A Winter Letter

Out of the rebounding border of an ecstatic flight came/comes a letter.

There is this gorgeous beginning about snow:

The snow continues to fall, muffling the tones of shoveling and of cars struggling. Despite the overcast sky, the whiteness blanketing roofs, alleys, walks, lawns and gardens, pitches against the eye, a tingling glare. Muted with sharpness.

which then leads to some brief remarks on minimalism (“Minimalism is not simply for healing: minimalism can anneal”); some sentences about a mutual friend in ICU who is a scholar of Heidegger; and then a reading of a passage from What is called thinking? Then! There is an odd ejaculation in the midst of explicating a quotation from Heidegger: “Hands off my orgasm!” which begins to make sense if the reader carries over the previous statement about perception and sensation “where it becomes possible to admit I cannot see and there is no shame in not seeing, hearing, sensing”. Our writer has imitated well the ecstatic moment and wishes to preserve it.


It, the letter, is in essence an extended objection to the contention promoted by Heidegger “You cannot talk of colors to the blind.” And in a way too dares the reader to think about nothing but.

Years after the 2003 letter, I am prompted to reread it by what I read in an article by Cynthia Macdonald “A Shift in Perception” that

neuroscientists have discovered that there is much more crosstalk among the senses than we ever imagined before

Some of us have been imagining for a long time. Researchers at UC Berkeley are in the process of investigating synesthesia and mania.

And so for day 845

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