"Heaven has a road, but no one travels it; Hell has no gate, but men will bore through to get there."

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Death and the Powers



Meat wants Meat, Meat wants Sweet, Meat sweats for the Sweets, Meat wants who it meets- It kills to eat. Now there's no help but evolving Out of the Meat, and into the System. It isn't the many and the few- It's yourself- it's you! Come! Into the world of light!

From Robert Pinsky-

Why write about robots? Not because I am interested in gadgets. And why a man whose body is failing? Not because I am interested in death.

Rather, I think it is the nature of work, and the human need to make things, that led me to imagine Simon Powers, a bullying, charismatic lover of money and poetry, power and family.

When we strive, in the characteristic human way, to make a business or a garden or a poem or a collection or a piece of music, we try to give what we make certain qualities of life. The made thing, if we succeed, has something resembling a soul. In English, we say that it is a "work of art" or simply "it works."

The word "robot," I am told, comes from a Czech word meaning "one who works." The things we make- if they are all we hope them to be- imitate something of ourselves. A poem, says the great American poet William Carlos Williams, is a "machine made out of words"; that is, a poem is a robot that performs the work of meaning and emotion. The garden, the business, etc. are robots that perform versions of that same work.

The robots who perform the opera-within-the-opera are the creatures or descendants or avatars of Simon Powers and his family. In trying to re-create the Powers family and their reality, the robots are in a sense returning the favor of creation... as our works may sometimes do.

No comments: