the scarf in the wind…small shadows on the wall…half light…lying sick in bed…noise outside…but still in the head…like a remembering…of some…other sound…distant yet clear…and all the time…thinking that it must have been…something…to name…the fresh…green, blades of grass…plucked and gathered in the hand…and her…not here…long gone…but only just remembered in the blades of grass…and the small voice…clear and distant…a remembering and yet not…just caught in the corner…a bird in a web…flickering…then still…flickering…” And this goes on beautifully. The thing speaks itself.

    My piece was just an imaginative thrust, moving from one angle to the other, mixing Camus and Eliot with Beckett and interweaving, interconnection, all leading to confusion as the mind sometimes gets so. Coincidentally, your entry on Facebook with a piece written on a similar time experience with the same fabulous writer made my mind find an admixture of different modes of fancy; you provided me with that. Now, my piece on the imaginative plain coupled with your imaginative stuff enriches the discussion in a more elaborate manner. I really feel great to have an interaction with a great writer on the other side: yeah, you, undoubtedly.

    PS: I had tried to leave my comment on your website on the day you had shared your site with me but couldn’t succeed due to some technical problem, perhaps due to selection of Profile for leaving a comment at the end of the text. I shall try it next time hopefully. Regards.

  • Julie Clarke

    Hi Em, As you know this is a piece I wrote in 2006, it is a Homage to Beckett, both as a remembrance of my relationship with his writing, which began years before, maybe 1979, and memory & perhaps too the realization finally that my mother and my grandmother (who was my real mother, since she reared me) were dead. It is written in short breaths, staccato, like tiny gulps of air taken by a child caught between breathing and crying and the adult brain, still child-like in many ways, attempts to grapple and latch onto something, anything, to grasp the significance of the knowing. Here is a link to the piece of writing: http://juliejoyclarke.blogspot.com.au/2010/01/anothervoice-homage-to-beckett-2006.html

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