The metatext

“Metaphor and metonymy both, it strikes me, are devices of the lover; they are the devices of one who seeks to render or capture the other. What are the devices of the beloved? We don’t know, because it always the lover, never the beloved, who speaks. Why? Perhaps it’s the orientation toward unhappiness of literary work — the orientation toward trouble. If you were happily loved, literature implies, you would have nothing to say. Ask: why do you always write of unsatisfied desire? Where do you find such a continual source for that lack?” – Lightsey Darst, “The Anne Carson Workout”

Watch yourself sleeping

“The beloved is sleeping. The trivial, intimate things that you find out as a matter of course one night and from then on cannot help treasuring: how the other one sleeps, with this arm here or there, with a deep athletic breath or as if dead. Dreams — visible, like a cat’s, or sunken. How expression falls from the face and what it leaves there. Dressed, undressed, with the covers kicked off in the heat or twined around one leg. Nothing like these closed eyelids and slightly open mouth. Nothing like the soft notch in the throat, undefended, or the dream-sweaty scattered hair.” – Lightsey Darst, “The Anne Carson Workout”